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For the twentieth year, Utah State University Eastern will be serving up steaming bowls of soup and homemade bread along with a healthy dish of charity at its popular Bread ‘N Soup Nights. Beginning Monday, Nov. 5, all are invited to share a simple meal as a fundraiser for the Carbon County Food Bank. Bread ‘N Soup Night will also be hosted on Nov. 12 and 19.
Since 1997, USU Eastern has donated a total of $53,524.80 to the Carbon County Food Bank. According to the Utah Food Bank website, every dollar donated can be turned into “$7.48 in goods and services for Utahns facing hunger.” For Carbon County, the funds donated to the food bank from Bread ‘N Soup Night over its twenty-year run could potentially have stretched to $400,365.50. But the website also notes that “1 in 6 Utah kids are unsure where their next meal is coming from.” And DeeDee Teuscher, director of the Carbon County Food Bank, has seen “quite a few new members” at the food bank recently, and she expects to see a lot more closer to the holidays.
“It’s so important to support these families in need,” stressed Terry Johnson, Director of USU Eastern’s SUN Center and planning committee member. “It breaks your heart to see what some of these people are going through,” he added.
Original founding member of Bread ‘N Soup Night and associate professor of English Carrie Icard reflects on her twenty-year commitment to Bread ‘N Soup Night. She recalls the very first year when it “wasn’t clear whether anyone would show up at all!”
She said that the food bank has come to rely on the university’s donation, “and that’s satisfying, but I always feel like we can do a little bit better. Even so, at 5 p.m. on that first Monday evening of November, I watch in nervous, but hopeful anticipation as the people of Carbon County filter into the doors of the student center. And they’ve never failed to show up. I always wonder what makes someone unconnected with the university come out on a cold November night in support of this event. I believe it’s the combination that Bread ‘N Soup Night offers: the comfort of a simple, warm meal, the interaction with others in the community, and the knowledge that they are doing something to help someone else in need. It’s been a winning combination for 20 years.”
Patrons can expect some of the all-time favorites like chicken noodle, cream of potato, chili and cheesy broccoli to be on the menu during the three Monday nights. Emily Bradley, USUE Director of Campus Events/Dining Services, is working diligently with her vendors to donate much of the soup in hopes of cutting costs, thereby adding to the final donation.
Bread ‘N Soup Night takes place between 5 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. in the Multi-Purpose room of USU Eastern’s Jennifer Leavitt Student Center. Prices are $7 for adults and students 18 and older, and $6 for students 5-17. Children under five are admitted free with a paying adult. For the price of admission, each person receives two tickets good toward one bowl of soup and one piece of bread apiece, with children under five each receiving one ticket. Additional tickets may be purchased for $2 per bowl. Everyone is welcome.