Potters understand recycling.
They hang on to every piece of clay they can, reusing scraps so nothing goes to waste, said Deb Babcock, a co-founder of Steamboat Clay Artisans.
So it makes sense that Yampa Valley Recycles, a nonprofit organization that promotes recycling in the area, was named as the beneficiary of funds raised at the Steamboat Clay Artisans' Soup Bowl Supper this year, Babcock said.
This year brings the third Soup Bowl Supper, a fund-raiser that gives ticket-buyers a unique, handcrafted ceramic bowl, which is made by a local artisan and filled with soup.
Yampa Valley Recycles was one of 13 organizations that applied to benefit from the supper this year, Babcock said, and was chosen to benefit from the fund-raiser last Wednesday.
The recycling group's application stood out because it was creative and because the group had specific plans for spending funds raised at the meal, Babcock said.
Yampa Valley Recycles plans to buy attractive recycling bins for the intersections of Lincoln Avenue and Fifth and Third streets with the funds, Babcock said. One of the pedestrian recycling units already is at the intersection of Lincoln Avenue and Seventh Street. The small units cost about $3,400, while the large units cost about $4,800.
The recycling group had tough competition, Babcock said, and to assist the remaining 12 nonprofits that were not chosen, Steamboat Clay Artisans will donate a ceramic item for use in their own fund-raisers.
Last year, the Soup Bowl Supper sold all of its 300 tickets in advance. Those proceeds, along with funds raised from a silent auction of donated ceramic items, totaled $7,540 and benefited LIFT-UP of Routt County.
A similar response is expected for this year. The date and place of the supper has not yet been determined, but the supper probably will take place in late summer or early fall, Babcock said.
The event offers a chance for potters in the area to reach out to the community and for the community to learn that many clay artisans call the area home, she said.
Although it takes hundreds of hours to prepare for, the Soup Bowl Supper is something the potters love, she said. One of the best parts is watching diners pick their bowls, each of which could have been made by one artist or by efforts from several potters.
"We get the biggest kick out of people when they pick up their bowl and say, 'I love this bowl,'" she said. "It's just the biggest kick to watch people clutching their bowls as they leave."
To help with the project, contact Deb Babcock at 846-9349. To learn more about Yampa Valley Recycles, call the hotline at 870-7575 or go to www.yampavalleyrecycles.org.