There are only a few things that embody the heart, comfort and beauty of a home more than a quilt. Those soft, fabric sandwiches of love stitched together with patience and pride, and employed to wrap babies, cover beds or hang on walls. They are treasured heirlooms passed down through generations, or given to someone in need to provide peace amid chaos. This weekend, the buildings of Redwood Acres Fairgrounds come alive with hundreds of quilts, quilted items and the people who love them, as the Redwood Empire Quilters Guild presents its biennial Heart of the Redwoods Quilt Show.
Stroll the marketplace, browse vendors and watch antique bed turnings. Check out "Brilliance," the guild's 2015 opportunity quilt, pieced together from fabric donated from the family of a guild member who recently passed away. With more than 300 quilts on display, there's something for each of the estimated 1,300 to 1,500 people who attend. One thing that sets the show apart from others is that it is not juried or judged. Cheryl Pekar, current webmaster and past president of the guild explains, "We want everyone, from beginner to experienced, at the show. We want to encourage everyone of all levels."
Attending is an opportunity to not only see incredible works of art and gather supplies to make your own, but also to support the guild's many community efforts. The group sews 600 to 1,000 quilts a year for local organizations, including the Red Cross, Salvation Army and Hospice of Humboldt. It also helps with the care and preservation of quilts at the Clark Memorial Museum.
So, stitch together a couple of days to see it all: Saturday, July 18 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, July 18 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (a two-day pass is $8 for adults $6 for seniors, children under 12 are free).