Thursday, September 29, 2016


The clouds just couldn't decide what they wanted to do today and by 5pm crowd funding La Crosse Soup organizers threw in the towel and just said we are going to be outside so bring your bowl, spoon, chair and umbrella as we would meet in front of the rootdown yoga studio and its future cafe, Uptowne Cafe.

The new to be Caledonia Street restauranteur, Adrian Lipscombe,  has moved here with her family from Austin and that's Texas, not Minnesota, after being introduced to La Crosse at last year's nationwide Soup Summit. Our city must have made some kind of impression on her to move to the cold lands... 
(L) Adrian of Uptowne Cafe 
Fortunately, some 200 folks were in attendance in spite of the weather. Adrian graciously was our soup cook for the evening for the unexpected larger crowd and unfortunately, the yummy Minestrone ran out.  Folks understood... 

A big thanks to both Adrian for cooking and to Fayze's restaurant for the bread. 

So, let me tell you about the evening's 4 pitches :
First up: Laquita Becker who works with at risk youth for the Y's Boys and Girls Club wanted help with her AWSM project of providing funds for attendance at retreats/conferences to work on positive character and leadership. The group started this past summer. 

2) Jacob Seamus proposed Cultural Celebration Weekends such as the one I described in yesterday's blog entry. To get us out during the dark days of winter to foster ethnic cultural fairs with trad'l food, dance, art activities, to expand global views for the entire family.

3) Three High School youth dressed in ADOPT black T's pitched raising monies for scholarships for Therapy Dog training for dogs to go to hospitals, senior facilities, schools etc. to help provide companionship to those in need and to ease stress. 

And the last pitch was- 
4) Walk Your City which involved posting temporary signs promoting walking to public spots with the predicted TOA.  Each $20 sign would last approximately 3 years and could skirt city posting ordinances. The goal is health and to be more active by walking. 

All clever ideas indeed. Attendees can ask questions after each pitch too.

For those that remember all the $5 donation request for the Soup dinner goes to the pitch winner. The night's attendees were given their vote ticket after they contributed for their meal and then placed their ticket vote.

The night's winner was PITCH #1, the AWSM program now with more monies going to train future young community leaders with an extra $939. 

We were spared being rained on and were able to try out a new locale. Yet as in any gathering, some tweaking to be done... It's difficult to guess on attendance but always better to have too much food than too little, need for sound projection as not everybody with a good idea has a great speaking voice over traffic and children. Perhaps also suggesting folks to bring water when there is no beverage donor. And to realize once it gets dark (earlier at this time of the year), folks are ready to disperse rather than stay around to mingle... All fixable.  

Kudos to both organizers Josh (Coan?) now pitch organizer (l) and La Crosse Soup's Andrew Londre (r) for another evening to make our community better. Go to La Crosse Soup's FB page for upcoming events and with any pitch ideas.

To Uptowne, best wishes in your continued growth and revitalization in the North end of La Crosse. 

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