Members of the Cape Coral Quilters Guild displayed 100 of their hand-made items Wednesday at Gulf Coast Village.
Patti Bartkowski, who is the charity community service member for the Cape Coral Quilters Guild, said approximately 30 of the group's 85 members had quilts on display during the annual quilt event, with many showcasing four or five of their quilts.
The event started 8 years ago when Bartkowski's parents were residents at Gulf Coast Village because she wanted to provide the public with evidence of what the members of the guild make. She explained that the event also provides members of the guild with the opportunity to see what other members have made.
Cape Coral Quilters Guild members Irene Henrikson, right, and Sibyl Tarbell take a close look at a quilt during the group's annual exhibit Wednesday at Gulf Coast Village.
The yearly quilt display typically attracts a good crowd, she explained, because members of the guild, along with residents of Gulf Coast Village, stroll through a room looking at the numerous quilts that are draped over chairs for everyone to enjoy.
When asked what she enjoys most about being a member of the Quilters Guild, Bartkowski responded, "the people."
"We all have a hobby that we all enjoy doing," she said.
Sharon Baz decided to take advantage of the event Wednesday morning because she became a member of the guild Monday after attending her first meeting. After 16 years of traveling to Cape Coral from Ohio during the winter, she decided it was time to find something to do to fill her time.
"Finally on Monday, I had to find out more about it," she explained about the Cape Coral Quilters Guild. "I'm happy I found this and got the information."
Baz has been quilting "off and on" for many years. She explained that now she "will have all the time" to pursue quilting once again due to her winter stay in Cape Coral.
Irene Henrikson and Bea Post strolled around the room admiring their fellow members work Wednesday morning, while stopping and looking at many along the way.
Henrikson, who comes to Cape Coral every winter from Pennsylvania, said she joined the guild about four years ago. She said she enjoys it because new friendships are made, along with learning new techniques and being exposed to a slew of diversity of quilters.
Twenty-five years ago Henrikson began the craft of quilting by making tote bags and jackets. She now creates blankets and wall hangings.
Post, who joined the guild three years ago, said she began quilting five or six years ago.
One of her quilts, which was on display Wednesday, is a gift for her granddaughter once she graduates from college. The surprise, which is a queen-sized quilt, incorporates her favorite color of yellow and was finished in a week.
"It was fun," Post said about making the quilt.
She said she enjoys the event because it "exposes other people to the world of quilting."
On March 28, Bartkowski said they will be donating 200 quilts to a number of Cape Coral charities. She explained that last year they provided quilts to eight organizations that included a nursing home, Cape Coral Hospital, the Cape Coral Police Department and the Cape Coral Fire Department. The quilts are made with donated materials from the members of the guild and the public.
The Cape Coral Quilters Guild meets every Monday at the Christ Lutheran Church. Bartkowski said the guild offers classes, retreats twice a year to Sebring and bus trips.
Baz said she is happy she became a member because "they will teach you everything" you need to know even if you do not have any experience.