Republican congressional candidate Richard Snelgrove held an ice cream social in Washington, D.C., Thursday to raise both cash and interest in his race against Utah 2nd District Democratic incumbent Rep. Wayne Owens.

Snelgrove, whose family owns an ice cream business, attracted GOP heavy hitters, including Senate Minority Leader Sen. Robert Dole, R-Kan., and Utah Republicans Sen. Jake Garn, Sen. Orrin Hatch and Rep. Howard Nielson. Rep. Jim Hansen, R-Utah, was out of town.Snelgrove, who said he has raised just over $30,000 for his campaign so far, also attracted some contributors, but no estimate of the amount he raised was available.

He told reporters his race is being supported by the Republican Congressional Campaign Committee as a challenge to a "vulnerable Democrat."

Polls so far show Owens easily ahead of Snelgrove, but the challenger called those figures premature.

The Republicans have assigned a field representative, David J. Sackett, to help Snelgrove and are attempting to funnel money to him.