C r e a t i v e  F o l k

Gary Conway

A Renaissance man for our time (in fact he was awarded Renaissance Man of the Year at the Paso Robles Film Festival, Gary Conway (born Gareth Monello Carmody) was the youngest artist to win a major prize at the LA County Art Exhibition and, before age sixteen, was awarded full scholarships to the three most prestigious art schools in the country and a special private scholarship with the L.A. County Museum. 

See the paintings of Gary Carmody Conway

Graduating from UCLA, he not only dedicated himself to fine art as a life long pursuit, but also went on to become an accomplished violinist who has appeared at the Hollywood Bowl, as well as an architect whose work has been featured in Design West.
His remarkable talents expanded to include TV and film star, and it was in television where he became an instant worldwide celebrity, first with a starring role in the TV series Burke's Law. While on this classic series he had the rare opportunity to work with a grand array of legendary stars of the silver screen, from Mary Astor, to Bette Davis, to Gloria Swanson, to ZaZu Pitts.
Gary became very successful as a screenwriter and wrote the scripts for such popular films as Over the Top, as well as the highly successful American Ninja series.  He also originated film scripts for such stars as Laurence Harvey, Catherine Dueneve and Eddie Murphy. 

Over the last decades, Gary took on the chores of viticulturalist and farmer, work that ennobles the soul.  He learned one lesson in the experience -- Don't Get Mad Get Even!  VIEW and see for yourself:  And on the other end of the emotional spectrum: VIEW

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Marian McKnight Conway

Even among former Miss Americas, Marian McKnight Conway is outstanding. 
As a high school valedictorian, magna cum laude, and straight-A student throughout her schooling career, Marian was able to receive her first full scholarship at South Carolina's renowned Coker College based on intelligence testing. She finished her education at U.C.L.A. on an academic scholarship (one of four she received for special academic and national merit achievements, including a full supporting scholarship as part of Marian winning the Miss America title).  Regarding her freshman and sophomore years at Coker College in Hartsville, SC, which was a woman's college at the time, Marian remarked that “the Coker professors and their expectations made UCLA a piece of cake.
The beauty of the mind is matched with Marian's natural beauty, which has been well recognized, even recently: On glo at msn girl crush  Marian was chosen as one of the top 11 Miss Americas of all time: LINK and Life Magazine on Miss America's 90th Anniversary Celebration chose the 12 Hottest Miss Americas: LINK 

A few years after graduation and her marriage to Gary Carmody Conway, whom she met in UCLA, Marian and Gary bought a broken-down ranch in the enchanting Central Coast of California.

Ranching wasn't exactly what Marian had in mind for herself, and thirty-five years ago, proudly pioneering, they planted a vineyard and then the first Tuscan olive grove on the Central Coast.  Of course, a life often changes in direction.  Witness Marian's Camay Commercial as Miss America: VIEW  And just as much fun... a beauty among beauties (a little nostalgia please!): LINK  Then of course: BEFORE THE GRAPE THERE WAS GRAPEFRUIT!  

Marian is now the proud proprietor of Carmody McKnight Estate Vineyard and Winery (and one of the foremost and long-experienced vintners on the Central Coast).    Marian is the practical rancher... In ranching if you can't sell your cattle you couldn possibly eat all that steak, but now wine, well, that's a different story!

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Kathleen Conway

Kathleen Conway grew up with the land that became Carmody McKnight.  A winemaker in her own right (her late harvest Kathleen Cabernet Franc as well as her sparkling wine has gained an extremely loyal following), she knew that even magical lands need down-to-earth commitment. When Kathleen took on that responsibility the quest for great winemaking began in earnest.

visit:  kestatewines  sparkling kathleen and   vivacity in a bottle!   

Kathleen has extended the inherent biodiversity and sustainability of the land to all aspects of the Carmody McKnight property while ensuring that the unique ecosystem of the land is not only maintained but enhanced.

She has introduced a wide range of animals from free-range chickens to fiber-producing alpacas to underscore the idea that the greater the variety of species, the healthier the ecology.

Kathleen extends that principle into her organic gardens and orchards where forty varieties of tomatoes are commonplace. Because of the wonder soils on the property, for over ten years the gardens and orchards have never needed fertilization of any kind and of course have never been sprayed with weed killers or pesticides.

For Kathleen, biodiversity and sustainability are not concepts to be achieved someday but must be an essential part of one life day-by-day.
kathleen continued