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TMCNet:  Lathrop farm offers snow, thrills, and fun

[January 02, 2013]

Lathrop farm offers snow, thrills, and fun

LATHROP, Jan 02, 2013 (The Modesto Bee - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Chloe Palmer gets plenty of snowfall in her hometown of Parker, Colo. But the 8-year-old was having just as much fun tossing around manufactured snowballs with her aunt Lisa Klemm at Dell'Osso Family Farm.

Klemm, of Stockton, couldn't say it was just like playing in real snow, but she said "it certainly feels wet when it melts." The snow-play area is only part of winter wonderland activities at the farm designed to provide plenty of fun for children before the end of the holiday break. "Holidays on the Farm" is scheduled to run through Saturday.

On the next-to-last weekend, Enrique Paez helped his 5-year-old daughter, Alyssa Paez, move around on the farm's outdoor ice-skating rink. His wife and two sons also took their turn on the rink.

"We just came out here to spend some time with the family and enjoy ourselves a bit," Paez said while taking a break.

The Paez family has been to Dell'Osso before, and Alyssa had fun with some of the not-so-wintry activities, such as checking out a zebra at the petting zoo.

Yareli Avalos, 14, of Ceres got some air time on the large jumping pillow, but she had her sights set on something much higher. Her mission was to move down the 300-foot-long zip line, and she had no fear.

"You only live once, you know," she said.

With the rest of her family, Yareli moved down the line at top speed, screaming at the top of her lungs.

"I felt like I was flying," she said. "It wasn't as scary as I thought it was going to be." Dell'Osso Family Farm is just south of where Interstate 5 and Highway 120 meet. Yareli's family had seen the farm plenty of times as they drove to San Jose, but never visited until Sunday. They were joined by their neighbors, the Mendoza family.

The families hopped on the Dell'Osso Express Train for a slow but scenic ride on a railroad track that circles the back of the property. At night, holiday lights sparkle along the train's path.

"We wish we would've come here at night ... for the lights," Karina Mendoza said.

While train rides and ice skating are fun, the main attraction is the 300-foot snow hill, where visitors can slide downhill in tubes provided by the farm. Each snow-tubing ticket purchase offers a 90-minute session, and Calvin Chen said he was able to get at least 15 runs downhill in that time.

"It's nice and fast," Chen said after sliding with his wife and three children in their own tubes. "And the kids like it, too. That's the most important thing." For more on Holidays on the Farm, including hours and prices for various activities and an online reservation calendar for Snow Tube Mountain, visit www.holidaysonthefarm.com or call (209) 982-0833. Dell'Osso Family Farm is at 501 S. Manthey Road in Lathrop.

Bee staff writer Rosalio Ahumada can be reached at rahumada@modbee.com or (209) 578-2394.

___ (c)2013 The Modesto Bee (Modesto, Calif.) Visit The Modesto Bee (Modesto, Calif.) at www.modbee.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

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