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Taking place today, Sunday in Ripon
Sally Elsakr puts together a plate at the Egyptian Festival at St. Mark Coptic Orthodox Church in Ripon.

George Benjamin was concerned about the weather earlier this week.

The forecast called for possible showers.

As one of the organizers of the annual Egyptian Festival at St. Mark Coptic Orthodox Church in Ripon, he was relieved and even thankful for cool down weather on Friday.

“We’re expecting a busy weekend,” he said of this free event is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Benjamin and others are expecting a strong turnout, with guests coming from the Bay Area, Concord, Sacramento, and the surrounding area.

Many of the locals were on hand for the first day of the festival that features an expanded area.

The home next door to the church was recently purchased, opening up more space for festival goers to sit back, relax and enjoy live Egyptian music while eating shawarma, beef or chicken kabobs, and falafel.  

“People come here for the food,” said Benjamin.

Since 2003, Nadia Azer has led the making many of the delicious Egyptian cuisine

St. Mark Coptic Orthodox Church is located at 315 Orange Ave.

Vegetable dishes are also available.

Besides food and music, Egyptian Festival ’19 will feature those in traditional clothing – the church’s boutique offering traditional Egyptian garment will be open – along with the Pharaoh photo studio, souvenirs, henna tattoos, face painting, and games for the children.

A tour of the church grounds and the raffle are also included in the indoor / outdoor festivities.

“This is our big celebration,” Wahid Azer said. “It’s a chance for people to share in our activities and culture.”

For more information, call 925.357.7555 or 209.599.3310.