The work that the Bastrop County Emergency Food Pantry & Support Center does depends on fundraising—through donations, grants and its two annual events. Those events—the Empty Bowl Project and Painting with a Twist Parties have been extremely well attended and much acclaimed; their success is absolutely essential to the Food Pantry to fulfill its mission and to buffer the uncertainty of grant funding.
Save the date: Saturday, October 14th, 2017
Savor the flavors—and the Elgin community’s giving heart—as leading local restaurants and caterers team with the Bastrop County Emergency Food Pantry, the Elgin Community Cupboard and First Baptist Church of Elgin Food Pantry serve up the first-ever “Elgin Empty Bowl Project”.
Communities throughout the U.S. have adopted the “empty bowl” theme as a springboard to educating the public about poverty and to funding local efforts to identify and meet head-on the causes of poverty and to alleviate the food uncertainty of those living in poverty or on the precarious edge of poverty in their communities. In Elgin, that message has added urgency as an increasing number of Elgin area residents reach out for our food assistance help. For many of those, economic recovery from The Great Recession has yet to arrive; many are new requests for help, requests driven by loss of income, serious health issues, loss of shelter or other major threats to their ability to make ends meet.
The Elgin event—from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Elgin ISD Flex Campus (902 W. 2nd) provides attendees an opportunity to sample soups, stews and chilies prepared by some of Elgin’s best chefs in a “battle of the ladles” for bragging rights. Celebrity judges will tag “bests” in each category, and attendees will vote their “fan favorite”. Each ticketed attendee will also take home a hand decorated ceramic soup bowl.
Save the date: Saturday, February 24th, 2018
Bastrop’s event showcases the talents of Bastrop County’s leading restaurants and caterers, each competing for “bragging rights” on their soups, chilies and stews. Attendees each select a pottery bowl artfully decorated by Bastrop ISD students, sample widely the offerings, listen to great local music, shop the silent auction of wonderful original creations donated by area artists and generally have a most delicious time of it.
The event is held on the last Saturday in February, at the Bastrop High School cafeteria, and typically draws more than 600 “very satisfied” attendees. All proceeds, including sponsorship donations, go to the support of the Pantry’s services.
It’s a great way to summon forth your inner artist AND to help the Food Pantry realize its goals: the annual “Painting With A Twist” parties leading up to the Pantry’s Empty Bowl event. While the Empty Bowl event showcases the talents of local chefs, “Painting With A Twist” provides a blank canvas for painters of all ages to try their hand and AND to show their stuff. Classes are usually held in January and February and are very well attended. Lessons are taught by a local ceramics artist and focus on use of color and painting/glazing techniques. All work will be fired thereafter and will add to the decorated bowls distributed to attendees at the end-of-February Empty Bowl event. “Twist” students, however, my claim their work—for the price of an Empty Bowl ticket.
The Food Pantry is proud to be a part of Amplify Austin’s annual “donation-a-thon”, held concurrently in Austin and in other locations to benefit the more than 600 area nonprofits in the seven counties comprising Central Texas.
Held on the first Thursday/Friday in March, the 2017 party for Bastrop County donors was hosted by Neighbor’s Kitchen and Yard in downtown Bastrop.
During this year’s 24-hour fundraising effort, donations to the Food Pantry were matched dollar-for-dollar by the St. David’s Foundation. In addition to this matching program, the Foundation has been a major backer of Food Pantry’s Brown Bag senior nutrition program.
Begun in 2013, Amplify Austin is produced by the “I Live Here, I Give Here” nonprofit foundation, centered in Austin, and has generated more than $25 million for eligible Central Texas nonprofits. For more information, please visit www.AmplifyATX.org. Contributions earmarked for the Food Pantry or for other participating nonprofits may be made throughout the year via that website.