Dave Denton, a local resident and manager of Raley’s at 2550 S. Tracy Blvd., gave five turkeys to the shelter, three of them purchased from Jefferson 4-H Club youth livestock exhibitors during the San Joaquin Ag Fest Junior Auction on June 21 at the county fairgrounds in Stockton.
“All together, the turkeys ran about $1,200,” Denton said. “We get a budget every year through Raley’s. I want to make as many kids happy with the budget we have to work with, so I was able to buy three of the turkeys. I like to keep it around the Tracy area, since that is the community I work and live in.”
Denton said the Raley’s Food For Families program helps people in need within the local community. This is the first year turkeys were purchased through the program.
The three turkeys Denton bought at the auction were raised and shown by local residents Bailey Matos, 13, Mikayla Payton, 15, and Gabriela Casanovas-Scott, 10. Mikayla’s turkey weighed 26.5 pounds, and Gabriela’s weighed 22.7 pounds.
Bailey’s turkey, which weighed 26 pounds, won reserve supreme champion and sold for $550.
“It was exciting to win,” Bailey said. “I’m glad what I did was able to help so many people. It was good of Raley’s to help. This was my first year doing the Ag Fest. I’ve been part of 4-H since I was 11 years old. I did this as a fun project and was able to help so many people.”
“I’m very proud of my daughter,” said Michelle Matos, Bailey’s mother. “There were 125 entries in the market category, and my daughter and her best friend ended up winning the first and seconds overall. Bailey worked so hard. They have to set up the pens, feed the turkeys, hose them down and scoop the poop.”
The turkeys were delivered to McHenry House on June 22 and were more than enough to feed the seven families — 11 adults and 17 children — living at the shelter, with leftovers.
“Those turkeys that were donated came in very handy,” said Armenia Pereira, director and case manager at McHenry House. “We already used two of them. We are very grateful that someone thought of us here. We get donations like this around the holidays, but here it is summer and we get
Since the nonprofit shelter opened in 1987, it has helped more than 6,000 families and served more than 20,000 meals. The McHenry House Tracy Family Shelter is located at 757 A St. and can be reached at 835-2328.
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