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A Heartwarming Success: Cornerstone's 15th Annual Soupfest

On Wednesday, November 15th, the St. Bernard Parish Hall came alive with warmth, camaraderie, and the irresistible aroma of simmering soups as Cornerstone celebrated its 15th annual Soupfest. The event, a beloved tradition in the community, showcased the culinary talents of local chefs and raised over $30,000 in support of Cornerstone's mission. Let's take a closer look at the highlights of this heartwarming gathering.

The Chefs and Their Culinary Masterpieces

Four talented teams of chefs took center stage at Soupfest, each crafting a unique and delectable soup for attendees to savor. LuAnn's Bakery and Cafe delighted taste buds with a Cheeseburger Chowder, while J Rego's Gathering Place showcased their expertise with a flavorful Salmon Chowder. Mitchell's Restaurant wowed the crowd with an Italian Cream Soup, and Cornerstone's Community Kitchen contributed their special touch with the Italian Engagement Soup.

Awards and Recognition

The competition was fierce, but two standout soups earned special recognition. Mitchell's Restaurant claimed the People's Choice Award with their crowd-pleasing Italian Cream Soup, while the Judge's Award went to J Rego's Gathering Place for their outstanding Salmon Chowder. The culinary prowess on display left attendees with satisfied stomachs and smiles.

Tom DiDio, Tom Stauffer, Jay Merluzzo, Carlos Escobar, Chris Avtges, Josh Virkler, Lynn & Gary Benevides

The Masters of Ceremony and Musical Ambiance

Tom DiDio and Tom Stauffer played pivotal roles as Masters of Ceremony, guiding attendees through the evening's festivities with charm and enthusiasm. Adding a musical backdrop to the night was the talented musician Rob Thomas, whose acoustic melodies provided the perfect accompaniment to the savory soups and lively atmosphere.

Acknowledgments and Gratitude

The success of Soupfest wouldn't have been possible without the dedication of the Soupfest Planning Committee, who invested months of meticulous planning to ensure every detail was perfect. A heartfelt thank you extended to the numerous volunteers who generously gave their time, from event setup to serving and cleanup, making the evening seamless and enjoyable for all.

The Community's Generosity

Local businesses and organizations rallied behind Cornerstone, donating hundreds of prizes for the Teacup Raffle and Silent Auction. Their generosity, coupled with the ongoing support of sponsors, contributed significantly to the event's success and Cornerstone's continued impact in the community.

Looking to the Future

St. Bernard Parish Hall once again served as the welcoming venue for this annual gathering, and the organizers express sincere gratitude for their ongoing support. With a packed house of approximately 275 attendees, Soupfest 2023 was a resounding success, leaving everyone eager for the 16th edition next year.

Cornerstone's 15th Annual Soupfest was a testament to the power of community, compassion, and culinary creativity. As the funds raised contribute to Cornerstone's vital work, the event stands as a heartwarming reminder of what can be achieved when a community comes together for a common cause. Here's to another year of delicious soups, shared laughter, and unwavering support for Cornerstone. Until next year!

Alexis Flint

Programs and Operations Director

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