For the past seven years, Loudoun Empty Bowls has held a fundraising event to benefit Loudoun Hunger Relief and Loudoun Abused Women’s Shelter. Last year, the event at Stone Tower Winery in Leesburg raised $37,000.
This year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, organizers have come up with a different approach to the event, which they are calling “The Fortunate Bowl.”
Kristen Swanson, a Lovettsville-based artist and president of Loudoun Empty Bowls, said she believes this approach will be just as exciting as past years’. Swanson has been working with seven other board members on the new concept, which launches next month.
While there will not be the usual dinner gathering with soup, bread and dessert, participants are able to purchase a ticket online for $50 between July 1 and Sept. 10. This will serve as a donation to receive a handmade bowl.
In previous years, one of the highlights of the event has been the ability to select one of the unique, artist-crafted bowls. This year, the bowls will be pre-selected, wrapped and given as a surprise.
“The founding principle is the bowl is a gift in exchange for your donation and support. The bowls are a reminder of the empty bowls in our community. We wanted to ensure this event happened because the beneficiaries need as much as possible this year,” Swanson said.
She said there is no limit to the number of sales, and the artists will continue to make bowls as people purchase tickets. Normally, there are about 500 guests, and about 80 volunteers and restaurants contribute to the event.
“The bowls will all be beautiful. There are at least 15 artists participating,” Swanson said.
In addition to the tickets, there will be an online auction and raffle. More information can be found at loudounemptybowls.org.