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Empty Bowls to Assist Families with Unanticipated Crises
Tuesday, January 16, 2024


It’s time to fill those Empty Bowls.

The annual Empty Bowls soup and salad affair will be held from 11:30 to 2 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 21, at the Church of the Big Wood on Saddle Road in Ketchum.

The proceeds will go to the Blaine County Charitable Fund for the second year in a row to provide emergency financial assistance to Blaine County residents in need of rental assistance and other help.

Guests can purchase ceramic bowls made by Sage School, Syringa Mountain and Trinity school students, Girl Scouts and others at Boulder Mountain Clayworks. The cost is $25 a bowl with a $10 option for children 10 and under to purchase a disposable bowl.

Bowls can be filled with soups, salads, chili, bread and dessert donated by local chefs and caterers. Then diners can settle in, enjoying the camaraderie of friends and neighbors as Jason Shearer and Liz Talley, aka “The Heart Strings,” perform background music.

Diners can choose from more than 300 hand-crafted, hand-painted bowls that run the gamut from artistic bowls to funky bowls depending on one’s taste. Choosing a bowl can be a time-consuming proposition for some people, as they collect the bowls year after year.

Those contributing soups to fill the bowls include Atkinsons’ Market, Bigwood Bread Bakery and Café, The Chocolate Moose, CK’s Real Food, The Covey, Galena Lodge, The Hunger Coalition, Ketchum Grill, Limelight Hotel, Nourish Me, Rasberry’s Catering & Bistro, Sawtooth Brewery, Sun Valley Resort and Warfield Distiller & Brewery.

“Empty Bowls is a great way to give back to our community over the shared joy of a good meal,” said Mary Fauth, executive director of Blaine County Charitable Fund. “This event raises critical funds that go directly back into our community, helping people with emergency expenses like rent, utilities, and other critical needs.”

The fundraiser originally benefitted the Hunger Coalition but was handed over to the Blaine County Charitable Fund in 2023.  It’s sponsored by Blaine County Title, Clear Mind Graphics, Idaho Lumber, Windemere Real Estate, Blaine County Democrats and Sync Vans.

This year members of the Church of the Big Wood are stepping up as volunteers, along with the Blaine County Democrats and even those who have received help from Blaine County Charitable Fund.

Church of the Big Wood selected the Blaine County Charitable Fund as its mission focus this past summer, asking BCCF staff to share stories about how the organization helped the children’s neighbors and possibly even their friends. In response, the children raised more than $1,200 for the organization.

Blaine County Charitable Fund makes grants to Blaine County citizens who need emergency help with housing, utilities, transportation and health care during times of unanticipated crisis. It also makes its resources available during eviction mediation work done by the City of Ketchum Housing Mediation Project to avert eviction. Eviction not only displaces people but causes trauma, disrupts education and jeopardizes health, said Fauth.

“Our emergency rent assistance program stands as a critical lifeline, offering immediate relief to prevent families from reaching the brink of eviction,” she added. “By providing financial support, we mitigate the looming threat of homelessness, stabilizing households and preserving their well-being.”

Want to know more? Call the Blaine County Charitable Fund at 208-244-5205.

Need help? Visit, call 208-244-5205 or stop by BCCF’s Hailey office at 111 N. 1st Ave., Suite 2 in Hailey.

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