Twelve local Lexington restaurants will contribute soup for sampling in the first “Souper Bowl” to benefit the Weekend Backpack Program of the Campus Kitchen at Washington and Lee on Sunday, Jan. 27, at Evans Hall on the W&L Campus.
The event, which will run from 11 a.m to 2 p.m., will feature live entertainment and a festive atmosphere and will highlight each partner restaurant.
Participating restaurants are Red Hen, Southern Inn, Blue Sky Bakery, Healthy Foods Co-op, Salernos, Sweet Treats, Sheridan Livery, Brixx, eCafe, Nikos, Bistro and Lexington Country Club. The suggested donation is $10 for students, $15 for adults and a maximum of $40 per family.
Lori Frascati, director of Client Service at Davidson & Garrard and one of the organizers of the event, said: “Campus Kitchen at Washington and Lee’s Weekend Backpack Program started in 2009 as a partnership between Campus Kitchen and Natural Bridge Elementary School, and has expanded to cover all seven elementary schools in the Rockbridge area. This vital program delivers backpacks filled with non-perishable food to the schools and targets children who are eligible for free or reduced lunches.”
Jenny Davidson, another event organizer and coordinator of Student Service Learning at W&L, added that the children eligible for the backpacks are guaranteed lunch Monday through Friday and “now, by sending food home with them in backpacks on Friday night, CKWL ensures they have food over the weekend . The program provides snacks for over 400 local elementary school students who deal with hunger on a regular basis.”
The Souper Bowl, Davidson said, is one more effort to tackle childhood hunger in the Lexington and Rockbridge area.
Campus Kitchen at Washington and Lee involves numerous W&L student volunteers who have been active in the backpack program by packing and delivering the packs each week.
"My involvement with the Campus Kitchens has helped shape my career at Washington and Lee,” said Kathryn Marsh-Soloway, the student organizer for the Souper Bowl and a senior from Woodbridge, Conn. “It has helped me connect to the community in which I live. The program has increased awareness of hunger issues amongst students, community members, and works to combat a much larger scale problem.”
As a percentage of the student body, the number of students who receive the backpacks ranges from 20.12% at Harrington Waddell Elementary to 64.21 % at Natural Bridge Elementary. The average of all elementary schools in the program is 45%.
The organizers hope the event will raise thousands of dollars to benefit the program, an essential part of tackling childhood hunger locally.
For additional information or to volunteer, contact Lori Frascati at 540-464-9100 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jeffery G. Hanna
Executive Director of Communications and Public Affairs