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Empty Bowls

Screen Shot 2014-02-05 at 11.20.18 AMOregon Potters Association coordinates an annual fund-raiser at the Safeway Waterfront Blues Festival to benefit Oregon Food Bank. OPA collects hundreds of pottery donations of all types, sizes and shapes throughout the year. OPA members then sell the donated pottery—often at bargain prices—at the Empty Bowls booth, near the main gate, at the Waterfront Blues Festival.

This years event is July 4th – 8th at Portland’s Waterfront Park.

This is a very special year for the Empty Bowls Project.   OPA is celebrating its 20th anniversary of the event and should surpass $250,000 in net donations to help fight hunger in Oregon and Clark County, Wash. Read more about Empty Bowls to Fight Hunger.

The planning for this event began with a phenomenal Collaboration project held at Georgie’s last December chaired by Michael Metz.  Over 400 pieces were made to be sold at the Empty Bowls Event.   We are grateful to all of the OPA members who came to throw, trim, and glaze the pots.  Big thanks goes to the Georgie’s staff for providing the facilities to throw, trim, glaze and fire the pottery as well as a donation of 500 lbs of clay for the event.

Pat Brame, co-chair of this year’s event also hosted 10 potters at Saint Helens Highschool for a trow-a-thon where 70 additional pieces were created.  The other co-chairs of the Empty Bowls Event (Mickie Harshman and Bill Sanchez) were present along with the 1st chair of the Event (Mary Walyer) and long-time contributors, Mark Heimann, Chayo Wilson and Jen Tonneson.

Many local schools have been busy making bowls for the Empty Bowls project.  Pat Brame’s students were busy again making bowls for their senior projects.  Margaret Synan-Russel at the Oregon Episcopal School is donating numerous bowls made at as part of OES’s Community service projects. Gay Lyon with PCC’s SE Center will be volunteering again at the event has once again donated several boxes of pots from their newly established ceramics program.    We know there are several others in our community that are doing similar things to help us accumulate the pottery needed to put on the event and raise money for the hungry in our community.

All proceeds from Empty Bowls benefit Oregon Food Bank and its work to eliminate hunger and its root causes … because no one should be hungry.

Empty Bowls

The empty bowl symbolizes hunger and poverty faced by people throughout the world. A group of Michigan potters created Empty Bowls in 1991. The program is now a fund-raising project in nearly all 50 states.

Distribution of Emergency Food throughout Oregon and Clark County, Wash., has reached record levels, according to Oregon Food Bank. In an average month, more than 210,000 people rely on food from emergency food boxes to stave off hunger in Oregon and Clark County, Wash. Of those, 36 percent are children.

Oregon Food Bank is a nonprofit, charitable organization. It is the hub of a the Oregon Food Bank Network, a statewide network of 20 regional food banks and 915 hunger-relief agencies serving Oregon and Clark County, Wash.

Read more about the Oregon Food Bank and the Waterfront Blues Festival.