Soup's on soon at Empty Bowls fundraiser

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More than two dozen chefs from some of the best-known restaurants and caterers on the East End are preparing for their own "souper" bowl next month.

The Empty Bowls luncheon will feature soups prepared by 28 chefs, including some from local markets and pizzerias, and will benefit the Project MOST after-school program in Springs and East Hampton. The luncheon has been held the past five years, and the participating chefs is double any previous number.

Those arriving at the American Legion Hall in Amagansett on March 9 bring a bowl and have all the bread and gourmet soup they can eat for their $12 admission, or they can just walk out with a quart of soup made anywhere they want, from Nick and Toni's in East Hampton to the cafeteria at the Bridgehampton School.

The hall is at 15 Montauk Hwy.; the event runs from noon to 3 p.m.

Tim Bryden, executive director of Project MOST, said the event should bring in about $10,000 for his group's Springs Seedlings program.

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Project MOST runs at the Springs Elementary School and the John M. Marshall Elementary School in East Hampton from 3-6 p.m. every school day. About 300 children in each school, roughly 30 percent of the student body, participate in activities ranging from yoga and dance to astronomy and arts.

The Springs Seedlings program starts with students learning how food is grown and harvested in the school's greenhouse and outdoor garden, and ends with cooking classes.

One reason for the big turnout of chefs is word of mouth. Joe Reamulto of Nick and Toni's is on the board of directors of Project MOST.

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There is one change from years past: the date has been moved back two weeks. "Last February, we had it when the big blizzard hit," Bryden said. "We're not messing around with February any more."

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