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Annual Dinner Helps Support Church Programs
Kept busy serving up heaping plates of spaghetti on Saturday night was Bryan Halpin, one of many on the kitchen crew at the Escalon United Methodist Church for their annual spaghetti supper.Times Photos By Marg Jackson

An annual event, the fundraising spaghetti dinner put on by the Escalon United Methodist Church continues to draw diners.

Now in its 28th year, the event shows no signs of slowing down, as residents turned out to enjoy the heaping plates of spaghetti, salad, bread and beverages on Jan. 28, topping it off with ice cream for dessert.

“We made 50 gallons of sauce yesterday,” co-organizer Judy Downard noted of preparing for the feast.

The spaghetti feed is also a family affair, as Downard noted that relatives from as far away as Michigan and Colorado come in to help out with the dinner.

“We feed about 300 or so, that’s what we plan for,” added Downard.

Proceeds of the annual spaghetti dinner help support the church, with funds going to various needs at the local level and outreach programs.

Modesto resident Susan Moore, whose mom belongs to the church, stopped by to pick up six take-out dinners.

“We usually come in and sit down to eat but this year my husband was busy so we will take it to go,” she said while spooning some extra spaghetti sauce onto the steaming pasta.

Six-year-old Lainie Harris was enjoying helping out this year as well, offering up the trays of ice cream cups for diners to choose their chocolate or strawberry swirl dessert treat.

Also working was Diana Halpin, coming in from Michigan with her husband Bryan, Downard’s grandson.

“We’re just here to help out,” she said, smiling, adding that they also came in during the church’s annual Holiday Bazaar and soup/pie luncheon a couple of months ago to assist.

Hours for the event were 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. and organizers said there were people waiting at the door when they opened and business was brisk throughout the evening.