Kutztown Thriving and Kutztown Community Partnership hosted the Souper Holiday Luncheon at The Main Street Inn, during KCP’s Christmas in Kutztown on Dec. 2. All proceeds will be donated to the Kutztown University Student Food Pantry.
“We organized the Souper Holiday Luncheon to benefit the KU Student Food Pantry. We recognize a need for the students on campus and we put together this soup luncheon,” said Jackie Downing, Kutztown Thriving’s art initiatives lead, which is a subcommittee of KCP. “We’ve had great response so far in the form of donations. People have been really interested and excited and happy to donate. Now, we’re hoping for a great turnout eating.”
Soup was served from noon to 4 p.m. so people could come and go as hunger strikes.
“We’re hoping to get a lot of draw from downtown for Christmas in Kutztown,” she said. “Having a community lunch provides opportunity for people to come and sit with other community members and learn about what we’re doing at Kutztown Thriving. It’s all eco-friendly and holistic work to benefit the community.”
All of the soups were donated by community members or businesses and all of the homemade breads were donated by community members. A long table was set up with about a dozen different soups. The purchase of a meal included soup, bread and a drink, as well as the vintage keepsake bowl.
“We’re doing an eco-friendly lunch so we’re using reusable napkins and you get to pick a keepsake bowl when you arrive and you get to take that with you as a memento of your lunch,” said Downing.
In regard to the location of the event, Downing said The Main Street Inn has been very helpful to Kutztown Thriving by hosting several of their events. Also, a representative of the Inn serves on Kutztown Thriving.
“It’s such a beautiful location,” said Downing. “We’re glad to have it at such a great place.”
The luncheon was held outside on the Inn’s covered patio where attendees could sit at tables or by a warm fire.
Proceeds from the luncheon will be donated to a fund for the KU Student Food Pantry which offers food to KU students.
“We often think that perhaps because they have meal plans or they’re living in student housing that they aren’t struggling with other needs and they definitely are,” said Downing.
Leah Cassellia, KU director of student involvement, said the KU Food Pantry in an initiative that comes from the KU student involvement office with a partnership with Friend Inc. and The Lutheran Center.
“Today’s event is incredible. It’s an awesome way for the community to come together to support the KU student food pantry through eating warm, delicous homemade soups,” said Cassellia. “We are very grateful for Kutztown Thriving for choosing the KU student food pantry as the beneficiary of this event.”
Cassellia said the KU food pantry has helped hungry KU students for the past couple of years.
“When you’re hungry, it’s very hard to concentrate and it can create a lot of anxiety and worry. We really have been trying to assist students in getting nutrious food so that they can focus and concentrate and also to have one less worry,” she said. “This has really helped our students to be able to focus on their academic work.”
Kutztown Thriving seeks new volunteers to join them and the other KCP committees.