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An Awe-Inspiring Trip At Every Turn, Part One

I checked one destination off of my vacation bucket list a few weeks ago when we went to Paducah, Kentucky. If you have never heard of Paducah, then you are probably wondering why anyone would put that city on a bucket list. But if you are a quilter, then you know that it is a quilting mecca -- home to The National Quilt Museum and AQS Quilt Week in the spring and now also in the fall.

Tom and I have not taken a week-long vacation since our honeymoon 33 years ago, so we planned this trip to make the most of our time by including a few other stops along the way. Our first destination was a Kansas City Royals vs. Chicago White Sox baseball game on September 11th. They had a very emotional pre-game program honoring those serving in the military -- past, present, and future. The only downside was that the Royals lost the game.

The next morning we headed to Paducah with a couple of quick stops along the way. The first was along I-70 near Boonville, MO where we discovered the Missouri Country Quilt shop. The owner was very friendly and chatty and she had the cutest little dog that had a bed right by the sewing machines. He seemed to be in heaven right along with the quilters! I bought some fat quarters for our Quilt of Valor group and a cute Row By Row kit that featured cars that resembled Volkswagen Beetles. Down the road about ½ a mile from the shop is the farm where they raise the Clydesdale horses for Anheuser-Busch. We were able to see several horses in the pasture and would love to schedule a tour of the facility.

We stopped for lunch in St. Charles, MO -- an historic town on the north side of St. Louis that is known as the final embarkation point for the Lewis and Clark Expedition. We had been there several times before when we were traveling to Louisville, KY for the National FFA Convention. There is a charming quilt shop in an old house called the Quilted Cottage. They had fun Halloween fabric and wool kits. I almost bought a wool pumpkin candle mat, but ultimately decided that I didn’t really need any more projects.

We finally arrived in Paducah around 5:00 in the afternoon. We were fortunate to be able to stay with the mother of a college friend of mine. She was a great hostess and truly seemed to enjoy our visit. She took us out to eat at a local restaurant that evening called Flamingo Row. I had a club Fillymingo sandwich -- a hot sweet bread which surrounded ham, turkey, bacon, and cheese. Tom had a Hot Brown -- a Kentucky original -- a open-faced sandwich with bacon, ham, and turkey covered with a cheese sauce. We really enjoyed all of the new taste treats that we experienced on this trip!!

On Wednesday morning AQS Quilt Week began and I attended a class with Judi Madsen which covered the quilting designs that could be used in a sampler quilt. She showed us how she would quilt blocks like a four-patch, pinwheel, nine-patch, and churn dash. It was a hands-on class where we were able to go to a longarm machine and try out what she was teaching us. In the end I felt like there wasn’t a great deal of content, but I did learn some new things that I will be able to use. In addition, because we had to share a machine with a partner, there was a lot of standing around.

Check into the blog in two weeks to read about my further education at Quilt Week in Paducah and our adventures in Memphis, Tennessee so that you can plan your next trip to these awesome destinations!!

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