Spring is less than a week away! And what better way to roll into the new season than with a warm bowl of soup, live entertainment, and local artwork…all while benefiting TWO local non-profits?! The 2016 Empty Bowl Project will culminate this Saturday, March 19, at the OC Center for the Arts with the annual Empty Bowl Dinner. It’s a fantastic event that celebrates the efforts of the volunteers who have been visiting the Art League of Ocean City over the past few months to make bowls for the event. Even better, the event raises funding for both Diakonia, our local food pantry, and the Art League of Ocean City.

What is the Empty Bowl Project?

The Empty Bowl Project is an international grassroots effort to fight hunger while utilizing art to raise awareness. Across the world, communities participate in the movement to end hunger; in fact, the Empty Bowl Project is celebrating its 26th year in 2016, marking millions of dollars raised to help fight hunger. Each year, the Art League of Ocean City and Diakonia team up to host our own local version of the initiative. Guests are invited to the ALOC to make pottery bowls that will then be used during the dinner to serve soup. Volunteers are given the option to donate their bowl or purchase it (with funding going to the Empty Bowl Project of course).

Dinner Details

Now that all the bowls have been made and glazed, it’s time to celebrate! This Saturday’s dinner will be held at the OC Center for the Arts from 5-8pm. $20 gets you a delicious meal of soup, breads and desserts, all donated by local restaurants. You will also go home with one of the handmade ceramic bowls, to serve as a reminder of all of the empty bowls around the world. The evening will also include a cash bar, Chinese auctions, live music by Phil Knight, and of course, the chance to view the artwork throughout the OC Center for the Arts.

Local Implications

In Worcester County, the Empty Bowl Project came to fruition in 2013 thanks to the combined efforts of local businesses, community members, the ALOC, and Diakonia. All funds raised go towards the ALOC and Diakonia. Diakonia has been helping individuals and families in Worcester County and on the Lower Shore for the past 40 years, providing shelter, food, clothing and the resources needed to rebuild lives. ‘Help for today and hope for tomorrow’ is their motto, and it’s one that has proven successful in helping serve thousands in need in Worcester County over the past 40 years. In addition to providing shelter and outreach services for the community, Diakonia also operates a food pantry that provides food assistance to hundreds of needy families each month. The Empty Bowl Project serves as one of many valued resources for helping fill the Diakonia food pantry. The ALOC is also a non-profit organization, dedicated to promoting the visual arts in the Ocean City area through education, exhibits, scholarships, programs and community art events.

empty bowl