Dear Editor – Empty Bowl Event

Dear Editor,
The HEAL Empty Bowl Event was hosted at Mt. Annie’s Center for the Arts in Ruidoso on Sunday, October 28th.  A local’s favorite, this third annual charity event was well-attended by bustling supporters of the Nest, who packed the galleries and tasting rooms.  At the top of the long list of folks to thank for this remarkable fundraiser are Jamie & Shirley Estes, owners of Mt. Annie’s.  The Center provided an elegant and warm environment for our guests.

Josie Powell of Josie’s Framery hosted the HEAL Committee that planned the event.  Besides making countless bowls herself, she also enlisted the aid of Alan Miner and Rene Bradley of the Gazebo Potters in midtown. They even came into the shelter to help the women and kids at the Nest participate by making several bowls.  All told, many individuals, churches, businesses, organizations and our HEAL family came together to make the beautiful bowls that cradled our fall soups at the event.

We are very grateful to Brendan and Audrey Gochenour, who joined our HEAL Team in the early planning stages.  Brendan, a Chef by training, coordinated the Nest Best Soup competition.  He invited local foodies and Chefs from restaurants in our area.  It was a fierce competition, with the prize being bragging rights for the next year and a HEAL Appreciate Plaque. 

Many thanks to the brave souls who entered this competitive race:  Shannon Silva from Zocca Coffee, Laura Weaver, Waynette Walker, Elizabeth Frey and Pastor Charles Clary from the JBarJ Church, Zana from IGA Lawrence Brothers, Curtis Williamson of Schlotzkys, Paul & Susan Kolb on behalf of the Disabled Skiers Program, staff and residents of the NEST, Village Buttery, Sue Lovett Francis, Mrs. Ruidoso 2012 Amber Buster, Sue Hutchison, Jeremy Sheehan from Billy The Kid Casino, JR from Dream Catcher Catering and C and C Consulting, Judy Beaver and Shawn from Ranchers Restaurant.  The top two winners were separated by only one vote.  We will announce the winners next week.

To finish off a fall meal of homemade soups in homemade bowls, Audrey Gochenour coordinated the baking of homemade cookies.  The array of choices was astounding.  Thanks to Audrey and her baking elves, the Gochenour children, and Lynn & Mike Myers, Susanne Francis, Jessica Francis Martinez, Josie Powell, the staff and residents of the Nest and all of the other kind bakers who parted with their best cookies to support the Nest.

Once again, our business and artist friends in the community stepped up to the plate.  We received countless, lovely donations of beautiful photographs, framed pictures, pottery, a crocheted poncho, jewelry, native hangings and gift certificates.  The offerings were impressive!

And, as always, our HEAL Board of Directors, committee members, staff of the Nest and many members of our families joined in to help as volunteers. Tomas Vigil honored us with his beautiful classical guitar in the lobby, perfectly placed to greet our guests.

How very blessed we are.  Thank you to everyone who helped with the 2012 Empty Bowl Event.  We will see you next October for a repeat performance!

Coleen Widell
Executive Director

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