Author Archives: Jessica Cramer

About Our Chefs

We have some incredible local chefs providing soup, salad and bread for our 5th Anniversary celebration!

Tony House – Nine and Fleetwood’s

Tony got his culinary education “through the school of hard knocks,” he says. “I paid attention, worked hard and practiced.” Tony has served the kitchens of some of Toledo’s favorite establishments, including Burger Bar 419, Cousino’s Navy Bistro and Grumpy’s Deli. He’s been with the Mud Hens organization for three years and is now the Executive Chef of Nine and Fleetwood’s.

Soup (the food), he says, “in its essence, is comfort. Regardless of the kind of soup it is, it warms the soul.” Tony’s excited to serve up some of that comfort and give back to the community by supporting Toledo SOUP.

The Creole Garlic Bisque he’s cooking up for the event sounds very comfortable, indeed.

Joe Felix – Toledo Museum of Art

Joe’s been in the restaurant business for 19 years. He started at TMA more than 10 years ago as a dishwasher, was mentored by Chef Erika Rapp, and has served as the Executive Chef since 2015.

“Cooking is better,” Joe says, “when we put ourselves into a dish.” When he feels a dish has turned out perfectly, he dances and runs around the museum making everyone try it.

The specialty at the Museum Cafe is the Hand Made Gnocchi and the Maple Smoked Onion Soup which he’ll be bringing to our event on May 21st!

Scott Bowman – Fowl & Fodder

“Soup is so much fun to make and eat!” says Scott. “I love it as an early dinner with some nice cheese, and crusty bread.”

Scott’s passion for cooking sparked when he was a child. Soup takes him back there to fond memories of cooking with his mom. “She taught me so many things necessary in the world, including how to turn old freezer scraps into something delicious on a cold winter day.” Those lessons helped him conceive his Fowl & Fodder concept, which opened on West Central Avenue three years ago.

This isn’t the first time Scott has contributed his culinary delights to Toledo SOUP, either. “Organizations like this strengthen our community. These are the people giving our town its unique persona, and I hope it continues to grow,” he says. He has a special place in his heart for the crowdfunding aspect, too – his successful Kickstarter campaign helped him establish a second Fowl & Fodder location, which will open on Adam’s Street in downtown Toledo this summer.

Scott’s making two soups for our upcoming event – Vegan Zucchini and Cream of Asparagus – with fresh, local produce from Riehm Farms.

Cynthia Bunch – Cynthia’s Catering

After a successful career in advertising and raising her children, Cynthia embarked on her culinary adventure working for Chef JD Wesley at JD Wesley’s Bistro. She started her catering business in 2000 and today serves corporate functions, small and large dinner parties, weddings, cocktail parties and a variety of other events. She also works with nonprofits – yay for us! “I love getting involved with Toledo SOUP and giving back my time and talent to such a worthy organization that helps others start and live their dreams,” Cynthia says.

For this event, Cynthia is making Vichyssoise – a cold potato soup – with cucumber, arugula and watercress.

Kelly Mettler – Cock & Bull

Kelly learned to cook the old-fashioned way – by watching her mother. “I can proudly say I learned most of my cooking skills from her,” she says. Kelly’s mom was a single mother who often worked two jobs to support her daughters, and Kelly remembers that preparing dinner and sitting down to enjoy it as a family was a way for them to spend quality time together.
Cock & Bull opened in 2012 and Kelly jumped at the chances to share her love of food and togetherness with their guests. The pub menu focuses on good, homemade comfort food cooked with quality ingredients and served in hearty, belly-filling portions.

Kelly feels “fortunate to have been able to realize her dreams as an entrepreneur,” so she – and everyone else at Cock & Bull – are “thrilled to support Toledo SOUP’s mission of encouraging and assisting others on their own paths to success.”
She’ll be serving up her Italian Vegetable Soup at the event.

Pam Weirauch – Pam’s Corner

For 15 years, Pam Weirauch (pronounced WHY-rock) has owned Pam’s Corner on 10th Street in downtown Toledo, where she serves up specialty homemade soups and salads. She’s enjoyed watching and being part of the many changes in our downtown district.

The idea of bringing people together with food has always been part of her mission both professionally and personally, so she’s a natural Toledo SOUPer. Pam helped host our first-ever event and has contributed soup to several events over the years. (Who remembers the Dill Pickle Soup? SO GOOD!)

This time, she’s taking our salad course to the next level. Pam’s bringing Pear Salad with spicy pecans, blue cheese and dried cranberries AND a Strawberry Salad with almonds and mandarin oranges.

Eric – Rosie’s Italian Grille

Eric’s our bread man for this event. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Applied Science and he received his culinary training at Monroe County Community College. Early in his career, Eric worked for Pinnacle Catering and he’s been with Rosie’s Italian Grille for nearly two decades.

Eric loves the creativity of soup (the food). “There are limitless possibilities when it comes to soup,” he says. The same can be said for Toledo SOUP, too, and Eric enjoys being involved for “all the good things the organization makes possible.”

He’ll be bringing fresh baked dinner bread for this event.

NEXT EVENT: Cookin’ up FUNds – MAY 21, 2017

 

It’s been five years since a few passionate Toledoans came together to form an organization that raises funds for local initiatives benefitting Toledo and its surrounding communities. Since 2002, Toledo SOUP has hosted 11 crowdfunding events and raised nearly $15,000 in microgrants to support community improvement projects envisioned by local individuals and organizations.

Today, we’re accepting proposals for our 12th event, scheduled for May 21, 2017 at Hensville in the Warehouse District of Downtown Toledo.

Anyone is eligible to submit a proposal for this event, including activists, artists, organizations, theatres, small business owners, and big dreamers. Proposals can be submitted here. We’ll host a workshop in mid-April for those interested in submitting a proposal but are unsure of how to get started.

All proposals submitted by the May 1st deadline will be reviewed by an independent judges panel that will select up to four presenters to share their ideas at the event. The winning proposal will be determined by a majority vote of the event attendees. Proposals submitted after the deadline will be considered for the next event.

Donations from event attendees fund the winning project (determined by popular vote). The organization also hosts a raffle and a bake sale to raise additional funds throughout the evening.

Though we’ve been at this for a few years now, the committee is still “amazed and humbled by the outpouring of support it continues to see from area residents,” says Jessica Miller, Marketing Chair of Toledo SOUP.

Miller added that the organization is “honored to be a catalyst for grassroots change” by regularly bringing community members together to support and fund “seemingly small projects that have a big impact in our region.”

Lyndsey Stough, Event Chair of Toledo SOUP said the organization is “incredibly grateful to the business owners, regional brands and community leaders that have supported Toledo SOUP over the last five years by contributing to our raffle and bake sale, providing soup, bread and beverages, serving as judges and offering corporate sponsorship in support of our mission.”

Businesses, individuals and organizations interested in supporting the Toledo SOUP mission are encouraged to contact the organization via email at ToledoSoup@gmail.com or visit ToledoSoup.org/sponsorship-opportunities for more information.

About Toledo SOUP
Toledo SOUP is a non-profit, volunteer-run organization that hosts crowdfunding events to provide microgrants for local community improvement initiatives. Event attendees pay a $5 donation and hear several proposals while enjoying soup from local chefs. The crowd votes, and the presenter with the most votes is awarded the funds raised through admission donations. Since its inception, Toledo SOUP has raised nearly $15,000 to support local initiatives.

EVENT RECAP: Falling for Soup

falling-for-soup

Last night’s Falling for Soup event at the Collingwood Arts Center’s Underground Theatre was AMAZING.

Nearly 100 people came out to hear four incredible presentations and dine on soup provided by local chefs. We raised $813 through entry fees, raffle ticket sales and the bake sale, all of which went to the evening’s winner Soul City Boxing & Wrestling Gym. They’ll use the funds they received to help with cover travel expenses for taking a team of eight athletes to the Elite, Youth and Junior National Championships in Kansas City, Missouri later this year.

This is the second time the Soup audience has selected Soul City as a microgrant recipient, and, in true community fashion, they shared $150 of their grant with the other evening’s presenters: Morgan Fitzgibbons’ Post-It mural project, Joseph Peterson’s “Family Feud” community-building event at Scott High School, and Jerrod Witt’s AudiblEye app that helps the visually impaired navigate unfamiliar spaces.

We encourage those who are interested in further supporting these projects to contact the organizers directly.

High-Fives and Massive Thanks

To the Collingwood Arts Center team, — including Lexi, Ali and Pat, who helped set up the space, arrange the lighting and run the sound.

To the chefs who generously donated delicious soups:

To all the fantastic local businesses and people who contributed to the raffle:

To Maddie & Bella for the yummy coffee.

To our Emcees, Meaghan Mick and Eric Chase of 92.5 KISS FM for their energetic hosting. (You’re in for the next one, right?!)

To Ric Armentrout & Live On Location Productions for shooting the event! (We can’t wait to see the footage!)

To Mel Prior and her TSA students for all their help decorating!

And last, but certainly not least, to our incredible volunteer committee. Without all of your heart and hard work, this wouldn’t be possible.

NEXT EVENT: Falling for Soup – September 18th

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We’ve cooked up another great SOUP event, so mark your calendars and tell all your friends.

Join us at 5:00pm on Sunday, September 18th at the Collingwood Arts Center’s Underground Theatre to enjoy some tasty soup from local chefs, hear presentations on several awesome community projects, and help us raise some moolah to fund one of them!

Tracy from Chef Tracy 419 will be making a ginger-squash soup that’s dairy-free, soy-free, gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian!

 

CALL FOR PROPOSALS

Do you have a great idea and need a little seed money to get it off that napkin and into the history books? Does your organization need supplementary funding to carry out your mission? Would you like to make beautiful art and share it with the community?

YOU SHOULD SUBMIT A PROPOSAL TO TOLEDO SOUP.

The deadline for submissions is August 29, 2016. Once we have everyone’s awesome ideas, we’ll run them by a committee of impartial judges, who will select three or four submissions to be presented at the September 18th Falling for Soup event at the Collingwood Arts Center.

You know the drill:
1. Put $5 in the basket at the door.
2. Eat soup made by local chefs and listen to project proposal presentations.
3. Vote for the project you want to win everyone’s $5s.
4. Celebrate as the winner receives the dough!

Every dollar raised at the event from entry donations, bake sale and raffle ticket sales will go to the winner. With your help, we will raise $750 – $1250 for a small business/arts/entrepreneurial/social good project voted on by YOU, all during dinner!

If you’d like to volunteer to work the event, donate soup, bread, salad raffle items or baked goods, email us at ToledoSoup@gmail.com. You’ll have the eternal thanks of our grateful, soupy hearts.

 

Toledo SOUP Cancels Small Business Fundraising Event

It is with heavy hearts that the SOUP committee announces the cancellation of our scheduled May 15 event focused on small business fundraising.

We’ve reflected on our themed-event format and realized that it’s not working as well as we’d hoped for the community we serve. We also understand that it’s difficult for our community to support three SOUP events a year.

The committee will take the spring and summer to regroup and recruit additional volunteers, and we’ll be back in the fall with an event that will knock off your socks. Going forward, we’ll schedule bi-annual events to maximize our fundraising efforts and the impact they have on our community.

All proposals submitted for this round of funding will be kept on file and considered for the fall event. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, and we’ll happily connect you with any resources we can to help you achieve your small business funding goals.

We couldn’t be more grateful for the support you’ve all shown us and our micro-grant applicants over the years, and we thank you for your understanding now.

Proposals Are Open For Business

Notebook with the words Start business on the table.

Do you have a great idea for a small business? Are you itching to launch an entrepreneurial venture? Toledo SOUP wants to help! Submit your proposal for our next fundraising event, which will be focused on small business and entrepreneurial projects.

There are no restrictions on the types of business or entrepreneurial projects that can be submitted. All proposals will be evaluated by an independent selection committee comprised of local business owners, entrepreneurs, investors, government officials and business support personnel. Up to four proposals will be selected to present at the May 15, 2016 SOUP event.

To be considered for this round of funding, your proposal must be received by Monday, May 2, 2016.

We can’t wait to see all the great ideas that come through!

Soup Means Business

Event #11
5pm May 15, 2016 @ Sofia Quintero Art & Cultural Center

Join us for our first small business/entrepreneurial-focused SOUP event!

Vote to support your favorite project while we bring together locally-minded people over a tasty bowl of soup, with all the fixings, of course!

How it works:
1. Put $5 in the basket at the door.
2. Eat soup made by local chefs and listen project proposal presentations.
3. Vote for the project you want to win everyone’s $5s.
4. Celebrate as the winner receives the pot o’ money!

Every dollar raised at the event from entry donations, bake sale and raffle ticket sales will go to the winner. With your help, we will raise $750 – $1250 for a small business/ entrepreneurial project voted on by YOU, all during dinner!

SOUP Chefs:

TBD

Presenters:

TBD: You could be one of them! Submit your ideas here.

Toledo SOUP is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit group, run completely by unpaid volunteers who want to see good ideas become reality, help make NW Ohio a better place, and bring the community together for a good meal!

Join us for an evening of delicious food, interesting people, exciting ideas, and community pride.

2/21 Event Results

 

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Thank you to everyone who joined us at the Sofia Quintero Arts and Cultural Center for Soup Loves Toledo! You all helped raise more than $1,000 for the evening’s winner, Toledo Streets Newspaper.

Toledo Streets produces a monthly newspaper that covers community news, but at the core, this is a service organization that gives people the tools and support to lift themselves out of poverty trough work. In addition to selling the newspapers produced by the organization, many of their independent vendors contribute to the publication and sell advertising to support the paper and earn extra income.

Toledo Streets also provides those in need with job training skills and connects them with resources for housing and medical care.

We are so grateful to all the individuals and organizations who submitted proposals for this event, joined us to share their stories, and donated goods, services and time to make our tenth event such a rousing success. You are all awesome, change-making bad@$$es. #YouWillDoBetterInToledo

Mark your calendars for the next event, focused on small business and entrepreneurial ideas, scheduled for May 15th.

SOUP Loves Toledo

Event #10
5pm February 21, 2016 @ Sofia Quintero Art & Cultural Center

Join us for our first social welfare-focused SOUP event!

Vote to support your favorite project while we bring together locally-minded people over a tasty bowl of soup, with all the fixings, of course!

How it works:
1. Put $5 in the basket at the door.
2. Eat soup made by local chefs and listen project proposals presentations.
3. Vote for the project you want to win everyone’s $5s.
4. Celebrate as the winner receives the pot o’ money!

Every dollar raised at the event from entry donations, bake sale and raffle ticket sales will go to the winner. With your help, we will raise $750 – $1250 for a community-improvement project voted on by YOU, all during dinner!

SOUP Chefs:
Maureen Brogan of The Original Sub Shop
Andrew Veselenak of Shawn’s Irish Tavern
Hassan Hassan of Executive Diner

Presenters:

SibShops – Sibshops is a special group for those aged 9-16 who have a sibling with special needs. Sibshops provides a community for these children to talk about the blessings and challenges they face. They also provide education on disabilities to help with coping skills, and share insights with parents to help their typical children manage the stresses of having a special needs sibling.

Toledo Streets Newspaper – Toledo Streets in a non-profit organization that produces a monthly newspaper that covers community news. They are part of a global street paper movement of over 110 papers in 35 countries, all with the same goal of giving their communities a program to lift individuals out of poverty through work.

• Toledo Prison Mural Arts Project – This project will involve the facilitation of a community arts workshop with incarcerated individuals. Participants are currently learning about community art and will ultimately plan and execute a community mural project dealing with the theme of justice and revealing truths about the incarceration experience. They hope this project will elevate public consciousness, build bridges between those who are incarcerated and the community, and empower incarcerated individuals to become agents of positive change in their own lives and in their communities.

Together We Can Make a Difference – This organization provides personal care and toiletry items, including bar soap, shampoo, toothbrushes, toothpaste, denture adhesive, cleaning tabs, deodorant, razors, feminine hygiene products, bladder control garments, diapers, wipes, dish soap and laundry soap to needy households in NWO. These items cannot be purchased with assistance vouchers, so they’re trying to fill the void.

Toledo SOUP is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit group, run completely by unpaid volunteers who want to see good ideas become reality, help make NW Ohio a better place, and bring the community together for a good meal!

Join us for an evening of delicious food, interesting people, exciting ideas, and community pride.