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Dinner-dance Aug. 20 kicks off St. Anthonys Harvest festival
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The annual harvest festival at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church is in September, but preparations are already in full swing.

For starters, tickets are now on sale for the Aug. 20 dinner-dance that will kick off the long-running annual festival. The dinner-dance, which will feature the return engagement of the popular Mike Torres Band of Lathrop, will be held on Saturday, Aug. 20, in the St. Anthony’s Gym located at 323 N. Fremont Street on the corner of Sutter Street.

The dinner will include authentic Mexican entrees with rice, beans and water or soda, plus dessert. Wine, beer and a nacho bar will be available all night. Doors will open at 5 p.m. followed by dinner from 6 to 8 p.m. Dancing will be from 8 p.m. until midnight. There will be several opportunities to win door prizes as well.

Cost for the dinner and dance is $20 each for adults; $10 for the dance only. Dinner tickets for children age 12 and under are $10 each.

Last year’s dinner-dance was a sold-out event, recalled Mike Torres, Jr., a second-generation member of the family band from Lathrop. “Everything was a success as far as I know. It was great and it was fun. The dance floor was packed and everybody was happy.”

The band was founded by family patriarch Mike Torres, Sr. who continues to teach at San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton and still performs with the band. “He plays the guitar and sings,” Mike, Jr. said.

Like his father, Mike, Jr. plays the guitar and sings; his brother Marty is the drummer; their sister Christina plays the keyboard and also provides some of the vocals, and their nephew Stefan plays the sax and keyboard. Mike III – or Mikey – who now lives in Texas used to play with the family band but now has his own performing group that is currently touring the country and just released a brand-new CD.

Mike Torres Band has a wide repertoire of dance music. “We do a lot of Latino dance music, R& B, ‘70s and ‘80s music, oldies, and some rock and roll. We can play a long time without repeating,” Mike Jr. said.

Tickets to the dinner dance are sold after Masses on Sunday, or they can be ordered by calling Joyce at (209) 499-2737 or Sylvia at (209) 111-1111, or by sending an e-mail to

All proceeds from the dinner-dance will go to the harvest festival which is the church’s major fund-raiser during the year. The family-oriented harvest festival will be held on Sept. 17-18.