Published: Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 15:10
Seemingly endless bowls of hot soup warmed the stomachs of people from the community on an overcast day.
Contra Costa College’s culinary arts and fine art departments worked together to raise funds for the Bay Area Rescue Mission at the second annual “Empty Bowls Project” in the Three Seasons Restaurant on Friday.
“It’s fantastic to see such a response from the community and the college,” culinary arts Chairperson Nader Sharkes said. “We had a group that came in the morning to clean and organize, chop the veggies, make the broth and everything in between to make this event very special.”
Sharkes was looking for a philanthropic organization to work with whose focus was feeding the hungry and the Bay Area Rescue Mission became a willing recipient of the donations from the money generated by the departments’ collaborations, Tim Hammack, Vice President of Programs for the Bay Area Rescue Mission, said.
“(The event) is bringing awareness of the hungry to the American people — it is our mission and this is a great way to do so by working with the college,” he said.
Last year’s event was held in the Fireside Room, however, this year’s “Empty Bowls Project” was held at the Three Seasons Restaurant which incorporated the use of the patio area outside.
The project raised money to aid the organization in feeding the hungry. The culinary arts department furnished food and the art department created the many bowls patrons could chose from.
The bowls were sold individually, at general price, for $10 per bowl and for students the price was $5. People were able to purchase a stylized set of four bowls for $60.
The culinary arts students created three different types of soups, which included chicken and vegetable lentil soup, New England clam chowder and cheddar broccoli.
The soup was served buffet-style with bread and croutons.
If the attendees wanted a different soup than the last one they tried or if they were leaving, waiters gathered the used bowl to clean it up for them.
Sharkes said that the clean, empty bowls were a glimpse of a vision of what the homeless have in their bowls nearly every day and something everyone should be working toward changing.
Hilltop YMCA Membership Director Sarah Weems and Executive Director Linda Cook made sure the word of the project was spread.
Richard Ross, a resident of Richmond enjoyed the event. “The soup and the service were excellent, my wife and I have always heard about the Three Seasons Restaurant from our granddaughter who is a student (in the culinary arts department),” Ross said.