Apparently not. When we called up the Sonoma County Tourism Bureau, they told us that this confusing use of two highly similar words that, for all the world, looks like a cringe-worthy mistake -- is no mistake.
"It's because there's so much to do here in Sonoma it's like an entire country," explains Craig Haskell, the Sonoma County Tourism Bureau's information specialist. Yes, their official name and Web address use "County." And, yes, all of their literature uses "Country." And, yes again, confirms Haskell, they do get calls about this "from time to time" -- especially from Sacramento, where they have several large -- and, apparently, confusing -- poster displays.
"It's just a marketing idea," concedes Haskell. And that's a good thing for him, because if Sonoma Country really was an independent nation, you and I would be forbidden by law from bringing more than one liter of wine back into the United States -- which would put something of a damper on Sonoma Country's wine-based economy.