Raffle aims to keep the St. Stephen’s bells ringing

MIDDLEBURY — Doris Grimm was an artist especially talented in quilt making. She believed that quilts should be given and used and that the stitches were full of stories. 
Four special quilts from Grimm will be auctioned this coming Saturday as part of the “Keep the Bells Ringing” St. Stephen’s Live Auction.
The sale, which will include many more items to bid on, will be held from 3-6 p.m. on Saturday, April 27,  at the VFW building on Exchange Street in Middlebury. 
“Members and friends of St. Stephen’s have been collecting for over a year getting ready to host the Keep the Bells Ringing Auction,” Auction chair Tom Klemmer reports. “It will be a great opportunity for the community to find treasures and to help fund needed repairs to the historic church on the green!”
Quilter Grimm loved the camaraderie of the quilting circle and enjoyed meeting people from all walks of life with a passion to create beautiful art with fabric.  She started over 40 years ago getting together with friends and meeting new ones.  She was a stickler about her fabric points and pin positions and would spend hours in her studio laying out colors, fabrics, and positions.  She loved her journeys to catch up with friends at quilt conventions and searches for perfect fabrics and combinations.  She loved challenges, new designs and giving her quilts to others.  Plain and simple, she loved to make and give quilts. 
Doris lost her battle with cancer last year.  When she knew she wouldn’t finish her last quilts she donated them to “Stitched Together,” the sewing circle at St. Stephen’s that she helped found. She was greatly loved as a quilting mentor and dear friend; she was part of the binding that held the group together.  When her health began to decline, meetings moved to her house, where she loved sharing her projects as well as photos and stories of her lifetime of quilting accomplishments.  She actively participated in many of the decisions about how to finish these four quilts and enjoyed seeing the work progress. 
All four quilts will be featured in the April 27 auction to benefit the Historic Building Fund of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church.
Alongside the quilts will be fine antiques, art, handmade furniture, local artisan crafts, a week in lovely house on the coast of Maine, a Lake Champlain boat ride and a host of other fun and exciting items, including a great used 2008 Mazda Sedan.
Barbara Blodgett, auction committee member, says, “I am particularly excited about the Amy Oxford hooked rug depicting the Middlebury landscape scene from the St. Stephen’s altar window.”
Tom Broughton will be the auctioneer, the VFW Auxiliary will be offering refreshments and there will be trucks available to deliver large items within a reasonable distance.
The preview of items begins at 3 p.m. and Broughton will begin the live auction at 4 p.m.  More information is online at ststephensmidd.org.

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