by Carrie C. Causey
BUNN — After years of work, Franklin County Arts Council (FCAC) will soon dedicate the Quilt Trails of the Tar River.
The event will take place Saturday, June 29, at the Bunn Depot, 121 S. Franklin St., from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. An official ribbon cutting will be held at 11 a.m.
Activities planned throughout the day include a quilting bee, a corn-hole tournament, sack races, a tug-of-war and other games, music, food, and arts and crafts vendors. Bluegrass musicians are invited to bring their instruments and join in a bluegrass jam.
The Quilt Trail of the Tar River, organized by the Franklin County Arts Council, is an effort inspired by Theresa Brown and Steve Filarsky to highlight various places in the county and draw tourists. The “quilt blocks” are painted wooden squares depicting patterns commonly used in quilts to represent things.
Quilt blocks have already been planned for the Franklin County Arts Building on Justice Street, the Bank Building in Franklinton, a town Centerville, the Porch Building in Louisburg, the Dr. Samuel Perry House called Oakley on Laurel Mill Road, Vollmer Farm in Bunn, the Women’s Club church on Franklin Street in Youngsville and the Run of the Mill Bed and Breakfast in Henderson.
Charles and Debbie Powell, who own Miss Lou’s Quilting Studio in Henderson, led the team to make the trail happen, encompassing Franklin County and the surrounding area of the Tar River. The quilt trail team members are Linda Carlisle, Sharon Billings, Rachel Monteverdi, Kim Young, Pat Noles, Charles, Debbie, Margaret Hilpert and Amy Massaro.
“To be the first established trail beyond the mountain region says a lot for all the hard work that has gone into the trail to get it started,” Charles Powell said in a press release. “People of this region can be proud to be a part of something as highly successful as a quilt trail. It will bring in tourists from all over the country.”
Charles Powell hopes the quilt trail will continue to grow throughout the area to share the history of the region.
“I hope other art councils will see our project and look to us as the ‘go to’ arts council for guidance,” he added. “I would like for the Quilt Trails of the Tar River to be a signature project for Franklin County Arts Council and our community.”
Award-winning artist Kim Young of Knightdale, who has completed several Franklin County murals, volunteered her time and talents to paint the blocks after Charles Powell cut the wood and laid out the patterns. Arts Council members Margaret Hilpert and Rhonda Simpson also helped in the painting.
Team members also primed the blocks and sealed them.
They were then installed throughout the county with the use of Wake Electric’s cherry picker.
“I am just so thrilled and privileged to have been a part of seeing our Quilt Trails of the Tar River become a reality,” Margaret Hilpert, chairperson of the FCAC board of directors and a member of the Quilt Team wrote in a press release. “It has been fun and rewarding to see the blocks being made, painted, sealed and put into place, and we are so grateful to all the people who had the faith to go into this venture with the FCAC and to share their stories with followers of the trail.”
For more information about vendor space and other activities contact FCAC at 919-497-6910 or e-mail ED@FCACarts.org.