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Dozens of quilts on display at show

The Hawk Eye - 3/16/2017

March 16--MIDDLETOWN -- Thirteen quilts created through the Quilts of Valor project will be awarded to area military veterans during the biannual Hawkeye Heritage Quilt Guild Show this weekend.

The show, which takes place only once every two years, will feature more than 150 quilts from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the U.S. Army Reserve Center in Middletown. The name of this year's show is "Quilts in Bloom," and admission price is $5.

"We decided to do the show in the spring instead of the fall this time, so more people could come," said Hawkeye Heritage Quilt Guild member Arlys Fritz. "It's a large show."

The highlight of the show will be the presentation of quilts to area veterans at 1 p.m. Friday and 1 p.m. Saturday. The Quilts of Valor is a national foundation that awards handmade quilts to veterans and service members, and the quilts usually are made by local guilds.

Fritz kicked-started the project locally about two years ago, and has helped award quilts to 86 area war veterans since then -- counting the dozen veterans who will receive quilts Friday and Saturday. She is now the southeast Iowa coordinator for Quilts of Valor.

"The Quilts of Valor is our way of giving back to the veterans who have sacrificed so much. We feel like it's our patriotic duty, and we feel grateful for their service," Fritz said.

Fritz became interested in the Quilts of Valor project after her brother was awarded a quilt for his military service, and she didn't have much trouble drumming up interest in her guild.

"We consider Quilts of Valor our version of the Purple Heart," she said.

More than 152,000 quilts have been awarded or shipped to veterans since the Quilts for Valor foundation was started in 2003.

"Almost all of the quilts are red, white and blue, and they have a preferred size of 60 to 80 inches, so they can completely cover a veteran," Fritz said.

Besides the Quilts of Valor presentation, the Hawkeye Heritage Quilt Guild Show will include vendors, raffle quilts, raffle baskets, demonstrations, resale sewing items and food provided by the ladies of Peace Lutheran Church.

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(c)2017 The Hawk Eye (Burlington, Iowa)

Visit The Hawk Eye (Burlington, Iowa) at www.thehawkeye.com

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