By LeAnn R. Ralph
COLFAX — What goes better together than soup and bowls?
To capitalize on the natural link between soup and bowls, the Colfax High School Chapter of the National Honor Society held a “Soup” er “Bowls” fundraiser to benefit the families of students who have lost parents this past year.
The fundraising activity was held Thursday, October 11, prior to the Colfax High School girls’ volleyball match.
For ten dollars, people received a bowl of soup in a hand-crafted bowl of their choice that they could take home made by National Honor Society students and teachers in the school district.
“We thought it was a pretty good idea,” said Tanner Nierenhausen, president of the Colfax chapter of the National Honor Society.
“Other schools have done this as a fundraiser to make bowls and sell them with soup to make money to give to local charities or groups around the area. So we thought it would be a good idea to help out the families that have lost parents this past summer or spring. That’s where we got the idea for it. It’s the reason why we did it,” Nierenhausen said.
“And now it’s coming to fruition right here,” he said, indicating the crowd of students in the lobby at Colfax High School.
On the day the Colfax Messenger visited to take a picture of the students and their bowls, the lobby area was filled with students holding the brightly-colored bowls they had made.
Nierenhausen said it was difficult to say how many bowls had been produced.
“Everybody made one, but some people made two or three,” he said.
The bowls were not created during class time.
“We did them after class. We had certain dates set up when we could come in after school and put them together,” Nierenhausen said.
Most of the students did not have much experience with making ceramic bowls.
“We had a little mold that we used that we put [the clay] on. Then we had to style it,” he said.
The bowls were made on what is known as a bisque mold.
“It looked like a little weird clay dome that you put the clay on top of and then you style it however you want,” he said.
“We let it dry for a while, then they had to be fired once, then you had to glaze them and fire them again. We had to go in a couple of times to finish the bowls. So we had really good participation,” Nierenhausen said.
The process of making the bowls took two or three weeks all together, he said.
“We had to come in, but Mr. Meredith had a lot of work on this project,” Nierenhausen said.
Rich Meredith teaches art at Colfax High School.
“He had to do all the firing. He got put on the job for it,” Nierenhausen said.
When asked whether the National Honor Society would be willing to try the project again, Nierenhausen said he believed the fundraiser bowls were a good idea.
“We’ll have to see how it goes. I think we could do it again if it goes well,” Nierenhausen said.
The students worked with Lisa Neuburg to make three different kinds of soup. Neuburg teaches Family and Consumer Science at Colfax High School.
Several teachers also made their favorite soup and brought it in for the event,
Meredith said he did not take a complete count of the bowls that had been made but estimated there were about seventy or eighty.
“It worked out pretty well,” Meredith said.
When the Colfax Messenger noted that Meredith ended up doing quite a bit of work for the project, he replied, “It wasn’t too bad.”
“I rolled out the slabs. And putting the stuff together isn’t hard to do,” he said.
“It’s fun to watch the kids create, and it’s fun to watch the teachers create. Then they see the final project,” Meredith said.
“We use these at home at our house all the time. We get leftovers [from class] every year. They’re always good to have,” he said.
During the volleyball match, the “Soup” er “Bowls” event raised over $500, said Mark Mosey, Colfax High School Biology teacher and an NHS advisor.
“We did not sell all of the bowls, but we plan to have another soup sale in the winter,” Mosey said.