Thanksgiving menu costs rise slightly

The average cost of a Thanksgiving feast for 10 rose slightly to $49.41, according to the annual survey by the American Farm Bureau Federation. The Modesto and Merced areas produce some of the items in great volume.


Ceres decks out the city for grand opening of Christmas Tree Lane

Ceres is “sprucing” up as it “pines” for the arrival of the Christmas season. Residents – and fans throughout the area – don’t have long to wait because the grand opening of Christmas Tree Lane is set for Dec. 6. The magical nightly display of lights and decorations throughout a neighborhood in the city kicks off with the Ceres Christmas Festival at Smyrna Park on Moffet Road at 5:30 p.m. Pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus, refreshments, live entertainment and trolley rides through Christmas Tree Lane will be offered. The ribbon-cutting for Christmas Tree Lane will be at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free. To learn more, call the Ceres Recreation Department at (209) 538-5682.

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MID board turns down electric rate increase

The Modesto Irrigation District board rejected staff’s request to raise power rates 3.5 percent, saying they’ll draw from reserves to plug a budget gap. They may revisit power rates after an expected irrigation price increase in January.

Blogs & Columns

Ken Carlson

Local medical residencies are interviewing candidates

With all of the people enrolling in insurance and Medi-Cal through health care reform, it seems that local hospitals and clinics could use more doctors. At this time of year, we see a lot of medical school graduates in town to compete for training opportunities with the Valley Consortium for Medical Education.


Entertainment icon Nichols a model for what’s possible here

The death of entertainment icon Mike Nichols on Wednesday triggered heartfelt compliments from the stars of Hollywood and Broadway. Film director Steven Spielberg, for example, said that Nichols’ 1967 movie “The Graduate” was “life altering – both as an experience at the movies as well as a master class about how to stage a scene.”

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