Tuesday, October 16, 2007

A Day in the Country

On Saturday, October 13, twenty seven members of The Museum Quilt Guild took a bus tour of the Country Barn Trail in Orleans County, NY. This project was created by quilter and fifth generation farmer, Lora Partyka, after hearing about a similar project in Iowa. She never consulted with anyone about funding, she just painted a quilt block that was relevant to her and hung it on her barn. Friends and neighbors, upon seeing hers, decided they'd like to join her and the project has taken off at a very rapid pace.

The block on Lora's barn is titled, aptly, The Farmer's Daughter. Her farm includes a seasonal market, which also serves ice cream and a limited menu and has charming country wares for sale. Many of the blocks are recreated in smaller form for purchase.

The tour includes a volunteer- one of the participants in the project- who rides along on the bus and tells stories about the blocks to give visitors insight into why certain blocks were chosen. One family chose "Railroad Crossing" (above) as the railroad formerly passed through the property. Another family's members enjoy walking when they can see the stars, so they chose a lone star block they titled "Constellation"

The blocks make an interesting addition to the scenery of the area and were well worth the day's drive. Since 30 or more blocks are in the planning stages, we may go again next summer!