Roberta Hawks stands with bowls that artists donated to the Empty Bowl Fundraiser.

Photo by Erin Fenner

Roberta Hawks stands with bowls that artists donated to the Empty Bowl Fundraiser.

Empty Bowl Fundraiser to raise money for community kitchen in Craig

The fundraiser will be at St. Michael Catholic Church from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday.

Tickets will cost $15 for adults, $10 for children and $45 for immediate families.

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These bowls come with a ticket to the Empty Bowls Fundraiser.

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Roberta Hawks crafts a bowl that will be donated to the Empty Bowls Fundraiser.

Philanthropic potters have been working seven months to prepare for the St. Michael Community Kitchen’s biggest fundraiser of the year.

A group of seven local artists crafted about 300 to 400 bowls for the Empty Bowl Fundraiser that will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at St. Michael Catholic Church. People who attend will get a hand-thrown ceramic bowl, soup and entertainment from the Cedar Mountain String Quartet.

About 95 percent of the proceeds will go directly into St. Michael’s food fund. The rest will cover expenses.

“That money pays for food that is served all throughout the year,” said Robin Schiffbauer, coordinator for the community kitchen.

That food fund means St. Michael can provide a meal to about 250 people per week.

The idea for the Empty Bowl Fundraiser came from a local artist, Schiffbauer said.

That local artist, Roberta Hawks, was inspired by the national fundraiser, Empty Bowls, that brings creative-types and goodwill together in a project that is aesthetically charged and charitable.

“This community is a very generous community,” she said. “I think St. Michael’s has a special place in people’s hearts.”

Once she heard about the idea, Hawks knew she had to carry it out here in Craig, where the community is enthusiastic to work together to help neighbors in need.

“There are a lot of incredibly talented people in this valley,” Hawks said. “The artists that I have met and that I know are very generous.”

Hawks got started on the project as soon as she knew St. Michael wanted to go ahead with the fundraiser. She started crafting ceramic bowls, working with other artists and getting the word out.

“It’s definitely been a community effort,” she said.

Since May, Hawks made more than 60 bowls. She still considers herself a beginner when it comes to throwing clay; but Hawks can turn a brown lump of clay into a bowl in about 10 minutes. Hawks has been working on this skill for about seven years, since she started taking classes at Colorado Northwestern Community College. She appreciates the local art community and wants to provide more outlets for people to share their work.

This is the perfect outlet, she said, not only because of the bowls, but because of a silent auction that will feature art and jewelry created by local artists.

“That is the hallmark of the Empty Bowl Fundraiser,” she said. “It’s local.”

St. Michael regularly has hosted an annual fundraiser, but this idea is special, Schiffbauer said. This could become a regular fundraiser.

“We think this fundraiser will be the set one from now to the future,” she said.

Hawks is excited to bring artists together to help those in need.

“I think it’s a great way for people to just continue to support a really important part of our community,” she said.

Erin Fenner can be reached at 970-875-1794 or efenner@CraigDailyPress.com.

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