Grow Benzie Community Center closer upThe Fiber Lovers Valentine’s Day Tea had a great turnout!  The Community Center building at Grow Benzie hosted our event and we exchanged ideas, socialized, ate, drank and shared the fiber love. The group consisted of a mix of fiber artists that enjoy mediums of quilting, sewing, knitting, crocheting, weaving, felting, tatting, rug hooking and repurposing textiles.  Many of the ladies enjoy more than one type of craft and are in several groups that meet in the Benzie, Frankfort and Manistee areas.  We all bring different talents and ideas to the table.

Tea, sandwiches and snacks were served and enjoyed by all.  Thank you to all the ladies who made such scrumptious treats for us to enjoy.  We had time to socialize and see familiar faces and talk fiber.  As a group, we spent time discussing ideas and possibilities for what we envisioned in our fiber community.

Valentines Day Tea Party 2016Some of the ideas that were presented during the tea were:

1. Host a Fiber Festival
2. OWL (Others Want to Learn) Mentoring Program
3. Outreach to school for youth programs to include girls and boys
4. Adult classes
5. Partner with Grow Benzie to provide community location for fiber groups
6. Feature demonstrations during Farmer’s Markets

Grow Benzie is located on the left on Frankfort Highway when heading towards Frankfort on 115, just past Crystal Lake Clinic (as you crest the hill).  Everyone thought that it was a great venue for our tea.  Here’s a link to Google maps if you need it.

I love spinningThe Benzie Area Spinners meet at Grow Benzie (in the house) every third Monday of each month from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM.  The house includes a living room where we spin, knit or work on whatever handwork we have for the day.  Many in the group are also weavers so we enjoy Show and Tell of all types of finished projects created with fibers.

knitting with red yarnEvery Wednesday from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM the group known as Knit2gether now meets at Grow Benzie, in the house, around the kitchen table.  The knitting group has a lot of talented ladies, including Michele who used to own the Yarn Market in Beulah. We all bring our projects to work on and if you’re smart you’ll bring more than one….just in case your yarn has to many breaks in it to finish the socks you were working on….ask me how I know.  You don’t have to limit yourself to knitting, crocheting is welcomed too.

Grow Benzie aerial viewGrow Benzie has a Community Center and a certified kitchen that can be rented as an incubator kitchen for homemade food businesses.  The Community Center is where we held our tea.  The grounds also include what was once a single family home.  This is where the spinning and knitting groups meet, it is also were the office is located.  Three greenhouses are also part of the Grow Benzie complex as are open area community gardens that can be rented by groups for summer.  If you have any questions about the facilities at Grow Benzie, please contact the Executive Director, Josh Stolz to learn more.  You can find out more at the Grow Benzie website.

The Valentine’s Day Tea was the first social gathering of different fiber related groups that I am a part of or knew about at the time.  I invited members from the Manistee Victoria Quilters, Bear Lake Quilting group, Frankfort Quilting group, Benzie Area Spinners and Knit2gether.  I apologize to other fiber groups that I missed inviting to this initial tea. I did not mean to exclude any group or individuals, it was purely an oversight on my part.  Everyone is definitely welcome for our future events, so share this with your friends and family.

textile art

Join us on Facebook

Join us on our new Facebook group called the NW Michigan Fiber Community, open to the public.  Great place to share your finished projects, group events, or get inspired.

Our next social gathering will be in May 2016 when all the snowbirds are back.  I’m excited to offer an opportunity for all the fiber lovers to come together and hangout, swap stories or stash, laughter and love at least 4 times a year. How often do you see that many fiberholics in one place?

pink polka dot sewing machine

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