Soup Sisters to bring ‘The Big Stir’ to town next month

February 22, 2019   ·   0 Comments

By Mike Baker

On the eve of its third anniversary in Dufferin County, Soup Sisters & Broth Brothers is preparing to bring an event unlike any other to the local community. 

Lori Robertshaw and her gang of cooking extraordinaires are bringing The Big Stir to town on March 3. The event is a nod to Soup Sisters’ national Soup It Forward Day and will see locals band together for a full-day of soup making to benefit four non-profit organizations – Family Transition Place, Choices Youth Shelter, the Orangeville Food Bank and The Lighthouse. 

“Soup Sisters is a wonderful organization that has taken on a new life in Orangeville and Dufferin County,” Ms. Robertshaw told the Citizen. “It’s been an exciting three years since our launch. The community has been incredibly supportive so far, now we’re asking for them to be supportive once again.”

Soup Sisters & Broth Brothers was founded by Sharon Hapton in Calgary back in 2009 and today boasts 31 chapters across Canada and the United States. In total, more than 1.5 million servings of soup have been delivered to thousands of shelters across the continent. According to the organization’s website, Soup Sisters & Broth Brothers has a growing network of more than 50,000 people across North America. 

Locally, Ms. Robertshaw has Big plans for The Big Stir. With three separate cooking times scheduled, she hopes to see up to 100 local residents take part in a combined effort to make 250 litres of delicious home-made chicken soup. 

“Our mandate through Soup Sisters is to provide nourishing meals for women, children and youth in crisis. During our first three years as an organization, we have focused entirely on providing meals to Family Transition Place, but with the Big Stir we wanted to go one step further. Our goal is to bring in enough people to make enough soup so that we can share it with four incredibly important organizations in our community.”

With her partners in crime Terry Doel and Vanessa Kreuzer, owners of Lavender Blue Catering, Lori has the “perfect team” to lead such an ambitious undertaking. Now, the trio needs the community to buy in.

At present, Lori notes The Big Stir is approximately 25 percent full – meaning another 70 people at least are required to meet the quota. Sessions are being held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Community Living Dufferin building on County Road 3. Lori is hoping to sign up at least 30 locals for each session. The cost to participate is $55 per person, which goes towards ingredients and will include appetizers and a swag bag jam packed with local goodies from Orangeville-area businesses. 

“This is a call to action of sorts. We’ve been a little late out of the game, but we have everything in place now and we’re optimistic of reaching our goal,” Lori said. “It will be a fun two hours. People will come in, strap on an apron, roll up their sleeves and get to work. It’s going to be a great atmosphere – we’ll have representatives from FTP and Choices there. We’re really looking forward to it.”

Since its official launch in the community almost exactly three years ago, Soup Sisters & Broth Brothers has held eight gatherings per year, making different friends, and soups, along the way. The regularly scheduled sessions are “almost always sold out”, says Ms. Robertshaw, so The Big Stir will provide the perfect opportunity for locals to see what all the fuss is about.

“Don’t be afraid to come by yourself, in a group, with friends, whatever you want to do. Soup Sisters & Broth Brothers can be enjoyed by absolutely anyone. I promise, if you give us a chance, we will exceed your expectations,” Lori said. 

For more information on Soup Sisters & Broth Brothers, visit

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