This coming week, in events that get to your heart through your stomach.
Just after Thanksgiving, the Soup and Bread benefit at the High Noon Saloon netted $1,060 to Second Harvest to help alleviate hunger in the area. It got local folks charged up about soup. And it was a good time. There are more holiday food drives and requests for volunteers in this week before Christmas. Check them out. There's no live DJ... just the satisfaction of doing a good thing:
- Food pantry donations to the Food Security Program of the Community Action Coalition for South Central Wisconsin, which works to alleviate hunger in Dane, Jefferson, and Waukesha counties. Call 246-4730 for more info.
- Second Harvest Volunteer Sessions, with volunteers needed to assist with food sorting and repacking. Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin, 2808 Dairy Dr., 9 a.m.-7 p.m. weekdays with work available in three-hour shifts. Apply online and call 216-7214 for more info.
- A Festivus for the Rest of Us at Quaker Steak & Lube in Middleton, with a Festivus Pole display, patrons allowed an "Airing of Grievances" in exchange for a non-perishable food donation to The River Food Pantry, and an arm-wrestling "Feat of Strength" with the restaurant's mascot Gizzard Coop. Quaker Steak & Lube, 2259 Demming Way, Middleton, 6-10 p.m. Call 831-5823 for more info.
- SwimWest Food Drive, with customers receiving discounted open swim admission with the donation of two items of non-perishable food. SwimWest, 1001 Deming Way, 9 a.m.-4:45 p.m. December 20-23 and 26-30. Call 831-6829 for more info.
- River Food Pantry Drive, with customers receiving free day passes with the donation of two items of non-perishable food. Better Body Bootcamp and Martingilio Martial Arts, 680 Grand Canyon Dr., through December 31. Call 492-1886 for more info.
Meanwhile, Ian's Pizza is well known for its textbook-perfect crusts, mac n' cheese slices, and of course, as the place that folks all over the world call when they want to give Wisconsin protesters a free pie. Ian's also works to give back to the community, and is serving free pie and beverages to the needy with its Christmas Eve pizza party. Local community assistance groups, such as Porchlight and First United Methodist Church, will pass out vouchers to people in need, which will allow the recipient to attend the party.
Saturday, December 24 - Sunday, December 25
Madison on the Cheap has compiled its fifth annual list of restaurants open on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It is divided into two sections. The first lists more than a dozen Chinese restaurants that are open on one or both days. The second lists more than 20 other restaurants that are likewise serving on one or both of the holidays, with options including Indian, Japanese, Latin, steakhouses, hotel buffets, and taverns. At least a few of these options will doubtlessly be screening the Christmas Day game between the Packers and the Bears, with kickoff set for 7:20 p.m. Green Bay may no longer be undefeated, but a return trip to the Super Bowl still beckons as strong as ever.
More events this week
Tuesday, December 20
Youth Cooking School: Perfect Pies, for kids ages 6-12, with instructors preparing crust from scratch, apple pie, and peanut butter fudge pie. Whole Foods Market, 3313 University Ave., 4:30-6 p.m., $10. Call 233-9566 for more info.
Glorious Greens class, with instructor Becca Pozorski covering the benefits and preparation of leafy green vegetables, with samples of kale chips and chard with sweet and salty sauce. Willy Street Co-op West, 6825 University Ave., 6-8 p.m., $15 owners and $25 all others. Call 284-7800 for more info.
Thursday, December 22
Youth Cooking School: Edible Gifts, for kids ages 6-12, with instructors preparing pretzel wreaths, cookie dough truffles, and cracker candy/ Whole Foods Market, 3313 University Ave., 4:30-6 p.m., $10. Call 233-9566 for more info.
Slow Cooker Rescue Recipes class, with instructor Jennifer Jones demonstrating how to use the countertop appliance with minimal preparation to prepare healthy evening meals. Willy Street Co-op West, 6825 University Ave., 6-8 p.m., $15 owners and $25 all others. Call 284-7800 for more info.
Friday, December 23
Feed Our Friends For Christmas, with 608 TV and House of Refuge Ministries hosting a free holiday meal for the homeless and those in need. House of Refuge Church, 4018 Mineral Point Rd., 2-7 p.m., free. Call 217-1782 for more info.
Saturday, December 24
Sunday, December 25
Savory Sunday, with volunteers needed to prepare and serve a fresh, hot Christmas Day meal for the hungry, now serving once again in the Wisconsin Capitol cafeteria. Lutheran Campus Center, 5 N. Mills St., 11 a.m. Call 233-6967 for more info.
Christmas Community Meal at First United Methodist Church, serving more than 300 people a traditional holiday menu, and delivering more than 150 meals to homebound people. First United Methodist Church, 230 Wisconsin Ave., noon-2 p.m., free. Please RSVP by December 24 for delivery, and call 251-4407 for more info.
Save the date
Underground Meats Weekend Workshops, a series of four weekend classes hosted by the Underground Food Collective, presenting hands-on demonstrations of producing pork sausages, bacon, rillettes and pates, and roasts. Underground Meats, 912 E. Main St., January 28-29, February 25-26, March 31-April 1, April 28-29, all sessions 10-1 p.m. and 3-6 p.m.. $65 adults and $58 students for one class, with discounts for multiple sessions. Call 338-1527 for more info.