Warm up from the winter weather with a bowl — or six cups — of homemade soup.

The 2019 A Taste of Soup and Art Exhibit will be held from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. next Saturday at the Carrollton Community House.

“It’s a fun time of community involvement,” said Pam Lee, an event organizer. “People have been weathered in with rain, and the first weekend of February has almost always been a pretty weekend. ... They get out, and they visit and taste the good soup, visit with the artists and take things home with them.”

A Taste of Soup and Art Exhibit began in 2007 as a way to raise funds to help with purchases for the Carrollton-North Carrollton Library and recognize the many talented artists in Carroll County. When the Friends of the Library decided not to host the 2019 event, the Carroll Society for the Preservation of Antiquities decided to take the project. Funds will be used to help preserve the buildings owned by the society.

“The Antiquities Society is always looking for ways to make money because we have three buildings that we have to keep up. So we met, and said yes we’ll do it,” said Lee, who is a member of both the Friends of the Library and the Antiquities Society. “We’re looking forward to continuing this tradition.”

Finding new and different recipes for the event each year is not that hard of a task, said Lee, because “we have so many good cooks in Carroll County.”

“And we try soup recipes out all year on our families,” she said. “Then, when we get together, we bring the ones that our families have liked the most, and that’s what we pick from.”

The featured soups this year are cozy pasta Parmesan soup, sausage and grits chowder, turnip green soup, nacho potato soup, tortellini beef soup and pizza soup.

“We have an interesting combination this year,” said Lee. “There are some that you just literally open cans and heat it up. Then, we’ve got some that require a little bit more preparation, and we’ve got some that take much longer to prepare. So we’ve got something for everybody.”

Lee said one of her favorites is the pizza soup.

“I tried that for my family, and we liked it,” she said. “They are all good.”

While the event featured a turnip green soup the first year it started, this year’s turnip green soup is a different recipe.

“This one uses canned turnip greens, which I like to have recipes like that because I can keep the things needed in the pantry, and I can pull them out whenever I need them.”

Lee, who has a background in home economics, oversees one of the toughest jobs during the preparation of A Taste of Soup.

Since most recipes are made for servings of four to eight, Lee has to convert the measurements of each recipe’s ingredients into the amount needed to cook for a large crowd.

“It has taken some experience,” she said. “If the recipe tells me it makes eight 1-cup servings, that’s real easy to figure out. But if a recipe doesn’t have how many servings or if it says nothing, then I have to take the ounces of liquid and ounces of vegetables or whatever is in the recipe and add it all up and divide it up, and it gets really interesting sometimes.”

The featured artists will be Christina Alford, painting; Rosiland Daves, pottery; Memrie Turner and Stephanie Clanton, both photography; and Shonna McGehee, cakes.

McGehee will also make cupcakes for the event’s dessert and a cake that will be given away as a door prize. Other door prizes will also be given away.

The theme of the event is “A Look Around Carrollton,” and the community house will be decorated with pictures of historical buildings.

“We’ve got all of these pictures of old buildings, and some of them are no longer standing,” said Lee. “Back during the Pilgrimage, one of our members posted a lot of old pictures of buildings on Facebook, and people were just fascinated. They all reminisced about what they remembered about the buildings, which was really great for the town because now we’ve got history that we didn’t necessarily have before.”

A cook book featuring recipes of all the event’s soups will be given to all who attend and will also include historic buildings in Carroll County.

The event also showcases the Carrollton Community House, which the town recently nominated for the National Register of Historic Places.

“It was built in 1935 and 1936,” said Lee. “It is a Depression WPA — Works Progress Administration — project. It was one of many projects that was done to put people back to work during the Depression. It was built with Carroll County logs and Carroll County labor.”

Lee said the building has served as a venue for everything from birthday parties for children and adults to wedding parties and receptions to repast gatherings.

“It’s been used from the cradle to the grave,” she said.

The Antiquities Society owns the Merrill Museum and the Conservative building and has a 99-year lease with the county on the old Carroll County jail.

All proceeds from A Taste of Soup will go toward some of the repairs and upgrades that the buildings need.

Although a tray to carry the soup cups will be provided, those attending are encouraged to bring their own muffin tins to set the cups of soup in for a steadier tray. A tin for six will work, but a tin for a dozen muffins will have space for the cornbread, crackers and a drink.

Tickets are sold at the Carrollton Town Hall and Water Department, the North Carrollton Town Hall and Water Department and by members of the Antiquities Society. Most of the tickets are sold before the event because of limited seating. A few may be available at the door. Tickets are $10 each.

To check on availability of tickets, call the Carrollton Town Hall at 237-4600 or the North Carrollton Town Hall at 237-9268. For more information about the event, call Lee at 237-6910.

Contact Ruthie Robison at 581-7233 or rrobison@gwcommonwealth.com.

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