Intelligencer Journal/Lancaster New Era
A patchwork of options on offer during QuiltWeek Event to draw 20,000 people
BY BERNARD HARRIS, Staff Writer
Vendors from as near as New Holland and Ronks and as far away as San Francisco and Cairo set up in preparation at the Lancaster County Convention Center on Tuesday.
This morning, the first of more than 20,000 people are expected to arrive at the downtown Lancaster meeting center for the American Quilters Society's QuiltWeek.
The four days of shows, sales and classes begin at 9 a.m.
People coming to downtown Lancaster, whether for the show or not, are likely to see traffic congestion on city streets and find parking garages full. The show continues through 5 p.m. Saturday.
Satellite parking for quilters will be available at Clipper Magazine Stadium, 650 N. Prince St. A shuttle bus will convey quilt show attendees to the Convention Center.
Show classes and other events are also being held at Southern Market Center, 100 S. Queen St., and Millersville University's Ware Center, 42 N. Prince St.
The show, in its fourth year in Lancaster, is one of the largest events held at the convention center.
The economic bump from the show is expected to be felt countywide. Show attendees are expected to spend about $7.25 million on hotels, restaurants and shopping, said Joel Cliff, spokesman for the Pennsylvania Dutch Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Some 4,000 hotel rooms are expected to be booked as a result of the show.
The show also includes a contest with 300 quilts being judged in a variety of categories. Contestants came from 43 states and competed for $44,000 in prize money.
The "best in show" award was bestowed on the quilt "Sampling the Silk Road," by Christine Wickert of Penfield, N.Y.
The hand-stitched silk quilt had a different sewing pattern for each square, as well as appliqu' and beads.
"I haven't seen anything like this in a long, long time," said Michele Duffy, editor in chief of American Quilter Magazine, about the piece.
Duffy cited the exquisite detail, workmanship and the planning that Wickert put into the quilt.
The quilters who likely traveled the farthest to get to the show are Hosam Hanafy and Tarek Abdelhay, two tentmakers from Cairo.
Several of their appliqu' wall-hangings are displayed in the Heritage Ballroom, on the convention center's third level. They also will be doing demonstrations of their craft during the show.
Admission to the show is $14 daily, $11 for American Quilters Society members. There are also admission prices for two days at the event and for the entire show. The show will be open daily from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and 9 a.m. through 5 p.m. Saturday.
Two other quilt shows also are being held in Lancaster County this week. The Lancaster Spring Quilt Show is at the Lancaster Host Resort, 2300 Lincoln Highway East. And the Lancaster Quilt Show is across the street, at the Continental Inn.