Jim Anderson promises to rock Northgate Park this Saturday as part of the final Movies in the park presentation.
The Manteca resident who performs an Elvis Presley tribute throughout the region will entertain starting at 7 p.m. as part of the evening of free family entertainment. “The Karate Kid” will roll shortly after dusk around 9 o’clock.
Families are invited to bring blankets and lawn chairs and even picnic dinners as well as their own soft drinks.
Saturday night also marks the end of what had become a summer tradition of sorts for Fred White and his family including wife Rochelle, sons Landon and Elijah as well as daughters Aubreyanna, and Evyn. It not only is the end of this year’s free movies staged by the family-wined DeCristo Production but it is also the final season after four years.
“It’s just become too expensive for us,” White said. “It is how we spent our Disneyland money as a family.”
Trading a vacation for the chance for their family to do something together for the community was well worth it, White added.
“We want to thank the community for participating and joining every year and bringing their families out to share the evening with us in an atmosphere of family-focused entertainment,” White noted. “It is a pleasure to see families pulled away from their 40-inch TV and sharing an evening together on a lawn under the stars. To see children throwing a football and running around on the lawn gives pause to what a family evening should look like. We made that possible for many families and we have received an overwhelming sense of appreciation by these families.”
White was inspired to launch Movies in the Park after he spent $90 to take his family of five to the movies.
White noted many people can’t afford to spend money for family entertainment during the summer due to the economy.
White, at age 40, developed diabetes. At that time he decided to make a life-changing decision that included shucking a six figure corporate salary working with computer programming, jettisoning a 4,000-square-foot house on a 10,000-squre-foot lot so he could slow down a bit, work from home, and spend more time with his family.
The fourth season almost didn’t happen as insurance costs had skyrocketed. The Central Valley Hispanic Chamber of Commerce stepped up and picked up the cost of the insurance to make the final season possible.
White also lauded other sponsors who, he pointed out, still helped support the free community effort despite a tough economy.
He also said the confrontation and pushing match by a group of teens using Woodward Park at the same time the first concert took place earlier this month was a sign that our children need more than ever venues that provide an opportunity to gather without any thought towards their safety.”
“I am disappointed that we could not give more,” White said.