Tom was living his dream; radio! Building towers or stations, broadcasting, managing, and ownership all held his interest. Radio is a fast paced business which left Tom with little time for other ventures, until the day he met wife, Cheryl. Cheryl grew up driving tractors and caring for livestock. Her favorite days involved landscaping and everything in the out of doors. She dreamt of one day building a cabin in the Blue Mountains. He wore a suit and she preferred her straw farm hat. These differences in lifestyles and backgrounds made one ponder “what did they have in common?” The answer to that begins with their mutual fascination with world travel and a love of great wine!
The following year Cheryl’s father (Chuck Nelson) planted the first acres, which were later known as Skylite Vineyards. Nelson could not resist having his own piece of the new AVA. As in so many wonderful wine stories, this was a family project from day one and continued to evolve. Having traveled the world, sampling wines from the southern hemisphere and several continents, the Hodgins learned to further appreciate the Walla Walla wines. But more than the distinction of the valley wines became apparent; the unique experience and brotherhood within the industry was and still is intoxicating. Before they knew it their hat was in the ring.