Empty Bowls helps Eagle County’s Salvation Army fill stomachs | VailDaily.com

Empty Bowls helps Eagle County’s Salvation Army fill stomachs

EAGLE-VAIL, Colorado – You can help the local Salvation Army, have a great lunch with your buddies and support the arts all in one place Thursday.

The Empty Bowls luncheon helps restock the Salvation Army’s food banks, which had become one of the organization’s biggest challenges.

Between 200 and 300 people come looking for health every month, said Tsu Wolin-Brown with the Salvation Army. Last year, the Salvation Army helped 20 to 30 people a month. Some of those now asking were donating food and money a year ago.

“Many middle income people who used to donate are now asking us for help,” Wolin-Brown said.

The Salvation Army gives food to people who need it and ask for it. Most months that’s 300 families. They’ve spent more than $72,000 on food in 2010 trying to keep up. That doesn’t include food donations from local people and businesses.

Which brings us to Thursday’s Empty Bowls luncheon.

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The event Empty Bowls lunch raised $10,000 last year, and they need you again this year, said event coordinator Diana Mathias.

“People have lost jobs, but their kids still have to go to school,” Mathias said.

In exchange for one portrait of Andrew Jackson on a $20 bill, you get lunch with the best people you know, food from the best chefs you know, and a hand-thrown pottery bowl created by local artists to take home after you’ve emptied it.

“Twenty dollars almost buys a box of food,” Wolin-Brown said.

Throw in a Benjamin Franklin or maybe another Andrew Jackson and you can be a judge in the soup competition.

Soups are being prepared by Spago and the Ritz-Carlton, Ti Amo, Larkspur, Sonnenalp, Mi Zuppa, Alpenrose, Westside Cafe, Golden Eagle, Beaver Creek Mountain Dining, Heidi’s Brooklyn Deli, Avon Bakery, Alpenrose, Columbine Bakery and Zino’s.

You’ll enjoy it in a bowl hand thrown by local artists and artisans: Ann Loper and Kate Wasson, Denver Guild of Potters, Margie Westerman, Lake County Potters, Colleen Everett, Howard Tuthill, Willow Murphy, Dan, Lauren and many more potters from Colorado Mountain College and the artists from the Alpine Arts Center Edwards.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or rwyrick@vaildaily.com.