Navigating the old fashioned way – with a map – we promptly got lost while searching for the last two barn quilts we wanted to visit near Mio, Michigan. Since we had no idea where we were much less where we were going but had plenty of gas, we just relaxed and enjoyed the beautiful Michigan spring countryside. Many miles down unpaved roads, we finally found a Garden Path quilt block located on a beautifully maintained private farm.
The block was chosen to express the family’s love of the land and gardening. The owner is the director of a local farmers market that serves Oscoda County, Michigan. The farm was picture-perfect with flower & vegetable gardens and a paddock with ponies.
We found a paved road and picked up speed so we naturally missed our next quilt block (twice) located at the Mio, Michigan Fairgrounds. The Ohio Star variation block is sponsored by the Au Sable Valley Engine & Tractor Club and hangs on the O.E. Kauffman Building. Preparations were underway for the annual Nor-east’r Traditional Music & Art Festival held the second weekend in June. They were also preparing to install another quilt block. The festival celebrates music, art and Northern Michigan’s cultural heritage & features blues, bluegrass, celtic, zydeco, folk, jazz, jam bands, country, Americana, world music, drumming & more. There are art shows & workshops with great food & unique vendors. Unfortunately, I had to fly home the day the festival started. But next year for sure!
Remember to check out upcoming quilt events – just click on the “Travelers” tab above! I’m posting shows as fast as I can.
Procrastinate – it frees up time to QUILT!
This site is designed to help traveling quilters locate shows, shops, guilds and quilt-related events in the locale they are visiting. I also include some textile and quilt-related facts that may be of interest.
While visiting our cottage on Lake Huron in Tawas, Michigan I discovered the Oscoda County Timberland Quilt Trail that showcases Barn Quilts, a growing phenomenon throughout the country. There are more than 3,000 quilt blocks adorning trails nationwide making the quilt trail movement the nation’s largest public arts project. Oscoda County has 12 quilt blocks displayed on barns, local businesses and private residences. Following the trail allows visitors to experience the culture and history of the area and makes for a lovely afternoon drive through stunning countryside.
We began in Mio, Michigan at the Stitches for You Quilt Shop where the owner Judy Utley, graciously provided a trail brochure and oriented us to the trail map. Her lovely shop offers Quilt Trail block patterns as well as fabric, machine quilting services and patterns. They designed the Variable Star block displayed on their building to celebrate the four seasons.
A short way down the road is the 100-year old Chamber of Commerce building whose quilt block is the logo used by the Oscoda County Art Council who are responsible for the creation of the Timberland Quilt Trail.
Nearby is Lydia’s Gate, a shelter for those in need. Their quilt block is located on an outbuilding of the neat white house that can accommodate 16 people.
Back on the main street of Mio we came to the Au Sable River Restaurant that displays the Fish Fry quilt block designed specifically for them to represent their Friday fish fry dinners.
The Au Sable Valley Market erected their Ohio Snowflake block, a traditional Amish pattern, on an outdoor fence. They sell locally made products, pampered beef & organic produce.
We had a great afternoon travelling one and two-lane roadways, some unpaved, through rolling country. I’ll continue with the last two quilt blocks we visited next time. They were both so unusual and in fascinating locations.