By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Valentine’s variety hits Turlock in February

From drinks and comedy to charitable causes and DIY gifts, options abound in Turlock for those looking to celebrate Valentine’s Day this year.

The community can fall in love with giving back at Prodigal Sons & Daughters’ second annual Valentine’s Day benefit dinner from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Feb. 7 at Monte Vista Chapel. The name of this year’s event is “Love Your Story,” and will celebrate individuality and resilience, Marketing Coordinator Kris Loera said.

“Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be about couples only. The love and support we give each other — whether it’s your partner, friend, family or yourself — is what we are celebrating and focus on here at Prodigal Sons & Daughters,” she said. “We decided to name the event ‘Love your Story’ to encourage those to embrace their struggles and recognize their resilience — a representation of the approach we take when working with those struggles in their addiction.”

Not only will attendees at the benefit dinner be treated to local tri-tip from Sanders Meat Service and pesto pasta made by volunteer and executive chef Rebecca Ratto, but their participation in the event will also help support the variety of services offered at Prodigal, from youth drug and alcohol education to adult relapse prevention. There will also be a “Sugar Rush” dessert auction, live music, a couples and singles game and a photobooth to capture memories from the night.

“We are taking a different approach to Valentine’s Day as we are celebrating and encouraging loving yourself and being single too,” Loera said. “Don’t worry about booking a reservation at an expensive restaurant. Allow us to plan a fun-filled evening for you while you enjoy a delicious meal with live music and games.”

Sponsorships are still available for the “Love Your Story” benefit dinner and tickets can be purchased at

For those in search of a thoughtful gift, The Greenery Nursery is offering a “Make & Take Seminar” from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Feb. 8, where attendees will make their very own Valentine’s color planter. Adria Afferino of The Greenery will help guests plant something fun and colorful for their loved one by discussing what flowers are best for containers at this time of year. Then, participants will choose flowers from an abundant selection of blooms to create their own flower bowl to take home.

Tickets for the seminar are $40 and include a pot, soil and flowers. Those interested can sign up at the store, 742 E. Olive Ave., or by calling 209-632-4214.

At The Grand Cru in downtown Turlock, date night will be filled with laughter on Feb. 9 with a viewing of the 2010 love story “Valentine’s Day” — but with a twist. Hosted by Louis C., the event will see movie-riffing comedians Nick Larson and Andre Morton narrate the classic movie live on stage, providing their own comedic input through humorous commentary as the film plays.

Seating for the show begins at 7 p.m. and the movie will start at 8 p.m. Tickets will be available at the door and include a bag of popcorn and two drink minimum.

Just down the street, Dust Bowl Brewing’s downtown taproom is hosting a Valentine’s Beer Dinner of epic proportions on Feb. 10.

With the purchase of a $75 ticket, guests will be treated to a five-course meal featuring oysters, salad, ravioli, Beef Wellington and dessert. The evening starts with a complimentary pour of the brewery’s Super Tramp Wheat-Wine Style Ale, and each course will be accompanied by four other specially-curated pairings.

“The beer dinner offers a fun alternative to a typical night out and allows guests to enjoy beer in a new, interactive way,” Dust Bowl Marketing Manager Michelle Peterson said.

Brewmaster Don Oliver teamed up with the taproom culinary team to create the five courses and decide which brews would pair best with each. Oliver and the chefs will introduce each course and explain why the specific beer has been selected.

“The dinner is a nice Valentine’s Day alternative for couples, but just as fun for groups of friends who enjoy great food alongside beers,” Peterson added.

In addition to chowing down on dinner, guests will also have a chance to win a date night gift basket complete with a $50 Dust Bowl gift card, Super Tramp beers, a HyrdoFlask growler and pint glasses. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and dinner is served at 6 p.m. Seats are assigned, so those who prfer to be seated at the same table with other guests can let Dust Bowl know by emailing To purchase tickets, visit and visit the Dust Bowl Events page.