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Quilters visiting area during rally
Pat Ayers, left, and Hilda Ayers of Martinsville wear shirts promoting the 2012 Virginia Quilt Shop Rally which will end Sunday.
Friday, July 13, 2012
Quilting enthusiasts are visiting the area as part of the four-day 2012 Virginia Quilt Shop Rally, which began Thursday.
The rally includes six quilt shops across the region, including The Sewing Studio in Martinsville, and for the first time, the Martinsville-Henry County Visitor Center/The Artisan Center.
Participating quilters are visiting each stop to collect stamps on a quilting license. Quilters who visit all seven stops during the four days will be entered into a drawing.
At each stop the participants will receive a free quilting pattern. Each shop has created an original project using Island Batik design exclusive fabric. The fabric will be offered for sale at the shops, but no purchase is needed to take part in the rally.
Jennifer Doss, tourism director for Martinsville-Henry County, said Thursday that on the first day of the rally, at least 240 quilters stopped at the Visitors Center and Sewing Studio. They were from other areas of Virginia as well as North and South Carolina, West Virginia, Tennessee and Pennsylvania.
“We are so excited about this year’s rally and can’t wait to see who will visit,” said Brenda Feeny, one of the rally coordinators and owner of The Sewing Studio, 1310 S. Memorial Blvd., Martinsville. “In past years, we’ve had visitors from as far away as England. The rally is fun for quilters of all ages.”
The Sewing Studio is providing a Babylock Grace machine, valued at $699.99, as one of the rally prizes. Sew Biz in Roanoke is providing a Bernina machine.
The Martinsville-Henry County Visitor Center/The Artisan Center, 545 W. Church St., is hosting a quilt show featuring quilts from both past rally participants and local talent. The public can vote for their favorites, and the winner in each category will receive a basket of locally made products.
Hours for all stops are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. today and Saturday and 1-4 p.m. Sunday.
“When we heard about the Quilt Shop Rally last year, we definitely wanted to get involved in the program so that we can help showcase the wonderful arts and culture venues that our area has to offer,” Doss said.
“By partnering with the six other quilt shops we are able to introduce facilities such as Patrick Henry Community College’s Artisan Center to the visiting quilters as well as promote upcoming events such as Piedmont Arts exhibit ‘The Art Of The Quilt,’ which will open later in the fall,” she added.
Rally locations, in addition to the two local stops, are: Sew Biz, 92 & 94 Harvey St., Roanoke; Radford Creative Quilting, 6342 Peters Creek Road, Roanoke; Quilted Expressions, 3622 Old Forest Road, Lynchburg; Quilting Connection, 25174 Virgil Goode Highway, Boones Mill; Sew What Fabrics & Batiks Etcetera, 460 E. Main St., Wytheville.