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Family hosts Posada as Ray of Hope benefit on Dec. 14
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Posadas are a celebration of the Nativity.

They’re also a big part of the Mexican Christmas tradition commemorating Mary and Joseph’s difficult journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem in search of a warm place to stay the night – Posada, in Spanish, means “shelter” or “inn.”

Lorena Victor-Velazquez and her family will be hosting a Posada for Ray of Hope on Saturday, Dec. 14.

“It’s all-around fun,” said Victor-Velazquez, who held an inaugural Posada benefitting the Second Harvest Food Bank a year ago. From that came 331 pounds of donated food items to help the local non-profit servicing San Joaquin and Stanislaus counties.

She prefers to keep this festive event local. Victor-Velazquez recalled her initial meeting with Ray of Hope Executive Director Laura Vieira-Saunders.

“You could tell how much help she really needs,” Victor-Velazquez said.

Proceeds from the upcoming Posada will benefit youngsters in Ray of Hope Children’s Crisis Services “Kids Cupboard,” according to Vieira-Saunders, who is hoping to earmark any and all donations towards the Ray of Hope Christmas program.

The Posada will be held in the spacious Manteca spread belonging to the sister in law of Lorena Victor-Velazquez beginning at 5 p.m. It’s there that invited guests will bring – along with donations – traditional Mexican holiday foods such as tamales and other dishes along with pastries and hot chocolate, to name a few.

“This is more about sharing,” said Victor-Velazquez, who indicated that the Posada will feature the playing of traditional songs along with symbolic decorations and the raffling of prized baskets with every food donation.

The Posada will also feature an appearance by Santa Claus.

Donation for this event along with the Ray of Hope’s ongoing Thanksgiving Food Drive – turkeys, gift cards, and non-perishable food items are being accepted through Nov. 20 – can be dropped off at the Ray of Hope office at 113 W. Yosemite Ave.

For more information, call 209.597.0574 or log on to social media at Ray of Hope Kids Cupboard on Instagram or Facebook.