Posts Tagged ‘TOTAL Ministries’

Hub City Empty Bowls in Spartanburg, SC, Launches 2017 Program

May 31, 2017

Hub City Empty Bowls – an annual fundraiser that uses handmade pottery bowls to feed hungry Spartanburg citizens – has set the 2017 dates for its well-attended events. There will be three regularly scheduled bowl-making events: Saturday, July 15, 2017, at 10am-noon and 1-3pm in Spartanburg Art Museum’s pottery studio at Chapman Cultural Center in Spartanburg, SC; Thursday, July 20, 2017, from 5-8pm at West Main Artists Co-Op, during ArtWalk; and Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017, at 10am-noon and 1-3pm at Chapman Cultural Center. Soup Day will be Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017, from 11am-4pm at Chapman Cultural Center. All events are free and family friendly.

Hub City Empty Bowls is a localized fundraiser inspired the international Empty Bowls decentralized program. Locally, the program’s spearhead Carolina Clay Artists coordinates public bowl-making sessions. At no charge, citizens of all ages are given supplies, tools, space, and instructions on how to make hand-shaped pottery bowls. Those unfinished bowls are left at the venue to be painted and fired by experienced potters. Bowls often made by children can be simple, primitive, and charming. Others made by experienced potters can be precise, intricate, and sophisticated.

With hundreds of bowls created by local citizens, Carolina Clay Artists then hosts Soup Day, an event where patrons receive the bowls – each for a $15 donation to TOTAL Ministries, a local charity that provides food and other resources to people in financial crisis. In addition to receiving bowls, the patrons can enjoy a meal of soup, bread, and tea donated by the community’s leading restaurants, hear live music, bid in a silent auction, and enjoy the fellowship and comradery of knowing they are helping to feed people in need. In 2016, the Carolina Clay Artists donated a record-breaking $33,000 to TOTAL Ministries.

“Coordinating Hub City Empty Bowls is a massive undertaking,” 2017 Chairman Bruce Bowyer said. “People want to know as soon as possible about our dates so they can plan accordingly. Some people come to all of the bowl-making sessions and Soup Day. Plus, by setting the dates early, we can better handle the large crowds of people who normally show up. It is not unusual for us to have several hundred people come to a bowl-making session. And come Soup Day, we’ll see more than a thousand.”

Despite the crowds, it is seldom anyone has to wait to make a bowl or enjoy Soup Day. Space, volunteers, and experience are plentiful enough to keep everyone engaged.

Carolina Clay Artists is a local group of hobbyist and professional potters who come together monthly to share ideas, hold workshops and demos, and tour pottery studios to see other artists’ work and learn new ideas. It is open to all who have an interest in learning and sharing about pottery. Annual dues are $35. Hub City Empty Bowls is the group’s annual charity fundraising event to help feed the hungry.

TOTAL Ministries got its start in 1982 as Project Eat. Founder Dannie Horne saw an unemployment rate of 9.7% and that many people in Spartanburg County were hungry. During the first 17 months of Project Eat’s existence, $190,000 of groceries were distributed in an effort to alleviate that problem. In 1983, TOTAL Ministries of Spartanburg County, Inc. was incorporated by 12 Spartanburg churches to carry on the work of Project Eat. Since then, additional emergency services have been added to the TOTAL mission in an effort to help those in need. For those in need, TOTAL can help with utility services, food, and medications.

Empty Bowls started in 1990 by Michigan art teacher John Hartom, who organized a charitable event to give his art students a way to make a personal difference in the lives of others in their community. Hartom’s students made pottery bowls in their high school art classes, and the finished products were then used as individual serving pieces for a fundraising meal of soup and bread. From that simple beginning, Empty Bowls has spread around the world, taking root in communities both small and large. Spartanburg had its first Empty Bowls program in 2009. All Empty Bowls efforts are locally based with all proceeds going to a local charity with a mission to alleviate hunger in its community. None of the money raised leaves the community. The lead agency, Carolina Clay Artists, donates all of its time and talents, and receives no monetary benefit. Locally, all proceeds go to TOTAL Ministries.

For more information about Hub City Empty Bowls, please visit online at (www.HubCityEmptyBowls.com) or call 864.706-3739 or 864/585-9167.

Hub City Empty Bowls Soup Day Slated for Oct. 15, 2016, in Spartanburg, SC

September 30, 2016

Hub City Empty Bowls’s annual Soup Day – a grassroots fundraiser to help feed local hungry people – will be Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016, from 11am-4pm at Chapman Cultural Center in Spartanburg, SC. The public is invited to select handmade pottery bowls and enjoy a wide selection of gourmet soups in exchange for $15 donations. All proceeds go towards feeding the hungry at TOTAL Ministries, a local non-profit, faith-based agency that helps citizens who are facing financial crisis.

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Last year, Hub City Empty Bowls donated $26,000 to TOTAL Ministries. Carolina Clay Artists has spearheaded Hub City Empty Bowls since its inception in 2009. Since then, this group of potters has raised tens of thousands of dollars to help feed people in Spartanburg County.

For the past several months at Spartanburg Art Museum’s pottery studio and West Main Artists Co-Op, the general public has been making clay pottery bowls in preparation for Soup Day. Average citizens, as well as trained potters, have made hundreds of bowls at free bowl-making events. Those bowls have been glazed and fired by volunteers and will be displayed in Spartanburg Art Museum at Chapman on Soup Day. The display of hundreds of colorful bowls is an impressive sight. Patrons can select the bowls of their liking in an exchange for $15 donations. Afterward, the patrons may enjoy a simple meal of soup, bread, and tea while enjoying live music and fellowship.

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“As much fun is generated during Soup Day, we always want to keep in mind the real reason why we do this,” Bruce Bowyer, Chairman of the event said.

“Latest statistics say that about 15 percent of the people in Spartanburg are what professionals call ‘food insecure.’ Food Insecurity causes 43,000 Spartanburg County residents to struggle with putting food on the table or keeping a roof over a families head. TOTAL Ministries can help relieve the stress of these families by making sure they can put food on the table. The Carolina Clay Artists and all of the many people who help with Empty Bowls do it because we want to make sure everyone has enough food to eat. It really is just that simple.”

“The need in Spartanburg is dire,” Traci Kennedy, Executive Director of TOTAL Ministries, said. “If it weren’t for Hub City Empty Bowls, I don’t know what we do. Carolina Clay Artists is a Godsend. We literally have people lined up outside our door needing food. Our resources are limited, and I hate to admit that we cannot meet the entire need of the community. But thanks to Empty Bowls a lot more people are able to get much needed food. If you’ve never been in the situation of not knowing how you will feed your children, you’ll never fully understand how important Empty Bowls is.”

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TOTAL Ministries has become an official organizing partner with Carolina Clay Artists in the annual Hub City Empty Bowls project and the recipient of the proceeds. In past years, the proceeds were donated to various hunger-related agencies.

The soup – donated by local restaurants – will be served in Chapman’s theater lobby, where the music will also be performed. More than two dozen restaurants or food providers have been recruited to donate at least five gallons of soup. Those restaurants are Andre Nguyen, Basil’s Grille, Country Club of Spartanburg, Cribb’s Catering, Cribb’s Kitchen On Main, FATZ Café, Garner’s Cafe, Gerhards Cafe, Hub City Co-Op, Lime Leaf, Lowes, McClellan’s Urban Eatery, Mon Amie Morning Cafe, Moveable Feasts, Nu-Way Restaurant & Lounge, Palmetto Palate, Renato In Centro, Skillet Restaurant, Southern BBQ, Sparks, Sun King Chinese Restaurant, II Samuels Restaurant, Wild Ace’s, and Willy Taco. Donors of bread, tea, and supplies include The Beacon Drive In, Cakehead Bakery, Little River Roasting Co., Long Horn’s, Wade’s Southern Cooking, and Chick-fil-a.

During Soup Day, there will also a silent auction and live music. Collectors take note: the silent auction will feature finely crafted ceramics created by local and regional artists. The musicians donating their talents are Daniel Z, Fayssoux & Brandon, Rick Praytor, Frank Walker, and Mark Miller & Friends. Public drum circles, led by Melisa Emkjer, will be held in the plaza noon-1pm and 2-3pm.

“We are getting down to the wire on this year’s Hub City Empty Bowls’s project,” Bowyer said. “We’ve got the bowls, we’ve got the soup, now we need the people to come and get them.”

The event’s sponsors are Carolina Clay Artists, Spartanburg Art Museum, West Main Artists Co-op, Chapman Cultural Center, Chris Williams, Action Printing, The Healing Arts Fund at Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, Milliken, Fairway Outdoor, The Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg, and Wheresville Productions. This program is supported in part by The Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg, its donors, the County and City of Spartanburg, and the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the John and Susan Bennett Memorial Arts Fund of the Coastal Community Foundation of South Carolina. Proceeds from this event will be directed to the Hub City Empty Bowls Project Fund, a component fund of The Spartanburg County Foundation established to increase awareness about the issues of hunger and food security, and to raise funds to help local organizations fight hunger. This year’s beneficiary organization is TOTAL Ministries.

For more information about Bowls Soup Day, please visit (www.HubCityEmptyBowls.com) or call 864/706-3739.

Hub City Empty Bowls 2016 Aims to Feed Local Hungry Citizens in Spartanburg, SC

July 12, 2016

Hub City Empty Bowls anticipates another great art-based campaign in 2016 to feed the hungry people in Spartanburg County, SC, and invites everyone to make hand-crafted pottery bowls at free public events this summer. The finished bowls will be used for the annual Soup Day fundraiser in the autumn. This year, there will be three bowl-making opportunities for public participation: Saturday, July 16, 10am-noon and 1-3pm in Spartanburg Art Museum’s studios at Chapman Cultural Center; Thursday, July 21, 6-8:30pm at West Main Artists Co-Op; and Saturday, Aug. 27, 10am-noon and 1-3pm in Spartanburg Art Museum’s studios at Chapman Cultural Center. The Soup Day fundraiser will be Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016, 11am-4pm at Chapman Cultural Center.  The food pantry at TOTAL Ministries will receive the proceeds from the fundraiser to help feed the needy in Spartanburg County.

According to a 2016 report by County Health Rankings & Roadmaps by University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, 15 percent of Spartanburg’s population – that’s 42,980 people – is “food insecure.” In Greenville County, the percentage is 14. The lowest ranking county in the state is Lexington with 12 percent, and the highest ranking county is Allendale with 28 percent. Overall, 17 percent of the people in South Carolina “lack adequate access to food.”

“We might not be the worst county in South Carolina with a hunger problem,” Traci Kennedy, Director of TOTAL Ministries, said. “But 42,980 is a lot of people – our friends and neighbors – who don’t have enough to eat. For children it is even worse. 22.5 percent of the children in Spartanburg – almost one out of every four – is going hungry. It is TOTAL Ministries’ mission to help feed the hungry, and thanks to Hub City Empty Bowls, we are making headway. I just pray we have another good turnout of people to make the bowls and then have them and their friends come back on Soup Day to make donations, take the bowls home, eat some truly wonderful soup, and take comfort in knowing they have helped someone in need.” TOTAL Ministries has an annual budget of about $300,000, normally helps more than 4,500 households each year.

But first, you need to make pottery bowls. Bowl-making events provide a unique opportunity for members of the community to experience the pleasure of working with clay at no cost and at any level of experience, including no experience. The clay, facilities, and instruction are all donated.  Members of Carolina Clay Artists and volunteers will be on hand to instruct participants in the techniques of bowl-making.  Many of the bowls will be simple and primitive, which has a beauty all of its own. Some participants are experienced potters, who make their bowls on pottery wheels, often producing professional-grade bowls. The events are open to anyone willing to give of their time and effort, and make for wholesome and free family activities. The bowls are left at the studios and are later glazed and fired by experienced volunteers.

“People look forward to our bowl-making events every year,” Nancy Williamson, publicity leader on behalf of Carolina Clay Artists, said. “I see some of the same faces and families come back each year. It’s fun, easy, creative, free, and, of course, it is for a good cause. I am truly amazed at some of the raw talent I is see. Even more amazing is to see all the finished bowls laid out on Soup Day for the public to take home. It’s almost like an art exhibit – a huge art exhibit with every color of the rainbow and shape imaginable.”

Proceeds from last year’s campaign allowed Hub City Empty Bowls to make an all-time high donation of $26,000 to TOTAL Ministries, a faith-based organization with a primary mission of helping the financially disadvantaged citizens of the community. Most of the money was raised on Soup Day, when citizens would receive the handmade bowls by donating $15. As part of the festive occasion, local restaurants donated gourmet soup that the donors could enjoy, along with live music and fellowship. 2016 marks the eighth year that Carolina Clay Artists has spearheaded the local effort of the internationally successful Empty Bowls concept of feeding the needy through the creation of pottery bowls.

On Soup Day, the hundreds of finished and colorful bowls will be displayed in Spartanburg Art Museum at Chapman Cultural Center. For every $15 donation, the donor gets to keep a bowl of his or her choice and enjoy a simple meal of soup, bread, and tea, served in Chapman’s theater lobby. Along the perimeter of the lobby will be various serving stations set up by local restaurants that donate a wide selection of soups to the occasion. Patrons can enjoy soups from some of the best restaurants in Spartanburg, while dining under a large canopy set up in the outdoor plaza, and enjoy listening to live music and sharing in the fellowship of knowing they are helping feed citizens in the local community. A silent auction of donated items also takes place as another means of raising money. The tradition of having a drum circle in the lobby or plaza will continue this year.

Empty Bowls was started by a high school teacher in Michigan in 1990 as a high school student project to help feed the needy and has grown into an international phenomenon.  There are hundreds of Empty Bowls projects around the world, raising millions of dollars to feed the hungry. Each Empty Bowls organization is independent and self-governed.

Thus far, this year’s sponsors are Spartanburg Regional Foundation Healing Arts Fund, Carolina Clay Artists, West Main Artists Co-Op, Action Printing, Milliken & Company, Wheresville Productions, Chapman Cultural Center, Spartanburg Art Museum, and Chris Williams. The project is still seeking more sponsors: companies and individuals willing to donate funds; restaurants to donate soup, bread, and tea; other businesses to donate eating utensils, such as paper cups, plastic spoon, and napkins; individuals and businesses to donate silent auction items; and potters to make the bowls.  Those willing to donate should contact Traci Kennedy by e-mail at (Director@TotalMinistries.org) or call 864/585-9167. For more information about TOTAL Ministries please visit (www.TotalMinistries.org).

Hub City Empty Bowls is a component fund of the Spartanburg County Foundation. It was established to increase awareness about the issues of hunger and food insecurity, and to help local organizations fight hunger.  For more information, please visit online at (www.HubCityEmptyBowls.com). For the latest information on Hub City Empty Bowls, please like the organization on Facebook.

2015 Hub City Empty Bowls Kicks Off June 18, 2015, in Spartanburg, SC

June 7, 2015

Hub City Empty Bowls is now gearing up for its 2015 bowl-making sessions and Soup Day, which are a fundraiser to help feed hungry people in Spartanburg, SC. The first two bowl-making sessions will be Thursday, June 18, during ArtWalk at West Main Artists Co-Op, 6-8:30pm, and Saturday, June 20, 10am-noon and 1-3pm, at Spartanburg Art Museum’s (SAM) Art School at Chapman Cultural Center. The money raised through the public’s making of handmade pottery bowls will be donated to TOTAL Ministries, a charity dedicated to feeding local citizens who don’t have enough to eat. Hub City Empty Bowls is a project of Carolina Clay Artists.

Empty Bowls is an international fundraising project that has taken root in many communities as a grassroots effort to feed local and needy citizens. Over the course of a few months, citizens are invited to make handmade pottery bowls at no cost. Bowl-making sessions are always fun and family oriented events. Those bowls are then professionally glazed and fired. At the end of the project, the public is invited to Soup Day, where citizens may pick out the bowls of their choice for a $15 donation each and then enjoy unlimited soup that is donated by local restaurants. Other activities on Soup Day include live music, silent auctions, drum circles, and fellowship. Hub City Empty Bowls’ Soup Day will be Saturday, Sept. 26, 11am-4pm, at Chapman Cultural Center.

The other bowl-making sessions will be July 18, 10 

am-noon and 1-3pm, at Chapman Cultural Center; Aug. 20, 6-8:30pm, during ArtWalk at West Main Artists Co-Op; and Aug. 22, 10am-noon and 1-3pm at Chapman Cultural Center. All supplies and instruction are provided by Carolina Clay Artists. The public need only bring enthusiasm, creativity, hands willing to get dirty, and a canned food donation for TOTAL Ministries.

This is the seventh year that Carolina Clay Artists has sponsored Hub City Empty Bowls. Last year, the recipient of the funds was TOTAL Ministries, and the record-breaking net donation was $22,500. “Empty Bowls has become one of Spartanburg’s most favorite and most inclusive fundraising events,” Chairman Nancy Williamson said. “I think the keys to the success are the grassroots approach – making sure the money we raise gets to the people who need it, the public’s opportunity to make pottery bowls, and the accessibility of Soup Day. Where else can you donate $15 and get a nice pottery bowl to keep, all the gourmet soup you can eat, listen to live music, and socialize with like-minded people? It’s just a good deal; a win-win for everyone.”

“TOTAL Ministries is forever grateful to Hub City Empty Bowls for choosing us as the recipient of its labors,” the agency’s Executive Director Traci Kennedy said. “They have recognized a huge need, and we are so glad they believe in our work to help feed the community’s hungry. In Spartanburg County, 15 percent, or about 42,980 people, are in danger of not having enough to eat on a daily basis. The problem is especially bad for children and the elderly. Of all the people who ask TOTAL Ministries for help, 83 percent have a critical need for food. With the money we received last year from Empty Bowls, we were able to feed 4,687 people. All we can say is ‘Thank you!’”

This year, the bowl-making sessions are being grouped into three months, June, July, and August, with four of the sessions being within two days of each other and two being held during ArtWalk. All sessions will be held at either West Main Artists Co-Op or SAM’s Art School at Chapman Cultural Center. “I think part of our success is because of the close ties we have with the arts community. Spartanburg Art Museum and West Main Artists Co-op have generously opened their ceramic studios for our use and they both donate glazes and kiln firing. We could not offer the public bowl-making sessions without them.” Williamson said. “Plus, Chapman Cultural Center is the perfect venue for Soup Day. The large lobby and the outdoor plaza all make for a nice place for people to congregate.”

This year’s sponsors of Hub City Empty Bowls are Chris Williams, Carolina Clay Artists, Chapman Cultural Center, West Main Artists Co-Op, Spartanburg Art Museum, Action Printing, and Wheresville Productions. “We always need sponsors,” Williamson said. “If anyone wants to help or if any business wants to contribute, please contact me.”

For more information about Hub City Empty Bowls, please contact Williamson at 864/621-2768. More information can be found online at (HubCityEmptyBowls.com). The project can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Proceeds from this event will be directed to the Hub City Empty Bowls Project Fund, a component fund of The Spartanburg County Foundation established to increase awareness about the issues of hunger and food security, and to raise funds to help local organizations fight hunger. This year’s beneficiary organization is TOTAL Ministries.

Hub City Empty Bowls Raises $22,500 to End Hunger in Spartanburg, SC

December 31, 2014

Hub City Empty Bowls recently donated an additional $14,100 to TOTAL Ministries, bringing the sum for 2014 to $22,500. The money was made one hand-made clay bowl at a time in an effort to eliminate hunger in the Spartanburg community.

“The community seems to have really embraced this event, coming out to make the bowls, then coming back for ‘Soup Day’ to buy the bowls,” Nancy Williamson, chair of Hub City Empty Bowls, said.

For months, Carolina Clay Artists, a group of local potters, encouraged other potters and the general public to make and donate bowls at bowl-making events held mostly at Chapman Cultural Center and West Main Artists Co-op. These unfinished bowls were then glazed, fired, and used on “Soup Day,” when for a $15 donation, patrons select a pottery bowl to keep and enjoy gourmet soup from some of the best restaurants in town. Each bowl required a $15 donation, and some patrons bought several.

Sponsors for 2014 included: Chris Williams of Clay King, Chapman Cultural Center, Spartanburg Art Museum, West Main Artists Co-op, Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, Spartanburg Regional Healthcare Foundation, Action Printing, Wheresville Productions, and Carolina Clay Artists. Additionally, funds were received from individual donors to help pay for overhead expenses and for opening an account at Spartanburg County Foundation. This account provides Hub City Empty Bowls with a tax-exempt umbrella.

“We are just so grateful for every sponsor and donor who contributed,” Williamson said. “We had increased expenses this year, yet, we were able to pay all of our expenses, set up the fund with Spartanburg County Foundation, and increase the net donation to TOTAL Ministries by $4,000 over last year. Having the tax-exempt status helps us build our capacity to raise funds and improves our position to apply for larger grants and sponsorships for future years.”

The $22,500 (net) given to TOTAL Ministries is a record amount for Hub City Empty Bowls. In 2009, the donation to the Soup Kitchen was $10,000; in 2011, $6,000 to Mobile Meals; in January 2012, $6,677 to TOTAL Ministries; in November 2012, $12,000 to the Soup Kitchen; and in 2013, $18,593 to TOTAL Ministries. The goal was to make 1200 bowls for 2014; 1500 bowls were actually made.

Local restaurants and musicians contributed to the project’s success. Delicious gourmet soups, breads, and beverages were donated by local restaurants. These included: II Samuels, Andre Nguyen, Basil’s, Bull Hawg’s, Chef  Bill McClellan Catering Services, Cribb’s Catering, Cribb’s Kitchen, Farmer’s Table, Fatz (Pottery Road), Garner’s, Gerhard’s, Lime Leaf, Monsoon Noddle House, Moveable Feast, NuWay Restaurant and Lounge, Palmetto Palate, Renato’s, Sparks Fire Inspired Grille at Marriott, Sun King, Wild Ace Pizza and Pub, Willy Taco, Cakehead Bakery, Chick-fil-A, Little River Roasting Company, Long Horn’s, The Beacon, and Wade’s.

Mark Miller of Wheresville Productions recruited local musicians who donated their talents. Participants included Anna V, Fayssoux, Not Even Brothers, Grey Ally, Josie Pettit Band, and the Brianna Hamilton Band. Melisa Emkjer led drum circles that added to the grassroots environment.

TOTAL Ministries was the beneficiary of Hub City Empty Bowls for the second year in a row. Staff, volunteers, and board members from TOTAL Ministries participated in the bowl-making events, worked “Soup Day” and recruited the restaurants.

“The folks from TOTAL Ministries were with us every step of the way,” Williamson said. “We asked a lot of them, and they did not hesitate to work with us.”

“TOTAL Ministries is forever grateful to Hub City Empty Bowls for making us the beneficiary of their efforts,” Traci Kennedy, Executive Director of  TOTAL Ministries, said. “This money is already being put to good use… feeding Spartanburg citizens who would go hungry otherwise. Empty Bowls is a Godsend to us. We can’t say ‘thank you’ enough.”

For folks who missed Soup Day, there is still a chance to purchase a pottery bowl made for Hub City Empty Bowl 2014. Mary and Gerhard Grommer at Gerhard’s Café in Spartanburg generously purchased most of the leftover bowls. Cups or bowls of Gerhard’s soups are available to be served in one of the “Empty Bowls” (just ask your server), and if a patron wants to keep the serving bowl, he or she need only pay an additional $2 charge. Gerhard’s will donate the money from bowl sales to TOTAL Ministries.

Soup Day 2015 is already scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 26 at Chapman Cultural Center. Bowl-making events will start in the summer.

For further info call 864/278-9698 or e-mail to (sWong@SpartanArts.org).

Hub City Empty Bowls Sets Schedule to Help Feed the Hungry in Spartanburg, SC

May 29, 2014

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Hub City Empty Bowls 2014 is set to start making pottery bowls and money to feed needy Spartanburg, SC, citizens. There will be five bowl-making days that will lead up to Soup Day, Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014 at Chapman Cultural Center.

For the past five years, Hub City Empty Bowls has raised tens of thousands of dollars to feed local citizens by having the general public make clay bowls that were used on Soup Day. On Soup Day, the hundreds of colorful and handmade bowls are set out on display for the public’s choosing. For a $15 donation per bowl, the patron may enjoy unlimited gourmet soup donated by local restaurants at the community event that also features live music, a silent auction, and the fellowship of helping others. All of the money raised goes to an established charity that feeds local and needy citizens.

Last year, Empty Bowls raised a record amount of more than $20,000 and netted $18,600 that was given to TOTAL Ministries for its food pantry. The beneficiary of the funds raised this year will once again be TOTAL Ministries, a local non-profit charity that provides assistance for basic needs to Spartanburg County families who are facing financial crisis.

This year, all of the public bowl-making events will be held at either Spartanburg Art Museum School, located at Chapman Cultural Center, or West Main Artists Co-op in Spartanburg. At these events, the public is invited to make handmade pottery bowls. No experience is necessary, and all materials, including instruction by Carolina Clay Artists, are free. The bowls are left to be glazed and fired, and eventually used on Soup Day. Organizers hope to have 1,400 bowls made this year. Here is the bowl-making schedule:

• June 14, Spartanburg Art Museum School, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1-3 p.m.
• June 19, West Main Co-op, 6-8:30 p.m. (ArtWalk)
• July 19, Spartanburg Art Museum School, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1-3 p.m.
• Aug. 16, Spartanburg Art Museum School, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1-3 p.m.
• Aug. 21, West Main Co-op, 6-8:30 p.m. (ArtWalk)

This year’s sponsoring partners are Carolina Clay Artists, Chapman Cultural Center, Spartanburg Art Museum, West Main Artists Co-op, and Chris Williams of Clay-King.com.

Empty Bowls is an international grassroots effort to fight hunger, started in 1990 as a student art project in Michigan. The basic premise is simple: Potters and other craftspeople, educators and others work with the community to create handcrafted bowls. Guests are invited to a simple meal of soup and bread. In exchange for a cash donation, guests are asked to keep a bowl as a reminder of all the empty bowls in the world. The money raised is donated to an organization working to end hunger and food insecurity. Events have now taken place across the United States and in at least a dozen other countries. Many millions of dollars have been raised and donated to hunger-fighting organizations.

The Carolina Clay Artists are seeking sponsors and donations for Hub City Empty Bowls. Funds are needed for expenses. Donations are tax deductible. Anyone wishing to contribute should make checks payable to Spartanburg County Foundation with an indication that the gift is for the Hub City Empty Bowls Project Fund; mail checks to 424 E. Kennedy St, Spartanburg, SC 29302.

For sponsorship opportunities or to learn more about Hub City Empty Bowls 2014, please contact Nancy Williamson by calling 864/621-2768 or e-mail to (NanWilliamson@gMail.com).

Hub City Empty Bowls’ Soup Day Takes Place Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013, at Chapman Cultural Center in Spartanburg, SC

November 6, 2013

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After five months of coordinating the making of more than 1,400 handmade pottery bowls – made mostly by the untrained yet very enthusiastic general public – Hub City Empty Bowls is ready to serve soup and raise money on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013, 11am to 7:30pm.

“Soup Day is upon us, and I think we are ready,” Nancy Williamson, the project’s co-coordinator, said. “We have the bowls, we have the soup, we have the music, and we have the need. Now all we need is for the people to come out on Saturday, Nov. 9, to Chapman Cultural Center and enjoy the experience of eating gourmet soup, fellowship, and the moral reward of knowing that for $15 many of the needy, poor and hungry citizens of our community will have their next meal.”

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All of the money raised at this annual event will go to TOTAL Ministries, a local charity that provides food to the community’s most impoverished citizens. Last year, Empty Bowls raised more than $12,000 for the Spartanburg Soup Kitchen.

Empty Bowls is a national social phenomenon where the potters in individual communities spearhead an effort to raise money for a local charity whose mission is to feed the hungry. With no oversight and little overhead, Carolina Clay Artists, an organization of local potters, organizes the event and coordinates several bowl-making sessions for the general public. Most of the bowls were made at the Spartanburg Art Museum School at Chapman Cultural Center and at West Main Artists Co-op, shaped by hand, rather than thrown on a wheel. The potters instruct the citizens on how to make the bowls, and the clay is provided at no charge. During the months of preparation, the bowls are painted and glazed.

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In addition, professional potters, Carolina Clay Artists members, and Spartanburg Art Museum students and teachers have donated soup bowls for the event. Spartanburg School District 7 has donated bowls that were made from start to finished bowls by their teachers, Spartanburg High pottery students, and Jessie Boyd’s Art Club. Interspersed in the offering of very basic bowls the public can find some treasures. “There’s the feeling of a treasure hunt to the event,” Williamson said. “People look for special bowls, some made by professionals and some made by little children.”

On Soup Day, all of the colorful and various size bowls are brought out. For a $15 donation, a citizen can pick out his or her favorite bowl and have it filled with the soup of his choice. This year, there are about 20 restaurants providing soup. In addition, bread and iced tea will be provided. There will be an ongoing silent auction in the midst of the bowls and soup. “Soup Day is the most amazing experience,” Williamson said. “It is always one of those feel-good experiences. You have such a grassroots atmosphere of handmade bowls, top-quality soup, live music, and the fellowship of kindred souls all coming together to make Spartanburg a better place to live.”

“I’ve bought several bowls over the years,” supporter Steve Wong said. “Soup Day is great fun, but for me the best part is getting to keep the bowl. It never fails that when I go to my kitchen cabinet for a bowl, I always choose one from Empty Bowls. It just means something special. It’s a reminder of how lucky I am to have food to put in my bowl.”

In addition to the bowls, soup, and live music, a new element is being introduced to the Hub City Empty Bowl experience: drum circles. There will be two drum circles: one starts at 11am; the other starts at 5pm. Both will happen outdoors in the Chapman Cultural Center plaza. The public is invited to join the communal drum circles by bringing whatever percussion instrument available and adding sound to the rhythms that will be lead by experienced drum circle enthusiasts.

“We think having drum circles will be a great new thing for Soup Day,” Williamson said. “It seems like a natural pairing, both being so basic and in touch with nature. I kind of think of the drums as calling people to come join in.”

It is by the very nature of the Empty Bowls phenomenon that the bowl making, Soup Day, and fundraising are accomplished by many people working together for a common cause. “So much credit must be given to Carolina Clay Artists,” Williamson said. “They are the heart and soul of this project and Empty Bowls in Spartanburg would not happen without them. They secure the clay, the locations, the instruction: They basically do all of the heavy lifting and spend their weekends glazing, painting, washing and just doing whatever needs to be done. Others who need to be recognized are Spartanburg Art Museum’s Art School, Chapman Cultural Center, West Main Artist Co-op, and donors Chris Williams of Clay-King and Steve and Joanne Metcalf.”

Live music by…

• 11am – The Lovely Jodie
• noon – Fayssoux
• 1pm – Rich Nelson and the acoustic trio “176”
• 2pm – Anna V
• 3pm – The Windjammers
• 4pm – Frank Walker
• 5pm – Mark Miller
• 6pm – Matthew Knights

Soup & Other Food Provided by…

Soup…
Backporch, Basil’s Grille, Billy D’s, Blue Moon Catering, Chef Bill McClellan, SCC, Cribb’s Kitchen, Cuzina’s, Farmer’s Table, Garner’s, Gerhards, Holden’s Ranch, Ice Cream/Coffee Beans, LaTravena, Lime Leaf, Mon Amie, Movable Feasts & Spartanburg ARP Youth, Palmetto Palate, Terrace at Spartanburg Marriott, and Wild Aces.

Beverages and Bread…
Beacon Drive-In, Cakehead Bakery, Little River Roasting, Dutch Plate, Jimmy John’s, Longhorn, and Wade’s Southern Cooking.

For more information, please call Nancy Williamson at 864/621-2768.