Photographed by visitors worldwide, the iconic “Welcome to Napa Valley” signs are getting a facelift, and photos taken of those signs are requested as tribute is paid to the signs while they get a nip here, a tuck there and a little lipstick added.
Anyone who shares a photo with the Napa Valley Vintners will receive a commemorative poster of the signs later this year.
The Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) are the caretakers of the two signs, which are located just south of Calistoga on Highway 29, and in Oakville, also on Highway 29. With some financial support from Robert Mondavi Winery, the signs will get refurbished over the next several months.
The basic look and structure of the signs will not change, but they will receive new wood and paint and broken letters will be replaced.
Some may have noticed the Oakville sign was missing its grape cluster recently for about two weeks. No crushing took place, only repairs.
The signs were originally erected in 1949, and NVV found a photo from the St. Helena Wine Library showing the dedication of the signs on June 30, 1950. Sometime in the 1960s featured winery names on the right-hand side of the signs were replaced with “Bottling Poetry,” said Cate Conniff of NVV.
Photos taken by visitors have already come in to NVV from Florida, Germany and the greater Bay Area, officials said.