Food & Drink

Taste of Merced County: Awards for women

A luncheon to present the Violet Richardson Award will be held on Thursday at the Elks Club, 19th and M streets, from noon to 1:30 p.m.

The luncheon is hosted by Soroptomist International, and the award recognizes a young woman who participates in significant community service and who has made a difference in the community.

Along with the award, the Women's Opportunity Award will also be announced. This award recognizes a woman who is the head of household and who is returning to school in order to prepare herself for employment.


Mature drivers helped

The Merced College Continuing Education Office is offering a mature driver improvement noncredit class for community residents older than age 55.

The one-day class will be held Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the Atwater Community Center, 760 E. Bellevue Road. In order to receive the DMV certificate, students must complete the entire eight hours.

A $2 state certificate is required and is to be paid to the instructor. Interested individuals must contact the Merced College Noncredit Office at (209) 381-6540 to be placed on the class enrollment sheet, as space is limited.


Sweetheart dinnerMerced Elks Lodge will host a Valentine sweetheart dinner at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday at the lodge. Dine by candlelight, soft romantic music and enjoy steak and chicken Piccata, wild rice pilaf, salad, bread and bits of chocolate and coffee.

Tickets are $50 per couple. To check on the availability of tickets, call (209) 723-1240. No tickets will be sold at the door. Proceeds will go to lodge charity programs.


Black heritage

The Cornerstone Lodge 111 will host its annual Black Heritage Banquet at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Masonic Temple, 1810 M St. A no-host cocktail hour at 6:30 p.m. precedes dinner at 7. Also on the program is a guest speaker, music and door prizes.

Tickets are $30 each. For more information, call (209) 769-5138.


Veterans breakfast

Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4327 will serve breakfast from 8 to 11 a.m. on Sunday at the East Wing of the Veterans Memorial Building. Scrambled eggs, pancakes, sausage, coffee and juice are served for $5 for adults and $3 for children under 12. In the future, breakfasts will be served on the third Sunday of each month.


Enjoy chicken, polenta

The Italian Catholic Federation will host their polenta and chicken cacciatore dinner from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 18 at the Italo American Lodge Hall.

Dinner will be served family style for a donation of $13 for adults and $7 for children younger than 12. Proceeds are used for scholarships and various other programs. For more information, call (209) 722-5155.

No tickets will be sold at the door and take-outs will be available.

Taste of Merced items must be received at least two weeks in advance. There is no charge for the service. Carol Reiter can be reached at (209) 385-2486 or