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The Shepherd’s Staff’s annual Empty Bowls event seeks to bring Carroll County community together for those in need

The Shepherd’s Staff’s Empty Bowls of Carroll County event was created to bring awareness to hunger of all types, foster community, and raise funds to support people in need.

The Christian outreach and support center will host its fifth annual Empty Bowls event on Sunday, March 21 at St. John’s Catholic Church’s Portico in Westminster. Those in attendance can purchase an Empty Bowls Experience pack online for contact-less curbside pickup at 2 p.m., 3 p.m. or 4 p.m., according to a news release from The Shepherd’s Staff.

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For $30 per ticket, guests will “Combat Hunger, One Bowl at a Time” and will be provided with a bowl handcrafted by Shiloh Pottery and a Culinary Adventure Card and Map featuring 20 local businesses, according to the release.

The card can be used through Dec. 31 and guests can use it to enjoy soup at 18 of the county’s best restaurants as well as have the opportunity to experience coffee and popcorn from two additional locations.

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“One of the most heartwarming pieces of this event is the community coming together in many, many ways,” Executive Director Brenda Meadows said. “We’re able to engage with the communities and see the folks that are supporting us and see them enjoying the soups and the offerings and just being able to chat with them and talk about what’s happening and how they’re helping.”

Meadows said these one-of-a-kind bowls serve as a reminder of those whose bowls remain empty and she hopes the funds raised can help people in need fulfill the hunger in their lives, whether it’s a hunger for communication with someone or hunger for financial stability.

The Shepherd's Staff will host its fifth annual Empty Bowls event on Sunday, March 21 at St. John’s Catholic Church’s Portico in Westminster.
The Shepherd's Staff will host its fifth annual Empty Bowls event on Sunday, March 21 at St. John’s Catholic Church’s Portico in Westminster.

People who visit participating businesses by May 31 will be entered into a prize drawing and three winners will receive $150 worth of giftcards from participating restaurants. All proceeds from the event benefit the Shepherd’s Staff Emergency and Crisis Assistance Program, according to the release.

Tickets can be purchased online at go.rallyup.com/shepstaffemptybowls and supporters will also have the chance to purchase limited edition long-sleeve t-shirts to complete their Empty Bowls experience.

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Soups will be provided and served by the following restaurants: Baugher’s, Blue Bistro, Bud’s at Silver Run, The Buttersburg Inn, The Food Chick, Forbidden City, Giulianova Groceria, Greenmount Station, Maggie’s, Mediterraneo Ristorante Italiano, Molli’s Café, O’Lourdan’s Irish Pub, Oscar’s Alehouse, Rafael’s, Rare Opportunity Bakehouse, RockSalt Grille, Sykesville Station, and Uncle Matty’s Eatery. Coffee will be provided by Furnace Hills Coffee and popcorn will be provided by The Caramel Kettle.

“Since we haven’t been able to engage with the community to have the bowl-making parties, Shiloh Pottery is in the process of making those bowls for us,” Meadows said. “I think they’ve made about 200 to date and they are amazing. Because we had to limit tickets this year to 300 versus our normal 600, we also made limited edition T-shirts, which are adorable. …

“It’s indicative of what we’re having to do this year to pull this off.”

For more information on the event as well as sponsorship opportunities, please contact The Shepherd’s Staff at 410-857-5944 or info@shepstaff.org.

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