Community service has always been a part of our family life. I am prone to volunteering myself silly and "quilting for charity" seems to be a regular activity for me.
Sept. 11th commemorations, however, always fall near my church's Dutch Fair. This annual autumn kick-off brings together the church and community in a large garage sale and family fair style event, which includes vendors, food, activities, a silent auction, book fair and ends with a chicken and dumplings dinner.
The table runners below are donations for the church's silent auction this year. In the name of full disclosure- my mother runs the silent auction and would have loved a full size quilt donation as well.
Both are made using fabulous fabrics and pieced with the 60 degree angle technique. The blue butterflies with gold accents used a center design with the only cuts at the ends. It's quilted on the obvious lines and free-motion quilted in the black center.
The Winter runner below was made from one stripe and pieced in the center.
The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative, www.alzquilts.org, is by far the organization I quilt for the most. With each large quilt I make, I set aside my scraps and they become donations to AAQI. All the profits from the sale of these little quilts (no larger than 9 by 12 inches) go directly to Alzheimer's Research. You can read all about it on the AAQI website.
Below is my "Double Chocolat." It's made entirely from the palette of Moda's new line of fabrics with the same title.
Once upon a time I went through a Bargello phase. (Didn't we all?)
Finally a day such as September 11th, like Memorial Day, includes lots of remembrances.
Below are four donations to AAQI completed by Emily, a member of my quilting guild, in memory of Mary. Mary was also a member of the guild and was tragically killed along with her husband in a late Spring 2012 car accident. The quilt from which these pieces came was found in Mary's stash and became not four, but 10 small works which will live on in the form of fund-raisers for Alzheimer's research. Thank you, Emily, for helping to keep Mary's memory alive through her art!
Lastly, on September 11th, 2001 I lived where I could see the smoke from the World Trade Towers and I lost my television signal immediately after watching the towers fall. It was a day none of us will ever forget.
Other than that, my only contact with a victim's family is through the Michael Canty Family Fun Run. Mike was a peer of mine, however older, in high school. I may have spoken to him once in the hallway, but otherwise, I did not know him well. He worked in the towers and died on Sept. 11th.
His family, however, has kept Mike's memory alive through a college scholarship fund for a local deserving high school student. Since 2002, the Canty family has sponsored a Fun Run, crafts, raffles and BBQ event on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend. It brought the community together to remember and to honor Mike, who, I've learned, may not have been running, but would definitely have enjoyed the beer and the fun of the day! This year was the last year the Michael Canty Family Fun Run would be held. The scholarship program, however, will continue. As of May 31, 2012, a total of $271,000 has been awarded in scholarships.
My children, seen above, ran in the children's race, made arts and crafts with all their heart, joined me in the adult race, and then ate chicken like it was going out of style on September 2nd of this year. They know that they were running to help put another kid through college.
I hope that my children will someday find a way to serve their community which as fulfilling as my "quilting for a cause" projects are to me..............until then, together we will run and we will remember.