We hosted our first neighborhood soup night last night. Some friends of our have been hosting their own for a year or two. I’ve always loved the idea and finally took action and planned our own.
And…yay!…people came! We invited everyone on our block (and a few others) to come between 5pm and 7pm and to bring something to share. We provided split pea soup, some drinks, plates, and utensils.
The food was great…ranging from chips to lasagna to (a quite yummy) prune cake. The kids ran around playing. People talked and interacted. One of our neighbors brought his mandolin and played a few songs. There was interest in doing it again which was great news since we had already decided to keep doing this on a monthly basis.
I grew up in a small town where school and church dinners brought out a lot of the community. In a city–especially a city with an open enrollment policy for the city schools–neighbors don’t have as much encouragement to get to know one another and socialize on a regular basis.
This is unfortunate and something I want to change on my street, especially as my children become more independent and want to play in the front yard. I want to know my neighbors. I want my kids to know our neighbors and I want my neighbors to know who we are and where these two children belong (as well as the black dog that runs up and down the street without a collar or leash…but that’s another post).
We spend most of our time living next door to people we hardly know. In my neighborhood–where the houses are oriented to the backyard–we have to work to get people into their front yards so we can communicate and learn to care for one another.
After four years in our neighborhood, soup night was our first attempt to really open the door. We know our neighbors on all sides of us and across the street…and now we know a few more.