Soup fundraiser for Kewaunee zoo returns after a three-year absence
LUXEMBURG – It's been three years since people in Kewaunee County had the chance to taste locally made soups, keep the soup bowls and view art crated by local students, all while helping their local zoo.
But that chance is returning, with a record number of soups and perhaps a record number of guests, too.
Taking place Feb. 26 at the Kewaunee County Fairgrounds in Luxemburg, ZoupArt is a major fundraiser for Bruemmer Park Zoo in Kewaunee. Those attending get to choose a soup bowl made for the occasion by local students and artists, then use the bowls to sample soups made by local restaurants, bar and grills, and home cooks. They then take the bowls home with them after the event.
There also is an art show featuring works by students from area schools, raffle drawings with a variety of prizes, and a bake sale held by Kewaunee County Home and Community Education.
ZoupArt had been held for eight straight years through 2020 and drew a steadily increasing number of guests every year except one that was affected by a blizzard. The 2020 edition drew almost 800 people and raised more than $9,000, both record numbers for the event, surpassing the $7,000 raised in 2018.
But the COVID-19 pandemic saw the planned 2021 and '22 events canceled, and Pam Zander, president of the Zoological Society of Kewaunee County, which sponsors and organizes ZoupArt, said its return is highly anticipated by the society and the public.
"We're really excited about it," Zander said. "There's been tremendous feedback, a lot of people have been asking for it. It's become very popular with the community. And it doesn't just help the zoo; it brings people to Kewaunee County."
For this year's ZoupArt, between 750 and 800 bowls will be available; attendees can pick out one as part of their admission. Most of the decorated and glazed clay bowls were created by students in kindergarten through grade 12 across the county, the rest by local artists.
Thirty-three soups will be served, the most ever for ZoupArt. Twenty-one will be made by area restaurants and bar and grills, 12 by local home cooks.
Besides getting to try a variety of soups, guests vote for their favorite restaurant and home-cooked soups, with the top two vote-getters in each category winning cooking equipment for a prize. The winner and runner-up among the restaurants win equipment donated by Vollrath Co. in Sheboygan, while the top home cook wins a Ninja indoor grill/air fryer and runner-up wins a Fullstar 11-in-1 slicer.
ZoupArt proceeds will go toward projects at the zoo, which has several improvements and enhancements in the works as part of the masterplan it released several years ago. It's one of two major annual zoo benefits, the other being fall season's Zoobilee.
ZoupArt takes place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 26 at the Kewaunee County Fairgrounds, 625 Third St., Luxemburg. Admission is $15, which includes the soup bowl. All proceeds benefit Bruemmer Park Zoo, E4280 County F, Kewaunee, which is open from 7 a.m. to sunset daily with free admission. For more information, call 920-388-0444 or visit the "Bruemmer Park Zoo" Facebook page.
Contact Christopher Clough at 920-562-8900 or [email protected].
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This article originally appeared on Green Bay Press-Gazette: Soup fundraiser for Kewaunee zoo returns after a three-year absence