You don’t have to be a Monet or a Degas to have fun splashing some paint on ceramics.
That’s what Karen Verdier tells the timid-hearted when she’s encouraging them to decorate bowls for the Mountain Resource Center’s Empty Bowls fund-raiser.
“Can you pick up a paintbrush? You can paint it one monochromatic color,” said Verdier, who is the center’s health services director.
The MRC is hosting its fourth annual fund-raiser on Nov. 7 in Conifer for lunch or dinner, and Nov. 8 in Evergreen for lunch.
Artists and members of the public donate painted bowls to the center. Some of the bowls will be sold during a silent auction; the rest are used as “guest bowls.” People who attend the event will receive a complimentary bowl.
Non-artistic people can go to the Go Paint! studio in Evergreen and paint pre-made bowls for a flat rate.
While the MRC welcomes all bowls, no matter how monochromatic, Verdier said the atmosphere at the studio might stimulate artsy juices you never knew you had.
“You get there and see all this creativity exuded by others,” Verdier said. “You start to think, ‘Hmm, I could put polka dots on my bowl.’ ”
Bowl-painting parties can serve as family outings, team-building exercises, birthday parties and girls’ nights out.
“It is, I believe, one of the sole community art projects (in the area),” Verdier said.
The MRC needs at least 600 bowls to put on all three meals and will accept donations until Oct. 23.
The event itself will serve soups from several local restaurants and a variety of breads and desserts. Local musicians also will perform.
Funds raised by Empty Bowls are especially valuable to the MRC because they can be used to pay for the center’s administrative costs, Verdier said.
“No one wants to pay for your paper clips; no one wants to pay for your lighting,” Verdier said. “But as an organization, we need those dollars.”
The Mountain Resource Center spent about $1.16 million in 2011. Its 2011 expenses were divided as follows:
• 90 percent for programs.
• 9 percent for administrative costs.
• 1 percent for fund-raising.
Unrestricted funds also come in handy when the mountain community has unexpected needs, such as helping those who lost their homes in the Lower North Fork Fire.
“This Empty Bowls fund-raiser allows us to fill in the blanks,” Verdier said. “These unrestricted dollars are really just priceless.”
Artists who contribute bowls for the event also have gone into schools — like Conifer High School — to conduct workshops with students, allowing them to donate the bowls they’ve worked on and adding a “sharing-of-knowledge” dimension to the program, Verdier said.
“These bowls have an impact on our community,” she said.
Contact Gaby Zastrocky at
firstname.lastname@example.org or follow at Twitter.com/gabriellereport. Check www.HighTimberTimes.com for updates.
Tickets are available for a $25 minimum donation and may be purchased in advance at Mountain Resource Center, online at www.mrcco.org, or by phone at 303-838-7552.
You also may buy a ticket to donate to a veteran in the community.
The meals are:
• 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7, at the Mountain Resource Center in Conifer.
• 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7, at the MRC.
• 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8, at the Evergreen Lake House.
Want to help?
There are several ways to participate.
• Purchase and paint a bowl at Go Paint! in Evergreen. The bowls cost $11, and the studio fee is waived for those participating in the fund-raiser. Call 303-679-3089 for more information.
• Sponsor a local artist to decorate a bowl.
• Donate bowls for students or Boy or Girl Scouts to decorate.
• Host a bowl party for your business, family or friends. Go Paint! arranges private parties.
• Buy a handmade bowl from your favorite art gallery and donate it.
• If you are a professional or amateur potter, make a handmade bowl and donate it.
• Finished bowls should be taken to the Mountain Resource Center at 11030 Kitty Drive in Conifer. Bowls painted at Go Paint! will be transported to the MRC.
For more information or for other options, contact Karen at 303-838-7552, ext. 19.
• Bowls will be accepted until Oct. 23.
• Contact the MRC if you’re interested in volunteering.