Rural roundup – a quilting Odyssey.

This is how we do it in the Country.

20 months ago an email arrived in the ‘inbox’ with an invitation to give a presentation at our Rural roundup in Peterborough. It’s the opportunity for Quilters all over the State in country South Australia to come together in the spirit of quilting and textile art.

There was a little confusion (on my part) with the dates at that time and finally I was able to accept.  It’s a fact of life that at my semi advanced age, there are often a few curve balls thrown in my direction in the form of schedule hiccups.

As I write this, the event is now over and the following blog is my image flow of the spirit that invaded the small town of Peterborough in what we call, the mid north of our state.

Women in cars, buses and carriages of all kinds descended on the town on Friday but they didn’t come empty handed. Quilts for show and tell, coolers full of cheeses and wine and other dietary ‘necessities’ and the stories unwound as the conversation flowed.

I took an early morning walk yesterday just before the sun came up. The opportunity to explore was overwhelming and I loved the silence of the morning and time to just plain stop and see. Pink skies, magical light and the buildings in the town put on a quiet and often hidden light show that occurs every sunny morning for just a short time. It was also what I call a magpie morning with the waking birds beginning they daily chorus.

magpie kind of morning.

The town is old by our short history standards and  was once a thriving railroad hub to the major cities, North and South, East and West. The majesty and might of  the steam trains that connected a nation is remember here with a museum of natural stone buildings and the harbouring of the dozens of steam trains that were a once familiar sight on the landscape.

Now the rail lines carry fast, clean but less romantic trains that traverse the country.



The images following are the things I saw as I walked early in the morning.

That means… get of ya bike.
bright red tree trunks.



I walked through town and came upon the town hall where our event was to be held. It was barely 7.00 am and preparations were well underway. The temperature was rising and you could feel the anticipation of the heat that was going to influence the day.


The rain from the evening before









Preparations were well underway and the catering for 300 had begun very early.


The event was sold out months before and this was just one list of the 37 groups attending from around the state.





A few hours later it was time for the event to begin and the ladies flocked to the venue. Each person received a goodie bag and I love this photo of each person exploring the contents.



Checking the schedule.
A sumptuous morning tea was served first
Cakes, tea and coffee for 300+
Let it begin.

I was the first speaker. At least it was a little cooler than later in the day when the hand fans were working overtime and it looked as if a sea of butterflies had landed on the audience.


Two speakers down, a short break and then it was lunch time. These gorgeous people from the Lions club performed a miracle and served roast lamb and chicken and all the vegies. It was delicious.


Pure country hospitality.



P1120875The afternoon continued with more talks, show and tell of course and the compulsory shopping.  Thanks everyone for the wonderful book sales.

Miss Roz and Margaret.



We tutors Lorraine Cocker, Julie  Haddrick and Michelle Hill were presented with wonderful local goodie bags of honey, nuts, cookies, jam and all manner of gorgeousness.

Julie with one of her wonderful Quilts.

We are all local tutors who began through our Guild and traveled different routes in our careers.

The day ended with even more food and then retirement for champagne and nibbles on the patio for some.


This lady went back to the hotel with a smile on her face, thank you so much to the Peterborough Guild…… wait for it folks numbering just 6 members.


4 Comments Add yours

  1. Roma Bennetts says:

    What a wonderful event for Peterborough. Thanks Pam for high lighting our wonderful people and town that make up a part of South Australia. Peterborough people, WOW.

  2. A great story, Pam. I felt I was right there – in the audience, walking the early morning township, at the coffee table ….. Thank you.

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Thank you for show Peterborourgh I went through there about 30 years ago it was quite cute then and still looks cute today. I love the quilts show, amazing what woman can do.

  4. Lea Hooper says:

    Thanks Pam for making the trek to Peterborough. As an ex-Peterborough patch worker I received a phonecall from my fellow PP Judy Evans asking whether I would like to attend. I had no idea who was speaking, what the format was or how many people attended these events. She asked if I could help out due to their small numbers and I accepted immediately.
    In the end I didn’t help but healed. Since leaving Peterborough 11 years ago my passion for my creative time diminished with a new stressful job, new community and a failed marriage. Depression set in and I have not felt my old self for many years.
    It was a very nostalgic and emotional day for me. Seeing women so proud of their projects, revisiting our Federation quilt which is dear to my heart and hearing all the speakers stories was definitely the nudge I need to take steps to the old me.
    I connected with you particularly as I love my photography and texture. I also love your energy and am inspired to have a go myself.
    Thank you also for your beautiful description of Peterborough through your words and images. It is a rich town in so many ways and was a significant part of my family’s life during 1993-2005. It still makes me proud and I love it when others see beauty in it to.
    Thank you and many blessings to you
    Lea Hooper

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