Soup’s On fights hunger, homelessness before the holidays hit
By D.J. WANBERG For Sun-Times Media
So many choices: Diners make their selections at the Naperville Rotary Club Soup's On fundraiser last year at Tellabs in Naperville. | File photo
What: Fundraiser that benefits DuPage PADS, Loaves & Fishes and Hesed House.
When: 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 21.
Where: Tellabs, 1415 W. Diehl Road in Naperville.
Tickets: $45 for adults, $35 for seniors ages 65 and older, $10 for children ages 6 to 12, and children ages 5 and under are admitted free. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit the website at soupsonrotary.com.
As fall takes seasonal hold on the Naperville area, an event that’s fast becoming a community tradition during this time of year brings forth its 2012 edition.
Soup’s On, the Rotary Club of Naperville’s fundraiser to benefit DuPage PADS, Loaves & Fishes and Hesed House, returns for a fifth year Sunday, Oct. 21, from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Tellabs, 1415 W. Diehl Road in Naperville.
“It’s a chance for people to be supportive and have fun at the same time,” said event co-chairman and founder Bill Garlough, who owns My Chef Catering. “One hundred percent of the ticket price goes to the charities and everything involved with putting on Soup’s On is donated.”
Attendees can sample a variety of food from more than 25 local restaurants and food-based businesses. That includes 16 different types of soups, stews and chili.
Garlough said many event favorites are back such as the beef tenderloin sliders with creamy horseradish sauce from Sullivan’s Steakhouse. But several restaurants are making their first Soup’s On appearance including Braconi’s Pizza, who will serve selections from its pizza menu along with a dish called Mama Braconi’s Pasta.
Other restaurants new to the event include Kuma’s Asian Bistro and SugarToad, which will serve apple parsnip soup with bacon. Attendees can sample honey walnut basa fish stir fry from that restaurant.
Naper Nuts & Sweets has had a table at every installment of Soup’s On and will return again this year with warm carmel corn. Owner Dominique Martucci said the business might bring additional items.
“I have such respect for the Soup’s On organization. They do a phenomenal job,” she said. “It’s great food, great people and raising money for the greatest cause of all.”
The ticket price includes not only the food, but complementary water, soft drinks, juice and coffee. There will be a cash bar.
As in previous years, those at Soup’s On will take home a customized ceramic soup mug. It is used during the event for those wanting to try any soup, chili or stew. A restaurant serving those items puts a sample in a disposable soup bowl that fits inside the mug. When done, the disposable soup bowl is discarded and a new one is put in at the next restaurant table.
A free new edition of the Soup’s On cookbook also will be given out at this year’s event. The book includes recipes from participating restaurants.
Soup’s On is not only about food and drink. There will again be entertainment from District 203 and 204 high school musical groups. Benet Academy in Lisle also joins that lineup this year.
The DuPage Children’s Museum returns with a play area, there will again be a silent auction and there will be televisions showing the Oct. 21 NFL games.
Naperville doesn’t have its own homeless shelter and is served by regional support services. This year’s event brochure said more than 2,000 people attended last year’s event that raised $145,000 for DuPage PADS, Loaves & Fishes and Hesed House. Garlough expects both numbers to increase this year and said corporate sponsorship also has gone up from last year.
During its four years of existence, Soup’s On has raised over $415,000, according to the event website.
Garlough said that last year, as in previous years, the money was delivered quickly to the three charities for use in the upcoming holiday season.
“We want to end hunger and homelessness in our community and this event specifically targets that,” he said.