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The show also is a major fundraiser for the Friends of the Milwaukie Center, an organization that supports all of the center's social services programs and provides scholarships for classes through the North Clackamas Parks & Recreation District

The 23rd annual Airing of the Quilts on March 17 and 18 at the Milwaukie Center is more than just a quilt show.

"It's an art show that focuses on a community of quilters. Quilts are an expression of personality and love," said Shirley Workman, the chairman of the quilt show committee.

PHOTO BY ELLEN SPITALERI - Shirley Workman, chairman of the quilt show committee, points out the intricate quilting on 'Startacular,' the raffle quilt for this years quilt show, on March 17 and 18 at the Milwaukie Center.The show also is a major fundraiser for the Friends of the Milwaukie Center, an organization that supports all of the center's social services programs and provides scholarships for classes through the North Clackamas Parks & Recreation District.

Between 120 and 130 quilts will be on display, including traditional quilts, perhaps made by a grandmother or great-grandmother, and art quilts, some made by nationally known quilters, Workman said.

This year's raffle quilt, "Startacular," was designed by the eight members of the quilt show committee.

The quilt depicts "a feathered star, which is a modern take on a classic design," Workman said. "The committee pieced it together over a three-month period and Kayleen Davis, of Doshie Creek Quilting, quilted it for us."

Raffle tickets are $1 each or six for $5 and the raffle winner will be announced Saturday.

New to the show this year is Quilts of Valor, a group of quilters who "want to wrap any service person in a warm quilt," Workman said.

"This will be a workday for them. People can watch them quilt and can submit names of veterans to be honored," she said.

Marje Rhine, a teacher in the area who has been featured in national magazines, is this year's speaker at the show. She will present "Taming Your Scraps" at 11 a.m. Saturday.

Another popular event at the show is the bazaar, taking place all day both Friday and Saturday.

"People have donated fabrics, sewing things and yarn and they fill the pool room. A lot of quilters make charity quilts, and we have fabric for $3.50 a yard; it goes for half price on Saturday," Workman said.

Attendees will receive a program filled with stories submitted to accompany the quilts.

"The stories relate the personal history of the quilts," Workman said.

Several quilts from past shows stand out in Workman's memory. One reflected the quilt maker's life in 10-year segments, while another was made while the quilter's husband was undergoing chemotherapy.

Workman added, "Quilting is comforting in a lot of different ways."

See the quilts

What: 23rd annual Airing of the Quilts

When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 17 and 18

Where: The Milwaukie Center, 5440 S.E. Kellogg Creek Drive

Cost: $5 at the door.

Raffle: "Startacular," the raffle quilt, will be on display in the entry hall; tickets are $1 each or six for $5. The drawing will be held Saturday.

Lecture: Nationally known quilter Marje Rhine will present "Taming Your Scraps" at 11 a.m. March 18.

More: Pete's Cafe will be open for breakfast and lunch both days. Visit milwaukiecenter.com or call 503-653-8100.

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