Empty Bowls Tickets on Sale

Empty Bowls The 19th Annual Empty Bowls will be held Thursday, February 4 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Hilton Fort Collins, 425 W. Prospect. Empty Bowls is a community-supported soup dinner and art auction benefitting the Food Bank. Guests enjoy a simple soup supper featuring soups from local restaurants. Each guest also has the opportunity to select a pottery bowl made by students in the Poudre School District or by local artists from the City of Fort Collins’ Pottery Studio and the Northern Colorado Pottery Guild. This year’s silent auction features pottery, woodworking, paintings and jewelry from several local artists, including TS Berger, Diane Findley, Tom Mills, Paul Versteeg and Nancy Zoller. Tickets for the event are $50 each or $95 for a pair and can be reserved online or by phone (970) 493-4477. For every ticket sold, the Food Bank can provide $250 worth of food to a family in need of assistance.

 New Restaurant Partnership

This year, Spoons Soups & Salads is the featured restaurant partner for Empty Bowls and will provide four signature soups as well as their famous focaccia bread for the event. As a perennial supporter of the Food Bank, the partnership is a natural fit.

“We are excited to expand our partnership with Spoons and to bring more of their signature soups to our Empty Bowls event and to add their famous focaccia bread to the night’s menu,” said Heather Buoniconti, Chief Development Officer, Food Bank for Larimer County. “Tom Stoner of Spoons is a long-time supporter of the Food Bank; in addition to participating in Empty Bowls and THE TASTE, he raises thousands of dollars each year through Stone Soup sales. We’re excited to welcome Spoons as our featured restaurant partner.”

To pair with the Spoon’s focaccia and dinner rolls donated by US Foods, Vom Fass will donate their signature dipping oils. Ben & Jerry’s will return to provide dessert for the evening and Beantrees Drive-Thru Coffee Café will provide coffee. Confirmed soup restaurants for this year’s Empty Bowls include: Biergarten @ Anheuser-Busch, Austin’s American Grill, Bisetti’s, CooperSmith’s Pub & Brewing, Café Bluebird, Enzio’s, Fish, Fiona’s Deli and Catering, Food Bank Community Kitchen, The Kitchen, The Moot House, PVH Café 1024, The Rio, Rise!, Silver Grill Cafe, Spoons Soups and Salads, Spring Creek Grill at The Hilton, Tortilla Marissa’s and Whole Foods.

Empty Bowls History

Nearly 20 years ago, the Food Bank for Larimer County’s Empty Bowls fundraiser began in art class at Lopez Elementary School when the school’s art teacher inspired his students to create empty bowls to represent those who didn’t have enough to eat. Since then, area artists have worked together to support the event and the fight against hunger in the community. Empty Bowls has grown from offering five signature soups in 1998 to twenty soups in 2015 and has raised $700,000 for the Food Bank’s hunger-relief programs.

2015 Review: Our Impact on Hunger

Thanks #3As we launch into the start of a new year, we also spend time reviewing our impact over the previous year. With the support of 2,762 outstanding volunteers, thousands of donors and staff we provided enough food for 7.42 million meals!

Here’s a quick look at what our supporters helped us accomplish in 2015:

  • Provided food for 28,799 individuals through our Food Share program
  • Distributed 3.29 million pounds of fresh produce
  • Served 81,354 meals through our Kids Cafe program

Food Share

Thanks to our supporters our Food Share clients accessed enough food for 1.5 meals per day; saving a family of four $558 per month on food costs. Thanks to our generous community, families were relieved of the stress of worrying about having enough to eat.

Child Nutrition

With help from generous supporters, more children had the nourishment they needed to learn, thrive and succeed. Last year, the number of children living in food inse­cure households in our community continued to hover around 33%. To address the serious issue of child hunger, our Kids Cafe program prepared and served a record number of healthy, cooked from scratch meals and snacks (81,354 meals; 87,125 snacks). Under the direction of our Registered Dietitian and new Community Kitchen Manager, 85% of each Kids Cafe meal was made from scratch, including our buns, marinara sauce and breakfast muffins. Our Backpack program, in cooperation with Loveland Rotary and McK­inney, provided 25,511 weekend food packs for homeless and near homeless children.

Food Link

Thanks to our community, we are able to support the needs of our partner organizations who helped us extend our reach and serve more people needing food assistance. Last year, our Food Link program provided food to 87 non-profit organizations. Food Link member agencies include food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, eldercare facilities and more. In 2015, we saved these partner agencies over $2.3 million on food expenses.

To learn more about our impact, click here.

As our population grows and ages and the costs of housing, childcare, education, medical and other expenses continue to stretch beyond paychecks, we know our work will continue to be vital in this community. Our dream for the coming years is to provide not just food, but also health inspiration and hope to stabilize the lives of our clients and help them on a path to self-sufficiency which will build a vibrant community for all. Click here to learn how you can become more involved in ending hunger in our community

Join our Feeding Us Forward Giving Community

Feeding Us Forward Giving CommunityOur dream for the coming years is to provide not just food, but also health inspiration and hope to stabilize the lives of our clients and help them on a path to self-sufficiency. To achieve our dream, we’re asking friends  with a vision and commitment to hunger-relief to join our Feeding Us Forward Giving Community. This new program provides opportunities for every person to make a difference regardless of giving ability. If we all commit to Feeding Us Forward — as businesses, individuals, non-profit partners and civic leaders — we can cultivate and grow a healthy, hunger-free community. Click here to learn more.

Stability Partner (Monthly Giving)

As a Stability Partner, your monthly donation sustains our mission and fosters our ability to provide a consistent source of nutrition for our clients. By making a regular contribution, at any level, you will help us stabilize the lives of the people we serve. When families worry less about having enough to eat, they can focus their energies and resources on their futures. No gift is too small. For every $1 you commit, we can provide $5 worth of food. Click here to start now.

Impact Partner ($2,500+ Individual Gift)

As an Impact Partner, you can provide critical support to help us evolve our operation and provide better services for our clients. Your gift can help us source highly nutritious foods like fresh fruits and vegetables to improve the health and well-being of our clients. Or your gift can help us improve our distribution methods to reach more people. Your contribution gives us the resources we need to help us facilitate a brighter future for our clients and our community. Please contact Heather Buoniconti, Chief Development Officer, to learn more.

Legacy Partner (Planned Giving)

As a Legacy Partner of the Feeding Us Forward Giving Community, your gift ensures that your commitment to fighting hunger lives on and future generations will receive the nutrition they need to survive and thrive. The Food Bank for Larimer County welcomes gifts of stock, annuities, and proceeds from estates. Please contact Heather Buoniconti, Chief Development Officer, to learn more.