Journal class

River Country Quilt Show back after pandemic hiatus

Like much of the planet, the River Country Quilt Show took a two-year hiatus to ride out the worst of the pandemic, but the show returns Friday to Jacksonville High School.

“We’re thrilled to be back,” said Barbara Suelter, president of publicity for the show. “The last show was in 2019. It’s been (annual) in the past, except for a year when the high school was installing a sprinkler system” and the space wasn’t available.

As the show draws closer, members of the quilt show committee — and Jacksonville quilters — are relieved conditions look as if it will continue.


“We thought we would give it a try this year,” Suelter said. “When we have to make a decision, it’s usually at the end of the previous year or in January.”

Organizers knew a lot could go wrong with the pandemic in the six months between the decision to hold the show and the show, but they were eager to give it a try, she said.

They also knew what it took to put on the event, so planning didn’t require too many meetings during spikes in infection rates, Suelter said, noting that she sent out 850 individual flyers on the event and packages to central Illinois quilt stores. and Eastern Missouri – approximately 2,600 flyers in total.

Now they’re sorting through quilt entries – the deadline for submissions was July 14, although they’ve been known to have a few late entries from people mailing in their entries.

“It’s usually the last few days (before the deadline) or even a day or two after the deadline that we get an influx of entries,” Suelter said. “We never get too excited until a day or two after the deadline because some people send them in the mail.”

She expects a good performance.

“A lot of people are talking about it,” she said. “A lot of people have delivered their apps. It’s hard to predict (the number of entries). Each year is very different.

The show tends to attract around 200 padded entries.

“It’s not just quilts,” Suelter said. “Sometimes it’s chairs. We’ve had purses, we’ve had jackets, wall hangings, quilts. … We never know what’s going to happen.

A 108-inch square quilt will also be raffled off, along with a sewing machine. Raffle tickets will be available during the show with proceeds going to Toss for Autism. Several textile art objects will be presented in a silent auction.

The show will also include bed shoots featuring antique quilts, 14 vendor booths and food.

“We try to do it mostly like it’s been done before,” Suelter said of the show. “We thought rather than tackle something different or new (on the way back), we would do what we did.”

Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. July 30. Admission is $6 and is valid for both days.