On the Town: Filling empty bowls with promise

Ceramic artists are making a statement with their pottery pieces while raising funds to help homeless families.

The third annual Empty Bowl fundraiser benefits Family Promise of the East San Fernando Valley. The event is from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. June 2 at the First United Methodist Church of Glendale, 134 N. Kenwood St., Glendale. Proceeds provide safe shelter, meals and support to homeless families.

Area artists are creating one-of-a-kind bowls and donating them to the fundraiser. Guests can choose a bowl and fill it with one of several soups donated by local restaurants. An assortment of donated breads and desserts accompany the meal. Then everyone takes their bowls home as a reminder of the hunger and uncertainty homeless families face daily.

Last year, more than 300 bowls left the building in happy hands, said bowl Chairwoman Barbara Lazar, who has been a pottery student at the Burbank Creative Arts Center for 10 years.

"I start out in January bugging everybody I know that makes pottery and it's not just at the Creative Arts Center; it's at the colleges, high schools come to us, individual potters and other pottery studios in the East San Fernando Valley," she said.

One of the event's most passionate potters is Ellissa Weekley of Burbank, who has made more than 80 bowls this year and she keeps adding more.

Her inspiration to create bowls for the fundraiser, she said, is that she believes in the idea of getting people back to work and in a home, especially homeless families with children. Family Promise offers counseling and assistance in getting a job. Weekley also realizes how fortunate she is.

"I just recognize that I just have so much to be thankful for," she said. "Most of it is not material needs, it's just our community, friends and family and being able to help."

Tickets are $30 for adults and $10 for children under 12. For tickets or more information, visit http://www.familypromiseesfv.org, email tickets@FamilyPromiseESFV.org or call (747) 333-6081.


JOYCE RUDOLPH can be contacted at rudolphjoyce10@gmail.com.

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