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Tradition lasts for 90 years

If Ash Wednesday is here, can waffles be far behind? Wondering what’s the connection? Well, if you’ve lived in Grass Valley for a few years within the last century, you may have already guessed.

On Shrove Tuesday, Feb. 28 – the day before Ash Wednesday – the Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Grass Valley serves waffles all day long, for lunch and dinner. The tradition began 90 years ago.

Incidentally, Shrove Tuesday is also known as “Fat Tuesday.” This is because people eat all kinds of fatty, oily food that day before beginning 40 days of fasting and restraint during Lent.



Many churches host pancake breakfasts on Shrove Tuesday. But the Episcopal Church in Grass Valley, the oldest of its kind in California, has been doing things differently since 1916. That year, it is believed, the church members had no stove to make pancakes but they did have a waffle iron to hold over an open stove.

So they made waffles. And a tradition was born.




The church earned $2 from the first waffle sale. Nowadays, the sales help raise a few thousand dollars and involves several hundred participants.

Tuesday’s lunch will be from 11a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The dinner will be from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. The menu prices will range from $4 to $6.50 and $2.25 for preschoolers. The church is located at 235 South Church St.

The reservation deadlines for groups of four or more is Monday. Call the church office at 273-7876 by 4 p.m. or 273-7396 by 8 p.m.

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To contact staff writer Soumitro Sen, e-mail soumitros@theunion.com or call 477-4229.


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