How much food can you buy with $2? With the typical restaurant dishing out a meal at an average cost of $10, you are not going far with just a meager $2 that is until Southern Utah University’s monthly Bread & Soup Nite returns to campus. Giving all customers a steaming bowl of soup and rolls with a heaping dish of charity.
Although the all-you-can-eat soup that costs just $2 plus a donated can of food seems a bargain night out for students and city residents alike, the event nets much more than it dishes out, as its purpose is solely to collect food for the campus HOPE Pantry and the Iron County Care and Share.
According to Pam Branin, associate director for the Community Engagement Center, more than 500 people attend the monthly Bread & Soup Nite, making an average of 1,020 bowls of soup dished out and about 400 non-perishable food items donated each night. With an impressive amount of food being donated last year to the HOPE Pantry, Branin expects the program to continue with its upward trajectory.
“Bread & Soup Nite brings people together to accomplish something positive,” stated Branin. “Not only is it an enjoyable evening for a very nominal price, the donations that go to the Pantry help support the students that utilize the Pantry each month to feed themselves and their families."
She explains, the University’s HOPE Pantry, a food pantry for cash-strapped, serves an average of 120 students each month who may have otherwise gone without. Beyond the University, any surplus of donated food items are donated to Cedar City’s food bank, Iron County Care and Share.
While the primary goal of the event is to generate food donations and raise awareness of food insecurity amongst students, these monthly meals also provide a unique opportunity for people across the city to enjoy a good meal and entertainment within a friendly atmosphere all at a low sticker price of $2 with a non-perishable food item or $3 without a food item.
Branin went on to explain, “During Bread & Soup Nite you see students mingling with professors and families with small children socializing with other community members, you don’t see any other events like this at the University. All are welcome to attend to get an enjoyable meal at minimal price.”
Food isn’t the only thing being served on Monday nights, along with soup and bread the Community Engagement Center coordinates performances by local high school bands, area musicians, and University performers, emphasizing that Bread & Soup Nite truly is a community event.
With delicious food being dished out with sides of charity and entertainment there is no better place to be than Bread & Soup Nite in the Ballroom of SUU’s Sharwan Smith Center for the first Monday of every month.
SUU’s Community Engagement Center will host its next Bread & Soup Nite next Monday, September 9 from 5 to 7 p.m. The monthly event is generally held on the first Monday of every month barring Monday holiday, in which place it will be held on the second Monday. This event is open to all within the community.