From freshly grown brightly colored rainbow chard to handmade birdhouses and flowers for mom, Escalon’s EskiFest to showcase and support the FFA offered plenty and drew in a large crowd on Saturday.
Festivities were staged on the campus of Escalon High School, with a wide variety of vendors on hand, a trolley running back and forth between the quad area of the school and the farm across Stanislaus Street, in addition to prize drawings, food, face painting, bovine bingo and more.
Thoroughly enjoying the chance to interact with the attendees, Alternate Dairy Princess Marisa Vieira, a 2013 Escalon High grad now attending Modesto Junior College, had information on the dairy industry.
“I have about a month left,” she said of serving as a dairy industry ambassador. “I like talking to people that don’t know anything about our dairies, it’s interesting to me to educate them.”
New Jersey resident Guiniviere Monte, visiting in the area and possibly relocating here, was taking in the information and admitting that East coast residents often think of the West coast, California in particular, as beach and ocean, not farms and cows.
Members of the floral design and wood shop classes at Escalon High had a number of projects for sale and the Escalon Music Boosters had a popular face painting booth.
“I already bought a bunch of stuff,” admitted Jaynee Jones of nearby Riverbank, attending the fest with her three young children, all of whom had visited the face painting booth. Their grandparents, Jim and Peg Jones, live in Escalon. “I like the trolley and the vendors; I bought a wood project, some homemade dog biscuits.”
Freshman Evelin Lopez is a member of FFA and was helping out selling tickets for the prize drawings.
“It just caught my attention,” she said of getting involved in FFA. “I like to do different stuff.”
Over at the Weave and Eve natural foods booth, proprietors Eve Bentley and Pam Weaver were selling many gluten free products and also have goods with no oils, no flours and no refined sugar.
“I have a lot of patients that are diabetic and I needed to come up with a good snack with no sugar,” Bentley said.
“We do natural sweetening through fruit, using apples, dates, cranberries,” added Weaver.
There were craft projects for the kids, tours of the school farm to see pigs and sheep and grilled up hot dogs and tri tip available for the hungry shoppers.
There was a brisk wind, but the crowd didn’t seem to mind too much, keeping vendors busy throughout the day. Proceeds help benefit the Escalon FFA program and FFA student members.