Empty Bowls


The first workday for the 2018 Empty Bowls luncheon will be held on Friday, May 18th from 9-4 at the Dona Ana Communnity College Ceramics Studio at 2545 Nevada Avenue, next to Rawson Building supply.  El Caldito will provide a deliciious lunch for all the potters.  On Saturday, May 19th the studio will be available from 1-4 pm for more work on Empty Bowls. Please stop by and help out with this important community service project. And besides, its a fun way to spend the day!


Another work day or two will be scheduled for the month of June.




The 25th Empty Bowls luncheon was held last year on October 20, 2017. By all accounts it was a great success.  Over 1200 bowls were available to people to select from and approximately $26,000 was raised. More information will be posted as it becomes available. Many hands particiapated in making his happen, with all proceeds going to the El Caldito Soup Kitchen for a very worthy cause. Work days will be scheduled beginning in the summer for bowl making at the DACC Ceramics Studio, 2345 Nevada Avenue, between Walnut and Triviz.


The 24th Empty Bowls luncheon was held Friday, October 21, 2016. Many happy patrons picked out lovely bowls made by Potters' Guild members and friends and enjoyed delicious soups generously donated by local businesses.  Lunch was served from 11 am to 2 pm at St. Paul's United Methodist Church, 225 S. Griggs.  Tickets were $20.

Glenn Schwaiger hosted a work day at the new DACC ceramic studio at the Workforce Center on Nevada on September 16th and 17th.  More than 225 bowls were made.  El Caldito provideded lunch at the all day work shop in September.

Members make bowls during work days, scheduled to provide an opportunity for everyone to get together. Mari Blacker (above) hand builds bowls during the first work day at the Museum studio.  The second work day was scheduled for June 26th at the Williams Hall Ceramics Studio.  Many volunteers worked from 9-4 and helped make 180 bowls.  Bowls were thrown on the wheels available and there were several hand builders.  El Caldito provided lunch.  Even people with no experience helped produce the hundreds of bowls needed each year.


The first workdays at the beginning of June were very successful, resulting in about 125 new bowls! Molly Wilkenson (above) gets ready to contribute to the total by throwing a bowl of her own.  Members traveled from as far away as Alamogordo to contribute their time and energy.  Workdays in July will be announced soon and will be held at the Museum of Art's ceramics studio downtown.  Members will meet there from 9-4 on Friday and Saturday and lunch will be provided by El Caldito. Dates will be posted ASAP. 

Tickets were sold at the following locations: Berino Sewing and Design 1601 E. Lohman, Boudreaux Jewelers and Gallery 2001 E. Lohman #15, Cutter Gallery 2650 El Paseo, Main Street Bistro 139 N. Main, Friendly Flowers 2525 N. Main, Mountain View Market 1300 El Paseo, N.M. Spanish Kitchen 2960 N. Main, Save Mart 495 N. Valley Drive, Spirit Winds 2260 S. Locust, The Potteries (Mesilla) 2260 Calle de Santiago, Color Your World 540 N. Telshor. Tickets were also bought directly from El Caldito Soup Kitchen 999 W. Amador. 

  • Another successful Empty Bowls was enjoyed in 2016 by over 750 patrons on an lovely fall day at the St. Paul's United Methodist Church.  Scores of volunteers set up tables and chairs, canopies and bowls in preparation for the event.  Over 45 local restaurants donated soup, bread and drinks for the luncheon.  We are happy to report the Guild raised $24,842.18 for El Caldito.

  • Approximately 950 bowls were sold in 2016 and nearly all the Silent Auction items were bid on.  Many people bought raffle tickets for the quilt that was generously donated by the members of the La Colchera Quilt Society.  Marina Lungstrom and friend volunteer during the luncheon (above). 

In the image above, Jan Archey demonstrates how to throw a bowl to some interested patrons during the luncheon at St. Paul's United Methodist Church.


In 1993, the first Empty Bowls event in New Mexico was organized by the members of the PGLC and hosted by St. Paul's United Methodist Church.  Members made 600 bowls and raised $3,650 for the local soup kitchen, El Caldito.  Soup kitchen volunteers helped serve delicious soups donated by local restaurants.  At the end of the meal, the bowl was taken home as a remembrance of the many hungry people living in our community.

Since that first luncheon, over 21,500 bowls have been made by Guild members and friends in studios across the desert Southwest.  Countless hours have been spent working on the steering committee, making, decorating and firing bowls, selling tickets, distributing posters and flyers, coordinating work days, packing and counting bowls and working the luncheon.

Last year, 2014, was the 21st year for the fund raiser,  Over 1200 bowls were made and $20,000 raised for El Caldito.  We have estimated that over $280,000 has been raised since 1993, with all proceeds going to the soup kitchen.


Silent Auction

The Guild also sponsors a Silent Auction with an opening reception held during the October Ramble in front of the Rio Grande Theatre on the downtown mall.  This year the Ramble was held downtown during the October Ramble from 5-7 pm. Guild members and local artists generously contribute one of a kind pieces for the public to bid on.