Following a fun night full of charity auction bidding for the 49ers Foundation, the 13th annual Winter Fest kept the good times going into Saturday. Friday night’s silent and live auctions brought in nearly $400,000, setting a record for a one-night donation total in the event’s history.
Once again, long snapper Brian Jennings held a heated yoga session for Winter Fest guests on Saturday, but that wasn’t the main attraction of the morning.
Said distinction belonged to the Chalk Talk event, which featured game film break down and on-stage presentations from players and coaches. Jim Harbaugh opened Chalk Talk with a speech that focused on the team turning the page after the tough loss in Super Bowl XLVII.
Harbaugh admitted that “Our chins were dragging on cement for a couple of weeks” after the loss, but that he had no interest in playing the ‘What if?’ game.
“If worms had machine guns then birds wouldn’t mess with them,” Harbaugh said. “On to the 2013 season.”
The 49ers coach also said he’s looking forward to building a “special” team with the 14 picks in the upcoming NFL Draft, saying General Manager Trent Baalke could become a “superstar” among his peers.
“The pressure’s on Trent in that regard,” Harbaugh said with a laugh.
Harbaugh then gave way to offensive coaches Tom Rathman, Tim Drevno, Geep Chryst and Reggie Davis, who were also joined by fullback Bruce Miller, guard Mike Iupati, quarterback Scott Tolzien, long-snapper Brian Jennings and running back Anthony Dixon. After that, defensive coaches Jim Leavitt, Greg Jackson and Jim Tomsula took over, with some help from Aldon Smith and alumnus Eric Wright.
Then the floor was opened up for questions, and one guest asked Smith what position he would play if he were on offense.
“Quarterback,” Smith said with a smile.
Chryst, the team’s quarterbacks coach, immediately jumped up from his chair in the crowd and started playing catch with Smith to a chorus of laughter.
“(Backup quarterback) Scott Tolzien’s not happy in the room right now,” emcee Dave Feldman joked.
Following another sunny lunch on the patio at the Resort at Squaw Creek, curling took over the ice skating rink with Olympian curler Tracy Sachtjen and husband Karl. The Sachtjens gave instructions to guests and players like Miller, Tolzien and Dixon on the proper technique for sliding the granite stone across the ice and how to sweep.
After guests took turns practicing their curling skills, a competition broke out with a frozen turkey serving as the target for the curlers. Naturally, Dixon won with the closest stone and proudly carried the turkey around like a trophy afterwards.
“I’m going to be barbecuing later today,” Dixon said. “If you smell something good, you know that’s coming from my room.”
In the afternoon, kids took part in Snow Olympics outside. The events included a modified skeeball course, snow golfing, snow shoeing, sledding and football tosses through hula hoops. Miller and Dixon enjoyed the activities along with Davis, the team’s tight end coach, and his family.
Meanwhile, some adults and 49ers Co-Chairman Dr. John York gathered inside to get expert tips on mixing wine and food combinations from Chef Eric Maczko of Round Pond in Napa.
“I’m happy to share with the team, share with the fundraiser,” Maczko said.
A day after skating on the ice with Winter Fest attendees, former Olympic gold medalist Kristi Yamaguchi hosted a fireside storytelling session. Yamaguchi is the author of two children’s books, “It’s a Big World, Little Pig” and “Dream Big, Little Pig.” The stories focused on a young pig making friends from all over the world and following her dreams, as Yamaguchi used her experience as a world-class ice skater to help mold the books.
“It’s not completely autobiographical,” Yamaguchi told the children in the proceeding Q&A session. “But I wrote about a lot of things that are familiar for me. Similar experiences, for sure.”
The end of Saturday night will be marked by another wine tasting and silent auction event, before a dinner, live auction and more entertainment.
Tags: Anthony Dixon, Bruce Miller, Jim Harbaugh, Jim Tomsula, Winter Fest
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