Delano’s Shop-with-a-Cop will take place Saturday at the Delano Walmart. It is the 28th year the program has taken place in Delano.

There will be 50 youngsters who will be accompanied in the shopping and who will also receive food baskets.

There are another 150 families that have been informed they can pick up baskets or if they will have baskets delivered to them.

The event is sponsored by the Delano Police Association and Explorers. They will be assisted by 15 to 20 officers, reported Mario Nunez, coordinator of the program.

“We’ve even had dispatchers and clerks who have volunteered to sponsor kids in the Shop-with-a-Cop,” said Nunez.

Entering December, the program had raised about $12,000 of its $30,000 goal to fund the program.

On Dec. 11 volunteers were to fill up a police SWAT truck with toys at Walmart.

Toys or cash can still through tomorrow be donated at the police department.

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The 33rd annual Festival of Carols hosted by the Kiwanis Club of Delano and Key Clubs of Delano, Robert F. Kennedy and Wonderful Prep high schools will take place tonight starting at 6 p.m. at the Delano High auditorium.

For admission it is suggested that adults donate $2 and for persons under 12 a donation of $1 is suggested. Admission will also be granted for those donating non-perishable food items.

All donations will support the Community Connection Center Food Pantry.

Kiwanian Steve Kinsey reports the goal is to provide a multicultural array of musical treats to celebrate and prepare for “this magnificent season.”

Kinsey said that in addition to the musical kick off for the holiday season, the audience and participants have the added benefit of helping needy families. Donations will be used for the community food pantry, which is administered by the Delano Community Alliance through the Community Connections Center.

Kinsey may be contacted at (661) 725-1286.

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Jorge Jaime has been hired as director of the North Kern District Cemetery in Delano. The past supervisor of grounds for the cemetery, who has been employed for eight years, served a month as interim director before the cemetery board voted him full-time status.

Alfred Roman, who had held the post, resigned in September because of medical issues.

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A second planning meeting was held in November by leaders of the Delano Harvest Holidays Association which is making plans for the 75th annual celebration that is to take place in October 2020.

Directors plan to contact sponsors as soon as the association is able to obtain a 501C3 which makes it a non-profit organization.

A potluck party of directors will take place 5 p.m. Dec. 21 at 2104 7th Ave.

Directors at the recent gathering made plans to enter the Delano Christmas Parade and asked for a budget from the chairpersons of the grand parade, Tiny Tots program, the Queen show and the barbecue and entertainment program held on Saturday at Memorial Park.

Sponsors will then be sought, said president Claribel Gutierrez, to be general sponsors of the festival or to sponsor specific events.

Queen show chairperson Maizy Garza reported that she will be arranging after school visits to the four high schools in Delano and one in McFarland in the spring to attract candidates for the 75th queen show.

Practices are to start in early summer to ease the pressure of the actual queen show preparation. The show is scheduled Sept. 19, 2020, at the Delano High auditorium.

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The Mexican-American Pioneers of Delano held their Christmas party at the Aviator Casino the evening of Dec. 11 with members and invited guests attending.

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The Delano Lions Club held its Christmas dinner Dec. 9 at the General Café and Grill, formerly known as Perko’s.

The Lions are working with all high schools in Delano to seek a start to a Leo Club, a high school branch of Lions Club, on all the Delano campuses.

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Distribution of Toys for Tots in Delano will take place Friday starting at 3:30 p.m. at the Memorial Park exhibit building.

Contributions are still being accepted, reported Alex Grijalva and Adriana Salinas who are coordinating the collection and distribution.

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First practice for candidates for the 2020-21 Delano High School cheer squad will take place 9 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday at DHS.

Candidates, including current eighth graders who wish to seek positions on next school year’s squad, should enter the campus from the Norwalk Street open parking lot. The practice will take place in the school quad or the wrestling room on the auditorium’s east side or on the backstage area of the girls gym, located at the gym’s southeast corner.

Current high schoolers must earn at least a 2.0 grade average by the close of the first semester. There are no requirements for eighth graders until they complete the first quarter of their freshman year.

Candidates must attend at least five of the scheduled practices in order to qualify for the Feb. 15, 2020, tryouts in the high school north gym.

The additional practices are 1:30 to 4:15 p.m. Dec. 19, 9 to 11 a.m. Jan. 13 and 20, 2020, 3 to 4 p.m. Jan. 27 and Feb. 3, 2020 and 9 to 11 a.m. Feb. 10, 2020.

Persons needing more information or with questions may call current coach/adviser Carmina Reyes, 720-4282, during the school day; Sharena Gonder, the cheer adviser starting in July, 2020, 720-3201; or volunteer Gary Girard, 725-8803.

Practice schedules and applications are available from Reyes before or after school or noon at the book/print room in the Delano High School auditorium building.

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The Delano Bengal Bantam Aviator Casino youth football team coached by Fernando Montano was runner-up in the valley tournament, losing 13-6 to a Visalia team in the championship semi-finals.

The Bengal Juniors team lost in overtime in the championship game after a fumble at the one yard line.

There were four Bengal teams competing this fall in youth football with 247 players and cheerleaders involved, reported coordinator and coach Mario Nunez.

Teams and cheerleaders were recognized at an awards barbecue Dec. 8.

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D. J. Jimenez, who starred in football, basketball and track before his graduation from Delano High School, was shown with his team, a basketball 10 and under team which reportedly was ranked No. 1 on the west coast, in a recent edition of The Californian.

Jimenez is married to the former Jill Hernandez of Delano who was a cheerleader during my time advising cheer squads.

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Sophia Zaninovich was one of the members of the Centennial High varsity girls tennis team named the central section Team Academic champion for fall sports. Her family must be one of the original Zaninovich families in the Delano area.

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Basketball girls teams from Cesar E. Chavez High School will play Monday at Delano High. Chavez swept Delano in earlier games in the home and away contests.

Chavez in Nov. 26 home games won two of three from visiting Independence. Varsity Lady Titans led almost all the way in posting a 45-36 victory. Malaya Espiritu was a Titan standout on both offense and defense.

With just five players dressed, the Chavez JV team held on for a 32-30 win. Independence won the freshman game, 18-8, with Chavez again having just five players.

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