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10 years of empty bowls and full bellies

For its 10th year in a row, a school in Jessamine County will host an annual luncheon that allows visitors to keep the bowls they eat from.

Students in Liz Spurlock’s art class at The Providence School in Wilmore will be wearing T-shirts that say “10 years and still hungry for a good cause, while they serve food to the community.

One thing that makes the meal different is that visitors get to keep the bowl they ate from.

All year long, students in an art class at The Providence School learn how to do the various tasks it takes to make a bowl, such as turning pottery wheels, using a kiln and the glazing process.

“The kids are working their tails off,” said Spurlock, who started the Empty Bowls Luncheon after encountering similar fundraisers as a student at Eastern Kentucky University.

“I decided we needed a service project for our kids,” she said.

Each bowl takes around 10 to 20 hours to complete, and the students hand-paint each one.

Last year, students raised around $3,000, Spurlock said. They sold so many bowls that they had to use ones they created the year before.

This year, she said they anticipate making over 350 bowls.

The money made from the Empty Bowl Luncheon will go toward buying supplies for the next year, and to various organizations and people in need in the community. Last year, Spurlock said some of the money was put into the Backpack Program at the school, which is responsible for sending students home with food they may not have otherwise over the weekend.

The luncheon is first come, first serve. This particular luncheon will feature a student made Powerpoint that shows the events progress over the past 10 years.

“The students have worked really hard,” Spurlock said.

Each meal costs $10 per person, and comes with a soup, sandwich, drink and a dessert. After visitors have finished their meal, students will wash and package the bowls for them to take home.

Not only do the students make the bowls, they also make and serve the food as well.

“They totally own this project,” Spurlock said. “It is a student generated project.”

The Empty Bowls Luncheon will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 8 in The Providence School Cafeteria.