LIGONIER (PA) 4th “SOUP’S ON” EVENT 2013
Saturday, 23 March 2013
COME AND GET IT!
The almost-clement day—no precipitation in the form of rain, sleet, or snow—temperature not quite warm enough to diss the jacket—just perfect for a noontime meal of hot soup.
Er, hot soups—17 to be exact, everything from Transylvania Fish Soup to white kickin’s chicken chili to 4 mushroom soups to the one that expressed all the tastes of the day, Thanksgiving Dinner soup.
It was a day when the local restaurants and businesses around the Gazebo marking the town center and along its four spokes joined together to offer the day’s taste treats to those who participated.
Many of the local businesses sponsored a soup table to a restaurant, which prepared one of their soups to serve in small amounts. Believe me, the small samples filled the empty belly very quickly. After a while the common statement was “I’m so full…the soup’s were so good.”
At many of the stops they served meat-based soup. I had the opportunity to feast on Monte’s share of lobster bisque (Ligonier Tavern), ham & bean (Ligonier Camp & Conference Center), and Irish potato soup (Ligonier Lanes/Wicked Googly) because he is a vegetarian.
In some cases the meat-based soups had generous broth and noodle, so Monte could eat the soup—homemade chicken noodle (Calvary United Methodist Church) and cheesy potato soup with bacon (Bethlen Communities).
However, I didn’t get double-feasting of cream of broccoli (Heritage United Methodist Church), tomato basil (Flavors Café), or roasted cauliflower and brie (The Kitchen on Main),
Although the program for the day was that non-restaurant businesses would host restaurant businesses, there was one exception.
A restaurant, Ligonier Creamery, hosted a non-restaurant, the Ligonier Volunteer Hose Company #1, which offered a generous sample of the Firehouse Chili they make for their volunteers. One of the firemen serving told me they played down the hot spices for the public offering.
A bonus for the day was the exercise. A person visiting every stop, like we did, starting at the far east of East Main Street (Rustic Country Treasures and Swansdown Antiques & Gifts) and ending at the stores marking the far west on West Main Street (Pamela’s Golden Touch and Merjo on Main Street), then back to the Diamond, had a pretty good hike. This walk was increased by visiting the Toy Box on South Market Street and the YMCA just west of North Market Street.
With total transparency I must disclose that Monte and I skipped one stop: Betsy’s of Ligonier. They were serving stuffed pepper soup from the Diamond Café (which always seems to serve a good meal). Because Monte doesn’t eat meat and I detest peppers it seemed wise not to stop there. But we met a gentleman on the street in passing who raved about the soup, and said I could post his picture:
I must say we thoroughly enjoyed the tastes of the day. My tastes ran to the mushroom soups, while Monte preferred the cream of broccoli. As we went to the YMCA numerous others praised the Thanksgiving Dinner soup.
It seems the Ligonier Chamber of Commerce, sponsor of the event, has discovered a winning fundraiser.
Just before we returned to our car, at the end of the event, someone asked me if I had chosen my favorite soup before I left. I said yes, but my ballot is always secret, just like it is at the political voting polls.