The Empty Bowl Project Fights Hunger | One in Five People in Iowa Are Food Insecure

Fill these bowls with food!

The Empty Bowls Project is holding a hunger-fighting event on Sunday, October 20, from 1 to 4 p.m. at Morning Star Studio. Venue-owners Jewel and Brian McDonald have generously donated the space.

Worldwide, one in eight people is chronically undernourished. Here in Iowa, one in five is considered food insecure. Since 1970, the Empty Bowls Project has brought people together to raise awareness and funds to fight these growing problems.

The premise is simple: potters make bowls and others provide soup and bread. For a minimum donation of $25, participants enjoy a simple communal meal and then are asked to keep their bowls as a reminder of all the empty bowls in the world. Each group selects the organizations they wish to support. The Fairfield group has chosen Oxfam International and the Iowa City-based Table to Table. They will also be sponsoring a food drive for Fairfield’s local food pantry, The Lord’s Cupboard. If you bring a non-perishable food item to the event, you will be entered in a drawing for a large handmade serving bowl.

There will be speakers, live music, and an art lottery; and of course warm soup, homemade bread, and an array of bowls to choose from. The bowls have been generously donated by Peace Project Ceramics, Mara Winningham, Mark Wilkins, Chris Scamehorn, Kasie Clemmons, Genevra Bell, Dorothy Rowe, and many others. More help is needed, however. To volunteer at the event, make bowls, or cook soup, please call Mara Winningham at (319) 331-6197 or email If you’d like to bake bread, contact Susanna Harwin at (641) 233-7458 or email