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Christina Bourgeouis and Jacquie Brophy display their handiwork, which they will donate to the Susquehanna SPCA next month. (Photo by Caspar Ewig)

Heartworks: Where a Dog in Need Gets a Quilt, Indeed

By CASPAR EWIG
FLY CREEK

When Margaret (Bunny) Wolff read that the Susquehanna Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was assuming custody of pets taken from a recent seizure and that their shelter was full, she rightfully assumed that the animal shelter would be in sore need of blankets for the newcomers. As owner and operator of Heartworks Quilts and Fabrics in Fly Creek, she was in an excellent position to do something to fulfill that need.

“Over the years,” Wolff said, “Heartworks has amassed a core of dedicated quilters who I knew would love to volunteer for such a task.”

And so the store, as well as several of its quilting customers, donated the fabric and Bunny created some representative patterns before putting out a call for volunteers to quilt blankets of various sizes, to be donated to the SQSCPA for cats and dogs in their care.

She was not disappointed.

On Saturday, January 13, Jeannine Bonhoff, Betty Giffin, Pam Deane, Tigi Armour, Christina Bourgeois, Jacquie Brophy, and Rick Syke—the rooster in the henhouse—met and inaugurated the first day of the animal shelter quilt-in.

“After my retirement, I joined the quilting group and enjoy making something that helps the community,” said Brophy, “and since I have two rescue dogs, helping the SQSPA was a natural.”

Heartworks is not new to sponsoring this sort of undertaking. In the past, its fabric and quilting volunteers have created blankets for use by local deputy sheriffs, EMT departments and rescue squads of local fire districts to comfort children that were placed in their care. Boston’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute was given four large quilts which are now displayed at the reception area to represent each season of the year.

“And we made 1,900 masks for use by Bassett Hospital during the COVID pandemic,” Bonhoff, a long-time resident of Fly Creek, pointed out.

The project will continue throughout January. Quilters will meet again Friday and Saturday, January 19 and 20, and will wrap up the endeavor on Saturday, January 27.

“Any quilters or other needle workers who wish to join us on those other dates are more than welcome,” Wolff pointed out, emphasized that quilting can be just as much a man’s pastime, and that Rick could use some company.

The quilters expect to complete between 50-100 quilts, and presentation at the SQSPCA is planned for some time in February.

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