Local Events


Bradenton, FL, September 4, 2009 - The Food Bank of Manatee, area restaurants, local organizations, and talented potters are coming together for the 9th Annual “Empty Bowls” Luncheon to raise awareness of the critical need for food to help feed the hungry in Manatee County. ArtCenter Manatee and local potters have committed countless hours to create nearly 1,000 unique ceramic bowls which will be given to attendees as they have a meal of soup and bread, symbolic of the hunger struggle in our community.

The event will take place in two locations to accommodate our large community. In Bradenton, the luncheon will be held on Thursday, October 15 at Renaissance on 9th, 1816 9th Street West. The East County luncheon will take place Friday, October 16 on Main Street, Lakewood Ranch. The hours for both events are 11:30 am to 1:30 pm. These date were chosen to coincide with “World Food Day,” an international project to help fight hunger at the local level, which is promoted in many communities across the United States.

Empty Bowls is the primary fundraiser for The Food Bank of Manatee, so it is the perfect opportunity for the community to come together to support the fight against hunger. The 2009 restaurant participants have not yet been announced, but previous participants have included Anna Maria Oyster Bar, Atlanta Bread Company on Manatee Avenue, Astoria Fine Russian Cuisine, Bonefish Grill on Cortez Road, Carrabba’s Italian Market, Euphemia Haye, Ezra a Café, Harry’s Continental Kitchens, MacAllisters Grill and Tavern, Manatee Technical Institute Culinary School, MarVista Dockside Restaurant, Mangrove Grill, Mattison’s Riverside, 9th Street Bistro, Panera Bread on Cortez, Polo Grill and Bar, Stonewood Grill on University Parkway, The Broken Egg and Wild Monkey Gourmet. Live music and a dessert bar will also be provided at both luncheons.

Local sponsors are ABC 7, The Manatee Herald-Tribune, and Global Organic Specialty Source. Additional event partners include Art Center Manatee, Main Street Lakewood Ranch and the Lakewood Ranch Business Alliance. Publix Super Markets, First Bank, and the Highwater Clay Company are also participating, with contributions of fresh-baked bread, bottled water, and clay to make the ceramic bowls.

Tickets to the event are $20.00 each, sold at the door. For more information please visit www.foodbankofmanatee.org or call 941-749-0100.