Eat for a good cause at Empty Bowl Sunday

Empty Bowl Brunch benefits Feeding the Valley
Empty Bowl Brunch benefits Feeding the Valley

You eat a great meal. You keep a unique bowl. You help needy children.

What could be better?

And that is what the Empty Bowl Brunch is all about.

This year, the annual event, a Columbus tradition since 1993, will be Sunday from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the Northside Recreation Center, 2010 American Way.

Money raised benefits the Kid’s Café program of the Feeding the Valley Food Bank, a program which provides 6,225 hot, nutritional meals and snacks each week to low income children at 12 locations in Columbus and Phenix City.

Columbus Parks and Recreation sponsors the fundraiser along with Feeding the Valley, a community partner of the United Way of the Chattahoochee Valley.

Lisa Castile, recreation program supervisor- cultural arts, has been with the Columbus Parks and Recreation for 20 years and believes the brunch is a wonderful idea.

“Feeding the Valley and our department have the same goals. We are working together to make a better Columbus,” Castile said.

She said the 2016 event raised $11,620 for Feeding the Valley.

Tickets for the brunch are $15 for adults and $5 for children under 12.

Ticket holders select a bowl and then stuff themselves with soups, breads, desserts and drinks.

This year, there will be between 1,200 and 1,500 bowls available. Castile said about 700 were handmade by people at Columbus recreation centers. Others were purchased and then painted by local children.

“They are all different and beautiful,” she said.

Among the Items on the menu include potato soup, chicken noodle soup, egg drop soup and French onion soup.

But one does not live on soup alone.

Chili, Brunswick stew and chicken and dumplings will also be served.

There will be a large assortment of breads.

Cookies, brownies and banana pudding are just a few of the treats offered.

Among the restaurants participating are Texas Roadhouse, Logan’s Roadhouse, Longhorn Steakhouse, Chester’s Barbecue, Country’s Barbecue, O’Charley’s, Speakeasy, Chef Lee’s Peking Restaurant, CiCi’s Pizza, Panera Bread, Ruth Ann’s Restaurant, Sam’s Cakes, Twelfth Street Deli, Golden Corral, and Cracker Barrel.

Groocery stores Fresh Market, Piggly Wiggly and Publix will also provide items.

Local organizations and friends including Ashley Station Apartments , Pacelli, Omega Psi Phi and Fort Service Learning Academy will help. Members of the Manchester High School Band will be in attendance.

Credit cards except American Express may be used. Tickets may be purchased in advance at Britt David Cultural Arts Studio, 2700 W. Britt David Road. Call 706-653-4196 for information.

Larry Gierer: 706-571-8581, @lagierer