The Ailsa Craig Community Quilt Festival is unlike any other in the world. Historically, this week long event is a living testimony to the spirit of this small SW Ontario village as it is completely run by local volunteers. In 2011 we presented the incredible "Quilts of the Netherlands" followed in 2012 by the "Quilts of Denmark". 2013 saw the Festival host "Quilts of Israel", followed by "Quilts of Great Britain" (2014), "Quilts of France" (2015) and "Quilts of Latvia" (2016).

Last year, The Festival was proud to celebrate Canada's sesquicentennial by hosting; "Canada 150; A Celebration of Art Through Fibre". Bigger and brighter than ever, the show covered three venues including the Ailsa Craig Recreation Centre, Ye Olde Town Hall, Ailsa Craig and the inaugural opening of the historic Carnegie Library in Parkhill. A stunning combination of SAQA Quilts, Gerald Fagan Quilt treasures and historically significant heritage quilts and textiles from the surrounding area will be on display.

In 2018 we invite you to join us for Quilts of Iceland; Land of Ice and Lights. This fascinating country is noted for its artistic expression, democratic viewpoints, breath taking scenery and rich culture. We look forward to seeing how this is expressed in the Quilts of Iceland.  Please join us for a light lunch or refreshment at the Quilter's Cafe housed in the Recreation Centre and to shop the stunning wares our vendors will display. Pop over to the Ailsa Craig Arts Centre; a living legacy from the ACQFAF to see a display from local photographers who have travelled to Iceland. Be captivated by the Huldufolk houses you will find around town as we extend our hospitality to the Hidden Folk of Iceland. Register for classes in February and chat with the Icelandic Quilters, spinners and weavers who have travelled to join us and to share their techniques. On May 26th, don’t be alarmed to learn  “The Vikings Are Coming!”. The Festival has invited the Wulfthorpe Viking Re-Enactment troupe to set up a living history display next to the Ailsa Craig Recreation Centre. Admittance is free with paid admission to the Quilt Festival.

It's not for personal gain.
It's just for the love of fellow man.
It's that reward down in your heart.
It's that feeling that you've been part
Of helping others far and near
That makes you a volunteer.

(Author Unknown) 

Jan Bender

Jan has lived in the village of Ailsa Craig since the early 1970's. She and her husband John owned and operated Benders Foodland in Parkhill until retiring in June 2015. Being involved and supporting the community has always been important to both Jan and her husband. Jan, as well as John, has been involved with the Quilt Festival since it was organized as a volunteer event. Jan continues to be involved as Food Committee Chair. Although not a quilter, Jan remembers watching her grandmother piece many quilts. She is now the owner of several of her pieces and appreciates the skill and creativity that her grandmother had. Jan's creativity is expressed through her love of gardening, entertaining and her eye for detail. Jan is honoured to be on the board and grateful for all the volunteers who help make this fine caliber festival a success.

Gerry Barbe Gerry moved to Ailsa Craig with his wife Marilyn more than 30 years ago in search of the less hectic country life.
He is still looking. Presently the treasurer of the Ailsa Craig Community Quilt Festival, Gerry also serves on the board of Friends of Ye Olde Towne Hall and president of the local Lion's Club. Gerry is presently semi-retired working part time at Western University in London. For more than 20 years Marilyn and Gerry have run Ailsa Craig Village Pottery, a pottery studio and unique gift shop in Ailsa Craig.

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