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Art in the Park offers free day of fun for kids

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Art in the Park offers free day of fun for kids

Manteca Junior Women, from left: Jan Turner, Becky Hahn, Paula Botelho, Loretta Coleman, and Angie Hersman are pictured with two tables full of themed gift baskets and two brand-new children’s bicy...

Photo contributed/

POSTED June 13, 2012 2:08 a.m.

Five hours of fun for the whole family is on tap at the Manteca Library Park on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Not only is it free to young children from age three up to third grade. The Art in the Park event hosted by the Manteca Junior Women’s Club is also offering dozens of ways for lucky visitors to go home with some hot-ticket items for as little as a buck. These are the prizes that will be given away to the winners of a drawing to be held at the park. They include two brand-new bicycles – one for a boy and the other for a girl – plus tickets to Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo (two tickets valued at $110), two tickets to the Willie Wonka and Chocolate Factory show at the Gallo Arts Center in Modesto in July, bowling at Strike Zone Family Fun Center in Manteca, Chronicles of Narnia movie and game packs courtesy of Christian Bookstore in Manteca, and a four-pack tickets to a Stockton Thunder game for the 2012-2013 season, just to name a few. The bicycles are donated by Cheryl and Hillary Hahn.

Tickets to win one – or more – of these drawing prizes will be on sale at Saturday’s event for a dollar apiece, or six for $5.

There will be 15 free arts and crafts booths where the children can participate in fun activities that include watercolor painting, face painting, making a card for Father’s Day, and making Noah’s Ark complete with the animals.

In addition to this free event for the children, there will be a dozen vendors selling handmade hair bows, cupcakes, Jamba Juice smoothies, and many other offerings.

Proceeds from the drawing ticket sales and money collected from the vendor booths will be used by the club for their many community projects. These include scholarships awarded to women who are going back to college – the amount varies from year to year based on whatever money the club has available – donations in kind to Haven of Peace which is a respite home for abused women and their children, and their philanthropic program called Random Acts of Kindness. For the club’s most recent act of kindness, they purchased a set of tires for a woman in need.

“If there’s a need in the community, we give back,” explained club member Becky Hahn who is sharing chairman duties with Angie Hersman for this year’s Arts and Crafts in the Park.

They also take a collection each month from club members for “whatever extra things we have in our houses – necessities such as towels and toiletries” which they put in a box and then take to the Haven of Peace.

“We just give whatever is needed, if people are struggling to make ends meet. For example, a mother needed new tires for her car, so we bought tires for her car. We also do coupons for the military. We collect coupons and send them overseas for our military to use over there, even if the coupons are (six months) expired,” said Hahn.

Club president Jan Turner said the club is also involved in Manteca High School’s Success Locker. This is a project that helps the homeless students at the school with whatever they need such as a change of clothes.

“We just started it this year,” Turner said of this project.

Last Christmas, the club also took part in LOVE, I.N.C.’s gift program for needy area children.

“We adopted 34 children for Christmas,” Turner said.

But the “biggest thing we do” as far as fund-raising is concerned, Hahn said, is “making pumpkin bread for the Manteca Pumpkin Fair. Last year, we sold over 1,000 loaves,” said Hahn.

The 30 plus members of the club all work together to make their signature pumpkin bread “from scratch.” They spend a whole day at the Manteca Senior Center making the bread, Hahn said.

Members of the Manteca Junior Women meet every last Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at Angelano’s restaurant located in the former David and Sylvia’s Family Dining in the East Cardoza shopping center on North Main Street.

For more information about the club, or to buy advance raffle tickets, call Turner at (209) 401-7562.

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