On the third Thursday of each month, the Colusa Masonic Lodge is filled with friends connected by a single stitch.
Over the past year, the 25 members of the Pacific Flyway Quilters have been busy making pet beds, teddy bears, quilts of various sizes, and drawstring bags, all in the name of community service.
A representative from the Williams Police Department, the California Highway Patrol, the Colusa County VFW, Colusa County Health and Human Services, as well as Valley West Care Center and the Colusa County Animal Control office accepted the numerous of projects made just for them.
“I appreciate all of the efforts everyone put into the projects and helping out,” said Emma Thompson to the guild members. “Tonight we are here to share with our community what we have accomplished throughout the year.”
Many of the community service projects are created from a variety of materials, some donated and some purchased.
“Most of the community sewing is done with donated fabric,” said Thompson. “We get all kinds of material. Sometimes it is big stiff, heavy pieces of canvas, small pieces, as well as unfinished quilt blocks. We collect these pieces and try to figure out what to do with them.”
Over 20 mini quilts were made and presented to the Colusa County Health and Human Services to distribute to families and children in need.
“In the past, we’ve donated our children quilts to the hospital, so I had to find another source, and we decided to go with the Health and Human Services,” said Thompson.
In addition to the quilts, about 35 drawstring bags were donated to Health and Human Services for the foster care program.
“The intentions for these are for the foster children to have something to put their items in,” said Thompson.
The Williams Police Department, Colusa Police Department, and the California Highway Patrol each received ‘Care Kits’ with bears and blankets to be given to children in distress.
“I applied for a grant through the Community Advocates for Parents and Children (CAPC), and we’ve used that money to make the quilts for the kids,” said Thompson.
The Colusa County Sheriff’s Office Animal Control was presented with an abundance of pet beds. Each were made with care for the animals at the shelter.
“This is where we use a lot of the heavy duty fabrics or fabrics that may have been stained or discolored,” said Thompson.
The dog beds are also stuffed with quilting scraps. “They are a true by-product of quilting,” said Thompson.
In addition to the dog beds, rice bags were donated to the guild to create shade sheets for the animals.
“We appreciate all that you have done,” said Colusa County Animal Control Officer, Pam DaGrossa. ”The pet beds are wonderful! We don’t use them so much in the shelter unless we have a special needs animal, like an injured animal or maybe an older arthritic animal. For our foster animals, they are great. We can let the foster animals use them so when they transfer to a new home they can take their bed with them. It’s something familiar and comforting to them.”
The Pacific Flyway Quilt Guild hosts their monthly meetings on the third Wednesday of every month at 7:00 PM located in the Colusa Masonic Hall, 311 5th St. in Colusa. ■