Bozeman Soup is an annual event where guests purchase a ticket and receive soup, bread and one vote for their favorite project. The money raised from the ticket sales and donations are then given to the project of the guests’ choice. During dinner, guests get to hear four short presentations chosen from the submitted proposals by the Soup committee mostly made up of students and faculty from the College of Arts and Architecture.
All the projects are focused toward benefitting the community of Bozeman. Submitting a project proposal requires, among other things, explaining why the project matters to the community and how Bozeman Soup grant funding would benefit the project.
“The first event raised $650 which went to The Cottonwood Club and the second event raised $1000 for Chicks with Sticks,” Flanagan said. The Cottonwood Club defines itself as an art gallery, theater and circus and hosts Bring Your Own Art shows; Chicks with Sticks is Bozeman’s bucket drum corps.
Flanagan said that “Bozeman Soup was started by a university Art and Social Activism class last fall. We model our event after Detroit Soup.”
Flanagan went on to say, “Bozeman has proven to be a great town for soup for several reasons, one of which being that it’s a university town. So many ideas represented at soup have been generated from university research and organizations. Beyond the university, I think Bozeman is full of people wanting to support creativity and entrepreneurship at a local level.”
“This event is a democratic and direct micro-grant funding opportunity. Not only do the presenters benefit,” Flanagan said, “but soup is a platform for dinner guests to communicate, engage, collaborate and access community driven conversations.” The event is advertised as “creativity fed and funded by the community.”
“For me the most rewarding aspect of the project is how direct and simple the funding works. Equally important to the money raised is the gathering of people that takes place; we sit, talk, connect, and eat soup together. By the end of the event your entrance fee goes directly to the elected project,” Flanagan said.
“We’ve had agriculture, art, social justice, educators, entrepreneurs, etc. represented at Bozeman Soup. This is a great resource for university students and groups because it is a way to gain support from the community at large,” Flanagan said, “Also, this is a great platform for community organizations that may not have access to all the resources they need to pursue their projects.”
This year’s Bozeman Soup will be held at The Eagles Lodge at 316 E Main on Oct. 18 at 6 p.m. Tickets are $5 for students and $7 for community members.
Flanagan said, “We are excited to continue Soup in the future and to sustain a connection with the community. Our event has grown already with our past two gatherings and we’re excited to see what turns up this Saturday.”