Soup for the Soul raises record amount for Hospice of Mercy

On Thursday, Feb. 12, more than 300 Pagosa residents attended the annual Soup for the Soul fund-raiser to benefit Hospice of Mercy.

Guests started the night by bidding on many works of art produced by local artists during a silent auction. Eleven restaurants then served up delicious signature soups and appetizers for everyone to sample.

Karen Richardson attended the event for the first time with several friends. “I didn’t know what to expect, but I thought the event was very well done. We really enjoyed the green chili with chicken from the Floured Apron and will plan on coming back next year,” she explained.

This year, Soup for the Soul raised over $16,500 — more money than any previous year — from ticket sales, sponsorship, donations and proceeds from the silent auction. Funds raised at the annual event support charity care and hospice services not reimbursed by the Hospice Medicare Benefit, like bereavement services, spiritual care and volunteer coordination. In 2008, Hospice of Mercy served more than 40 patients in the Pagosa Springs area and over 150 in La Plata, Archuleta and Montezuma counties.

Pagosa Springs High School students contributed to the success of the event. Twenty members of the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) club worked in three shifts to set up, work the event and help clean up.

FBLA President Casey Crow said, “It’s a fun event for the community and we really like being involved.”

Special hand-thrown ceramic vases served as table centerpieces and were created by several art students. Many of the vases were sold that evening, raising $180 for Hospice of Mercy.