By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Community Thanksgiving Dinner Still On Schedule

It won’t be quite the same as in years past – not much is in 2020, for that matter – but Escalon will have its traditional Community Thanksgiving Dinner.

This year, the event will be hosted as a ‘curbside pick-up’ or delivery, with those able to pick up their dinner encouraged to do so, while those who are shut in, elderly or have no transportation urged to call for a home delivered meal.

Headquartered again at the Escalon Community Center, there will be no dine-in dinners served but everyone in the community is invited to pick one up or have one delivered. The meal will be provided on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 26.

Back at the helm after a one-year hiatus, Dianna Dunn is coordinating the volunteer effort to serve up the meals and coordinate drivers while DeeAnna Jackson is taking care of the home delivery orders side of the day.

“If anyone wants to volunteer, they can call me,” Dunn said, “and if they want meals, they call DeeAnna.”

Dunn is looking for people to help serve as ‘runners’ to take the meals out for curbside delivery as well as people to help with the clean-up effort after all the meals have been served. Jackson handles the home delivery of meals and those that need one delivered can contact her at 209-838-6808; you can leave a message with the number of meals needed and the location.

For those helping to get the meal ready to go, Dunn said they can contact her at 209-988-5006; help is needed to put together the to-go boxes, the actual food delivery and the clean-up.

Cooking the meal again this year will be students from the ITT culinary classes in Modesto; overseen by supervisors. Members of a law enforcement training class at ITT are coming in Wednesday, Nov. 25 to help with set up of the meals to go prep station.

Volunteers can also sign up only at

This will be the traditional Thanksgiving meal, with turkey and all the trimmings, from stuffing and mashed potatoes to vegetables and dessert.

“We’ve had a pretty good response,” Dunn said of early call-ins for the meal delivery. “I wish I could say we could all come together (and eat) but we can’t this year.”

Still, organizers of the Community Thanksgiving Dinner want to make sure it still happens and is available to those who want it. The dinner is a program of the Escalon Ministerial Association and monetary donations are always welcome; they can be mailed to EMA, P.O. Box 1, Escalon, CA 95320.

Delivery of the meals on Thanksgiving Day will run from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., with the curbside pick-up hours from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

“It seems like it’s going to be a smooth day,” Dunn said, with all the pieces falling in to place.

She said they usually plan for serving up a total of 350 dinners, and will do the same this year, counting both the curbside pick-up and the home delivered meals.

“We will be cooking up 22 turkeys,” she said. “People can just drive up and get in line; no one will miss out as long as they get here by 1:30 p.m.”