About the Common Good Soup Kitchen Community
A Frank Capra Movie comes to Life in Southwest Harbor Maine
Established in 2009, the Common Good Soup Kitchen was born in one man’s home kitchen. Chef Bill Morrison made great soups, prepared with grains and fresh produce, and distributed them to the elderly and others in need as well. His mission broadly conceived was to nourish the body, mind and soul of the community, especially during the hardscrabble days of winter. Through a chance meeting with Seawall Motel owners David and Vicki Lloyd, the Common Good operated until May 2015 in a spacious former restaurant, overlooking the sea. Starting June 2015 we we began operating at our new downtown location, 19 Clark Point Road, in the Post Office building of SW Harbor. In summer we raise funds by servepopovers every morning 7 days a week right up until Columbus Day in October, In November 2015 we will start our full range of winter programs at the new location. ( see below)
Each winter for six years some 3,000 patrons have been served more than 10,000 bowls of soup and countless salads, quiches, popovers, hot cups of coffee and tea, apple crisps and other wholesome desserts. But the Common Good is far more than a traditional “soup kitchen”– it has evolved into a unique and innovative organization providing not only food, but healthful natural food, nutritional education, and community warmth for all who seek it.
From November through April, in the economic “off season” when many people are struggling to make ends meet, the Common Good draws people from all over Mount Desert Island to its weekly meals. Extra food is prepared for distribution to people in need who are unable to get out. January through March the Common Good also hosts Cabin Fever Saturday Nights where families can have an evening meal out together with music and fun activities for very low cost. These events are attended by people from all walks of life, who come together in the cold months to enjoy live music, conversation and the warmth of each others presence as well as good food. Another special program offered is free-to-the-public cooking classes to spread information about healthy eating and nutrition, such as cooking with whole foods, and using locally harvested produce and seafood.
At our meals, people put money in the bowl according to what they can afford. These optional donations, special fund raisers and an occasional contribution “out of the blue” as it were, have been the Common Good’s only sources of income. Our funding is all grass roots. There is no governmental institutional or foundation support of any kind.
The Common Good is succeeding in its mission to provide a community gathering place, education about food and nutrition, and meals that are truly delicious and nutritious, utilizing local ingredients whenever possible. Volunteers of all ages, from all walks of life, not only serve the larger community but form a cadre of committed souls who radiate goodwill among themselves and beyond. Bank presidents, film makers, carpenters, fishermen, mechanics, farmers, homemakers, college students, high school dropouts, young moms & dads, teachers, persons being rehabbed via community service, physicians, special needs students from MDI High School: they all come together to chop, peel, stir, serve, clean, and make it happen. With the guidance of our triumvirate of executive chefs, they produced 61 events in the 014-015, winter season alone.!
Our daily summer popover service was initiated in June 2012 in order to attract donations from our summer vistors. It provides the funds necessary to operate our community programs in the winter. We need funds and volunteers at this time to enable us to move smoothly and be up and running in our new location for this coming summer season! Donation Checks can be made out to “Common Good Soup” and can be left in the donation box or mailed to Common Good , 106 Seawall Road, SW Harbor, ME 04679. For more information visit the common good community on facebook, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, call 207-266-2733 or see the book Cooking for the Common Good: The Birth of a Natural Foods Soup Kitchen.
Call Us: +1.2072662733