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Clay Time: Making 'Empty Bowls' at Sweetwater

Volunteers stop by Sweetwater Center for the Arts to create and donate pottery bowls to charity. The bowls are being donated to support the Empty Bowls dinner on March 10.

Gus Zuccaro of Cranberry Township was in fifth grade when his mother bought a wheel and kiln. He’s been making pottery for the past 30 years.

Susie Ross of Beaver never touched a pottery wheel until Saturday.

“It’s a lot harder than I thought. The people who know how to do it make it look a lot easier,” Ross said.

But having years of experience or none at all didn’t matter on Saturday for those who came to Sweetwater Center for the Arts to create bowls in the open ceramics studio.

The fundraiser in support of Empty Bowls, a campaign designed to help stop hunger. Bowls are meant to be symbolic of the many who are struggling to feed their families. 

About 30 people pre-registered to attend the event, though at least 100 were expected, according to Sweetwater. Some 300 balls of clay were pre-rolled to accommodate the walk-in participants.

Those who made bowls left them at the center to be glazed and donated to support the Empty Bowls dinner on March 10 at Rodef Shalom Congregation in Oakland under the efforts of Just Harvest and the Greater Pittsburgh Food Bank.

For more information on the Empty Bowls dinner, click here. 

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