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Roast benefits Manteca VFW post
Steve DeBrum being sworn in after the 2008 election as a Manteca City Council member. Administering the oath of office is City Clerk Joann Tilton. - photo by HIME ROMERO/Bulletin file photo

It’s being billed as “udder” nonsense.

But even though the evening is in jest the Thursday, Oct. 29, roast of Manteca Mayor Steve DeBrum will benefit Manteca’s Veterans of Foreign Wars Jimmie Connors Post.

The mayor is connected big time with cows considering he is the Northern California representative for the Dairy Farmers of America.

There are just over 140 tickets left to the event at the Manteca Senior Center that can accommodate 255 people. The $25 ticket includes a dinner of cordon bleu and tri-tip with the fixings. Tickets are available through Chuck Crutchfield at 823.6532, Jim Barber at 925.413.4124, or Carlon Perry at 275.0410.

“Ninety percent of it will be embellished,” said Crutchfield who will double as the master of ceremonies and one of the roasters.

The initial roast last year of then Mayor Willie Weatherford raised $11,000.

“We’re making it our major fundraiser,” noted Perry who serves as post commander.

The roast proceeds will go a long way toward the post covering the $2,000 plus cost for insurance, utilities, and other expenses to maintain and operate the new Moffat Community Center that is being used tonight at 7 o’clock for the first VFW meeting.

The VFW has entered into a long-term lease. In exchange for an annual dollar payment to use the facility as the new post home, the VFW when they aren’t using the building will operate it as a community center renting it to groups and families for events.

The VFW will have the Manteca Veterans Center open initially weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon with plans for Saturday and Sunday hours pending.

Once the commercial kitchen is installed, the post homes to make arrangements with a private partner to perhaps offer daily meal service as well as breakfast on Sunday and possibly Saturday. Once the kitchen is open under contract with an operator, the public will be able to dine there as well.

Perry noted if the VFW goes ahead with a bar, state law restricts alcohol sales to club members only.

The first of many planned veterans resources will be available at the center on Thursday, Sept. 24, from 10 a.m. to noon when the Veterans Administration mobile health screening clinic will be on site.

The building will officially be dedicated on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. Veterans Day ceremonies will be moved from Library Park to the new Manteca Veterans Center.

The post — which is now at 257 members — was just notified they have earned first place nationally for membership growth for the second consecutive year.

The post also was tops in the nation for Legacy member growth with 38 members. By sending $1,200 to the national organization, the local post receives $18 a year for each Legacy member in perpetuity.

The Friends of the Post organization — open to both men and women who want to support veterans — are already at 50 members. There is no charge save $7.50 for the cost of a name tag. They will be recruiting additional members at the VFW booth during the upcoming Pumpkin Fair.

The group is planning an Oktoberfest next year.

Perry said the post itself is looking to have events such as a Super Bowl Sunday dinner and even is looking at opening the center up for a community art show.

As for the roast, Perry advises buying tickets as soon as possible.

“They’re going to go fast,” the mayor said.

The event will have an open bar with a raffle split in three parts based on suggestions made by those who attended last year’s roast.

Sponsorships are available for $500.

Among the sponsors so far are Raymus Homes, Casino Real, McFall & Brinton, Tuff Boy Trailers, Doctors Hospital of Manteca, and Manteca Development Group.