Upper Valley Empty Bowls Goes Virtual in 2021

Submitted by Diane Priebe

Colorful artist bowls like these will be available through the on-line auction
2021 marks a significant year for our Upper Valley Empty Bowls (UVEB) Festival in many ways– first of all it’s our 25th anniversary! It is also a year impacted by the pandemic, where our Community Cupboard food bank needs our support more than ever. The UVEB Festival typically raises over $15,000 each year, which funds 50 percent of the yearly Community Cupboard’s food budget each year. This donation helps to stock its food shelves and provide food boxes to over 1000 local households annually. Sadly, due to the pandemic, for the first time ever we will not be able to gather together with our community to paint bowls during Glazing Days, or to share a community soup supper in March. 
Although these community gatherings will be missed, there will be other ways for you to participate in the UVEB Festival and to raise funds for the Community Cupboard, which is a lifeline for hundreds of our local families. That’s right, this year the Upper Valley Empty Bowls Festival will be going virtual!
In celebration of our 25th year of celebrating community, art and giving, the online Artist Bowl Auction will be held this March. As a highlight for this special year, 25 local artists will be creating one-of-a-kind bowls or platters that will be featured for online bidding. 
The Auction dates will be announced at a later time on the UVEB website www.uvemptybowls.org and Facebook site, and The Leavenworth Echo and Cashmere Valley Record newspapers, so check back!
Another way to participate is by making a donation to Upper Valley Empty Bowls. Though we would be grateful for households to donate what they would have normally spent on participating in UVEB, for those inclined to donate $50.00 or more, they will be entered into a drawing to receive one of 25 bowl painting kits. These kits will include a hand thrown soup bowl, glazes, brushes and the final firing. There will be more than one way to enter into the drawing, so watch for these opportunities yet to be announced on the UVEB website and Facebook. Donations can be made on the UVEB website.
UVEB will be hosting an “Empty Bowls of the Future,” a pre-school through high-school coloring challenge to decorate a virtual bowl. Winners will be featured on the UVEB website and Facebook page, as well as included in a drawing for a bowl painting kit. 
See our website for details and to download copies of the coloring challenge. The challenge will last until February 12, and all entries must be in by then to be eligible for the bowl painting kit drawings. Final drawings can be uploaded to uvemptybowls@gmail.com or handed in to one of the teachers in the Cascade School District, Dan’s food Market, Community Cupboard or Plain Hardware.
Do you have a favorite Empty Bowl that you or someone in your family decorated in previous years? Maybe you have photos of bowls created by a few generations of family? UVEB would like to highlight these “Empty Bowls of the Past” on our UVEB website and Facebook site. Please send electronic photos of bowls to uvemptybowls@gmail.com 
Finally, UVEB is encouraging our Upper Valley community to send in comments and testimonials for what the UVEB Festival has meant to them and their families over the years. The comments will be posted on the UVEB website and Facebook page, and the authors entered into a drawing for a bowl painting kit. Please send your comments and testimonials to uvemptybowls@gmail.com 
Although we can’t yet gather as a community to support the Community Cupboard, please consider participating in our 25th annual virtual UVEB celebration of community and the arts!

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