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Empty Bowls Fills the Grove in Downtown Boise

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- For Duane Andrews (right) and so many like him, Empty Bowls is a holiday tradition. -  - HARRISON BERRY
  • Harrison Berry
  • For Duane Andrews (right) and so many like him, Empty Bowls is a holiday tradition.
The line to get into the Grove downtown stretched around the block as hundreds queued up for the annual Idaho Foodbank fundraiser Empty Bowls. For $10, attendees purchase a bowl made by local artists and ceramic shops, then get the bowl filled with soup made by some of the top chefs in town. For Duane Anders, going to the Grove the day after Thanksgiving is about more than lunch, though.

"We love the idea of feeding our bellies but also feeding our souls, I guess," Anders said. "We're hungry to make a difference."

According to the Idaho Foodbank, one in seven Idahoans will face food insecurity this year, and the goal with Empty Bowls, now in its 19th year, is to raise $40,000 for the organization—last year, the event pulled in $35,000. Idaho Foodbank spokesman Mike Sharp couldn't say how many people came to Empty Bowls this year, but he said a line had formed to get into the event well before the first soup had been ladled.

"[The line] was back behind Lucky Finns before we even opened," Sharp said. "The weather helps."