All patrons will receive a souvenir bowl and an opportunity to vote for their favorite soup at the 20th Bowls & Books Wednesday at the Rhode Center for the Arts.

Soup’s on! Bowls & Books to make its triumphant return Wednesday

20th running of popular event to include 16 local restaurants and two sessions at Rhode Center for the Arts


Content provided by our freelance contributors.

Featuring 16 local restaurants and a variety of tasty soups, Bowls & Books returns for the first time since 2019 on Wednesday (March 29) at Rhode Center for the Arts, 514 56th St.

Organizer Sharon Rossow with her mother, Judy, who started the event in 2001.

And the anticipation couldn’t be greater.

“Everyone I’ve talked to is super excited to have this event back,” said organizer Sharon Rossow, whose mother Judy Rossow started the event in 2001. “The restaurants think it could be really big.”

The 20th running of the event includes a lunch (11 a.m. to 1 p.m.) and dinner (5 to 7 p.m.) session. 

The cost is $20 for adults and $15 for senior citizens and children. Tickets are available online at They can also be purchased at Pollard Gallery, Copy Center and at the door.

All patrons receive a souvenir bowl and an opportunity to vote for their favorite soup. The top vote-getters for each session receive a plaque and local bragging rights.

All proceeds benefit ongoing restoration and upkeep at the Rhode Center for the Arts.

Judy Rossow was the former Lakeshore BID president, Rotary Club of Kenosha president and Kenoshan of the Year who was instrumental in preserving the Rhode Center for the Arts.

She died on March 20, 2021.

“I watched her do this event for so many years,” Sharon Rossow said. “I’ve also inherited her anxiety over it. She got started in January and would be stressed out about it until the day of. You just never know how many people are going to show up.”

Local restaurants serving a variety of soups include:

Lunch (11 a.m. to 1 p.m.)

Ashling on the Lough — Irish Root

Franks Diner — Swedish Meatball Stroganoff

Kaiser’s Pizza & Pub — Chicken Dumpling

Morelli’s Deli Catering — Stuffed Green Pepper

Ono Kenosha — Japanese Curry

PUBLIC Craft Brewing Co. — Zupa di Amore

Ruffolo’s Pizza — Chicken Alfredo Tortellini

Villa D’ Carlo — Spicy Italian Pesto

Waterfront Warehouse Lasagna soup with an Alfredo sauce drizzle
Boat House Pub & Eatery New England Clam Chowder

Dinner (5 to 7 p.m.)

Boat House Pub & Eatery — New England Clam Chowder

Captain Mike’s — Smoked Kielbasa and Kraut

The Coffee Pot — Cajun Potato with Andouille Sausage

Coopers Uptown — Loaded Baked Potato

Cut Stone — Supreme Pizza

Twisted Cuisine — Chicken & Corn Chowder

Union Park Tavern — Hungarian Goulash

Waterfront Warehouse — Lasagna

First-time participants include Ashling on the Lough, Ono Kenosha, PUBLIC Craft Brewing Co., Coopers Uptown, Waterfront Warehouse and Cut Stone.

Cut Stone, owned by Kenosha native Riki Tagliapietra, is a downtown pizzeria and fire truck food truck serving wood-fired Neapolitan-style pizza.

Tagliapietra is unveiling a Supreme Pizza soup.

“Although soup isn’t usually on our menu, supporting our community is always the special of the day,” Tagliapietra said. “We can’t wait to be a part of such an amazing institution like Bowls and Books.”

Local author Aliyah Jackson

The event includes booths from eight local authors with books available for purchase and signing opportunities. Authors include Mike Schumacher, M.P. McDonald, Joe Campolo, Aliyah Jackson, John Hambrock, Anne Hambrock, Dan Stika and Richard Bell.

Bowls & Books was canceled each of the past three years due to the pandemic. The 2020 event was canceled a week before it was scheduled due to safety precautions.

Rossow said the event wouldn’t be possible without support from Pollard Gallery artists/volunteers, Lakeside Players and Lakeside Players president Katie Gray.

“It was kind of up in the air whether it would ever come back,” Rossow said. “We’re excited it is.”