Home / News / Quilters, bidders show support at Life Skills Quilt Auction

Quilters, bidders show support at Life Skills Quilt Auction

Aug 18, 2023Aug 18, 2023

LE MARS — It may have been toasty warm outside Saturday afternoon at the Plymouth County Fair, but inside Century Hall, the air conditioning gave bidders an extra incentive to purchase a quilt or two at the 26th Life Skills Foundation Quilt Auction.

When the final “sold” rang out, a total of $23,405 was raised with the sale of 75 quilts and 15 silent auction items.

The auction is a fundraiser for Life Skills Training Center, which works with mentally disabled adults with a goal to give them their highest desired level of independence, according to Life Skills Marketing and Development Coordinator Shelly Thomson.

Bidding was brisk during the auction, with several new bidders taking part this year, in addition to those who return year after year.

The top three bids brought in $3,000 for the cause.

The top bid of $1,050 was for a 120x120” quilt, “Parisian Windows,” which featured contemporary greige toned pieces with the backing featuring a shimmer fabric also featured in the quilt top. The quilt was constructed and donated by Virginia Freyermuth, with long-arm machine quilting done by Terri Vander Bosch of Rock Valley.

An 88x104” quilt donated anonymously via Cleo Ahrendsen brought a bid of $1,000. The pattern, “9 Patches in 9 Patches,” is a vintage quilt.

Coming in with a $950 bid was a 91x100” quilt titled “Red Christmas,” done in colors of cream and reds. The quilt was donated and made by Rosemary Cronin.

A quilt donated by Shirley Schroeder made with Harley-Davidson T-shirt squares brought $400, while a 70x72” quilt of dinosaurs with matching pillowcase brought a $375 bid by a happy little girl. That quilt was donated by Pat Siebens.

The variety of quilts, from baby quilts to wall panels, with Christmas and holiday themes to those just for kids, and all sizes in between, gave bidders the opportunity to find that “just right” quilt to purchase.

Thomson said the big surprise for her was the silent auction.

“The silent auction netted over $1,000 this year,” she said. “We changed the silent auction up a little and actually had different quilts and items on it. It was a pleasant surprise.”

The big winners, of course, are the clients of Life Skills, who benefit from the funds raised. They also take part in the auction.

“As you could see in the clients’ faces as they were holding up the items on the stage and as they were interacting with the fair royalty, they really enjoy it,” Thomson said.

Members of the Plymouth County Fair royalty court assisted in displaying each quilt on the stage during the auction.

“We are always looking for new bidders. Invite your friends. It’s a fun day at the fair, even if you don’t bid. The quilts are definitely pieces of art. The quilters continue to definitely bring their ‘A’ game every year and every year they outdo themselves,” she said.

“I was incredibly pleased with the whole day, with my staff and board members, and of course, Brock Auction Co., who are outstanding for us every year,” Thomson continued. “But also a big thank you to Plymouth County Fair Board for allowing us to have all those activities in the fair.”

Thomson called it a very successful week for Life Skills, which also conducted business in the Pioneer Village Ice House and held its annual Cow Chip Bingo contest on Sunday.

“The Ice House was a hit this year. The first day, it was a record-breaking one day for us,” she said.

Partly cloudy skies in the morning will give way to cloudy skies during the afternoon. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. High 86F. Winds ESE at 5 to 10 mph..

Partial cloudiness early, with scattered showers and thunderstorms later during the night. Low 67F. Winds ESE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 40%.

Updated: August 4, 2023 @ 12:38 am

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