Fill a bowl with soup to feed yourself, many others

November 12, 2018

What began as an informal gathering of four friends has blossomed into a full-blown fundraiser to put food on the table for those in need.

“We were sitting in my pottery studio last winter, talking about different things. We were trying to think up something we could do to give back to the community that would benefit a lot of people,” said Linda Gromov.

The women – Gromov, Christine Link, Nancy Johansen and Leah Ireland – hit on the idea to host an Empty Bowls fundraiser and give the money to St. Vincent de Paul’s Food Bank. Once the food bank was on board, the women got to work organizing the Dec. 1 event.

The artists and their friends patterned their Empty Bowls Project after many others of the same name that take place in communities across the United States. Guests purchase a ticket in advance. It entitles the bearer to one handmade bowl. At Havasu’s Dec. 1 event, they enter, show their ticket and select a bowl. At another counter, they fill their bowl with soup and enjoy the meal. The ceramic bowl is theirs to keep and take home. There will be a silent auction of art items; additional bowls also will be for sale.

Tickets for the Empty Bowls Project are available at St. Vincent’s Thrift Store, 1850 Commander Ave. or at Christine’s Fine Art, 2069 W. Acoma Blvd. They are $20 each; 100 tickets are available.

The event is 2 to 5 p.m. at Christine’s Fine Art, a Lake Havasu City art gallery that showcases the work of local artists.

Eighteen local potters donated their time and artistry to create the handmade pottery bowls that are food and dishwasher-safe. More than 100 bowls will be available from which to choose.

“What makes the bowls dishwasher- safe is the glazes that we use. But over time, the bowls will etch. So if you don’t want that to happen, wash your bowl by hand. Handle it like you would a piece of china,” Gromov said.

Another twist to the inaugural event is that guests will use real spoons – not plastic – and cloth napkins.

“We’ll also have disposable bowls on hand if you don’t want to use your new bowl for the soup. And we’ll have a washing station for people who use their new bowls for the soup, so they can wash it out before they take it home,” she added.

The soup will be provided by Willie Droegemeier. It will be vegetarian vegetable. Meatballs will be served on the side for those who want to add meat to their soup, Gromov said.

Members of Havasu’s ceramics community who created bowls for the project include Jenny Anderson, KC Coulson, Louise D’Assandro, Gloria Danley, Margaret Dreager, June Franzen, Linda Gromov, Tina Handler, Leah Ireland, Nancy Johansen, Vickie LaBeau, Dawn Larsen, Rusty LaViolette, Christine Link, MaryElise Matarazzo, Sandy Moore, Lee Mulligan, Bess Terrell and Debbie Tovar.

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