Quilt auction returns to the fair

Wednesday, July 21, 2021
(Photo Contributed) Life Skills Training Center client Melissa Rotta, tries out a special lap quilt with pockets which will be on the Life Skills Foundation annual Quilt Auction.

PLYMOUTH CO. — After conducting its first ever online auction in 2020, the Life Skills Foundation Quilt Auction will return to its home at the Plymouth County Fair.

The 24th annual auction will be held at 2 p.m., Saturday, July 31, in Century Hall.

Shelly Thomson, Life Skills marketing development coordinator, said the online auction went pretty good, due to the fact that it was first time she had ever done it, and it was all new territory.

“People did find it, and we were pleasantly surprised how it turned out,” she said.

They did two auctions, one in July and a second one in December, where they also sold Christmas ornaments.

“It went good, but we are very happy to be back at the fairgrounds. Life is as normal as can be at this point,” Thomson said.

“Our clients are looking forward to it as well. They get a big kick out of being out there that day. They help us with the auction, holding the quilts up. They get to go up on stage with the auctioneers and they think that’s a big deal,” she added.

The quilts have been showcased on the Life Skills Facebook page as well as a Facebook page for quilts only.

By mid-July, Thomson counted 52 quilts donated, with more expected.

“That makes a nice auction number,” she said. “We’ll have anywhere from 50 to 60 quilts. They get processed through quickly and they keep everyone there in their seats.

“We have been seeing a nice variety of quilts coming through. This year we had one individual from Clive, Iowa, come in and donate the lap quilts to us. But they are lap quilts with a twist. They actually have got pockets, like you were wearing a hoodie sweatshirt and you could slide your hands in there,” Thomson said with excitement.

“They are just the cutest things but they have pockets on these. Some are regular size like wearing in a wheelchair, but some are larger size you could use while sitting back in the recliner, with a place for the remote or kleenexs, or cough drops, or the candy bars you just didn’t want your kids to see,” she said.

The quilt auction also has a number of faithful quilters who donate to the cause.

“Ginny Freyermuth, Rosemary Cronin, and Becky Wiersma, are some of our larger donors that donate a number of quilts to us every year. They came through for us again this year and do such beautiful work,” Thomson said.

This year, a quilt will reappear on the auction.

“We have one individual who had purchased quilts in the past from us, and she is re-gifting us with some of those quilts. One of those quilts is one of our tried-and-true favorites here, (quilter) Della Brouillette. It’s one of the gorgeous, old fashion star patterns, and it’s beautiful. That should be a family heirloom for somebody,” Thomson said.

Doors to the quilt auction will open at 1 p.m. at Century Hall, giving people an opportunity to come in and look at the quilts.

“Plus it’s nice and air conditioning in there,” Thomson said.

The quilts are now on display at Northwest Bank until a couple days before the auction.

The quilt auction isn’t the only activity fair which carries the Life Skills name.

The Ice House in Pioneer Village is getting prepared for fair visitors.

“Cow Chip Bingo tickets are available at the banks, but you better buy those tickets pretty fast because they are selling like crazy, and they will sell out this year,” Thomson said.

Tickets may be purchased at banks in the county, and are priced at $5 each. The ticket gives the purchaser a chance on $1,000. The Cow Chip Bingo event is held at 2 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 1, at the fairgrounds, when a cow will make a “deposit” on one of the bingo squares.

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