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Community Briefs 11-17-21

Community Briefs provides a listing of events and activities going on in and around the Escalon area. To have an event featured, e-mail the information to


Fun Bunch Gathers

Members of the Escalon Senior Fun Bunch will get together for a special November event, set for Wednesday, Nov. 17. Being hosted at the Escalon Community Center from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.; the theme will be “Thankfulness.” There will be entertainment, a guest speaker and also an opportunity for attendees to shop or browse at the Fun Bunch Christmas Market and there will also be food, Bingo games, prizes and more. All area senior citizens are welcome and encouraged to attend.


Weekly Dances

Check out the Golden Agers at the Riverbank Community Center on Wednesdays, 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., with dancing, socializing, live music and fun for all. All adults 55-plus are welcome. Drop in, or become a member. Fees are $5 for members and $6 for non-members. Membership is $15; contact Ellie DeJesus at 209-277-5584 or Lupe Padron at 209-573-5014. The Community Center is at 3600 Santa Fe St., Riverbank.


AAUW Meeting Slated

Dr. Phyllis Gerstenfeld is a national expert on the psychology of prejudice and hate crimes who teaches here in the Central Valley at Stanislaus State. On Thursday, Nov. 18 at 7 p.m., she will address the American Association of University Women (AAUW), Oakdale, Riverbank, Escalon Branch on “Hate Crimes: Problems and Responses”. Dr. Gerstenfeld earned a PhD in Psychology and a JD from the University of Nebraska and joined CSU, Stanislaus in 1993. She is currently a professor and chair of the Criminal Justice Department. She is an internationally recognized expert in the field of hate crimes and is author of a leading text on the subject, now in its 4th edition. Attendees at the Nov. 18 gathering must be fully vaccinated, wear masks indoors, and social distance. Prospective members interested in attending this meeting can get further information by calling (209) 847-0271.


Stuff The Bus

San Joaquin Regional Transit District (RTD) will continue the annual tradition of hosting its Stuff the Bus food drive to benefit the Stockton Emergency Food Bank.

RTD will be joined by Escalon eTrans in partnership with MarVal Food Stores and Manteca Transit in partnership with Manteca Food 4 Less which will be hosting simultaneous food drives to collect food for Escalon C.A.R.E. and Second Harvest Food Bank in Manteca. In Escalon, the Stuff the Bus effort will be staged at MarVal Main Street Market, 1900 McHenry Ave., on Friday, Nov. 19 and Saturday, Nov. 20 from noon to 5 p.m. each day. Donations there will benefit the local C.A.R.E., Community Action Resources of Escalon, food pantry that helps meet emergency food needs for residents in Escalon, Farmington and Collegeville.


Toy Drive Event

A fundraiser/vendor event is being hosted in cooperation with Toys for Tots on Saturday, Nov. 20 at ‘Christmas in the Barn’ from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., 10700 Highway 120, East Oakdale. Funky Market operator Lisa Norris has registered with Toys for Tots and the event is expected to include a visit by a couple of Marines with the toy collection barrels. Donations of new, unwrapped toys are being sought to benefit needy local youngsters. Food, music and many local vendors will also be on hand with a variety of wares. Kick off the Christmas shopping and get in an early visit with Santa at the event as well.


Holiday Dinner Served

Escalon and surrounding area residents are welcome to attend a free Community Thanksgiving Dinner, scheduled for Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 25. Meals will be available for eat-in or delivery. Contact DeeAnna Jackson at 209-838-6808 for home delivery of meals with the name, address and number of meals needed, and include your phone number in case there are any questions. The dinner will also be available for those who want to dine in at the Escalon Community Center at 1055 Escalon Ave., at the corner of Escalon Avenue and Arthur Road. The meal will be served – free – from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Thanksgiving. The Escalon Ministerial Association sponsors the dinner and any donations may be made to the EMA-Thanksgiving Dinner, P.O. Box 1, Escalon, CA 95320; they will also be accepted at the dinner but are not required. To help with the set-up, serving and clean up at the Community Center, contact Laramie Blevins at 209-595-1162 or sign up online at


Weight Loss Group

All interested are welcome to join TOPS (Taking Off Pounds Sensibly) a weight support group that meets in Oakdale every Monday morning from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the Community United Methodist Church on Poplar. This group is open to the public and anyone interested in improving their life by losing weight can contact Audrey for more information, call 209-765-7838.


Testing Site Open

Escalon Unified School District, in cooperation with the San Joaquin County Health Department and Fulgent Genetics, is hosting a COVID-19 testing site at the Escalon High School Performing Arts Center. This is free, rapid COVID testing and the site is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; enter on the Yosemite Avenue side. They will take drop-ins or you can make an appointment at The site is open to all area residents; it is not limited to the school district, as anyone in the region is eligible to come in for the free rapid COVID-19 testing.