Soup cookoff raises $2,000 for senior programming

BVPD Chief Rob Gillespie serves up the Village Project's vegan quinoa stew. Photo by Tara Wendell

Over 150 participants, volunteers, and vendors were in attendance at the 13th annual Bay Village Senior Center Soup Cookoff on Friday, Jan. 27. This event is a fundraiser put on each year to help raise funds that directly support new and existing senior center and BV60+ programs. New programs that have been introduced to the senior center this year include exercise programs such as Tai Chi, Brain/Balance/Barre, and Music and Mocktails.

The goal of the senior center is to provide a wide variety of activities, events, and programs to residents of Bay Village and surrounding communities for little to no cost. Fundraising events such as the soup cookoff helps financially support programs such as these.

The senior center is grateful to the participants for providing a monetary donation to the senior center, the area facilities for providing soup, and Bay businesses and organizations for donating items for the raffle. Additionally, we could not have put on this event without our hardworking volunteers. We would like to send a special thank you to our volunteers from Bay Village including Mayor Paul Koomar, Kathryn Kerber, and the Bay Village Police Department. 

Local chefs faced off and brought their best soup to the cookoff! This year’s contestants entered a variety of soups, some familiar such as loaded baked potato and chicken paprikash, and some new and exciting such as an oxtail barley and vegan Mexican quinoa stew. The winner of the soup cookoff was The Normandy Senior Living. Runner-ups were St. Mary of the Woods in second place and Brookdale in third place.

The soup cookoff was my last large event at the senior center as I have recently resigned from my role as Director of Community Services. I’d like to leave this message with residents of Bay Village and senior center participants from surrounding communities:

It’s with a bittersweet heart that I share the news that I have resigned from my role as Director of Community Services and have accepted a promotion at my previous employer, Independence Village. While my time here at Bay Village has been short, it was an absolute pleasure to work with all of you and it is my hope that I left a small impact on the City, surrounding communities, and seniors that we have served here at the senior center.

I know that you are in the best of hands with Connie Lupica, Jennifer Ruese, and Tara Wendell and that my replacement will be an excellent addition to the team. Thank you all for your kindness, helpfulness, and for welcoming me to Bay Village with open arms. I wish you all the best of luck and it has been a pleasure to serve you.

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Volume 15, Issue 2, Posted 10:09 AM, 02.07.2023