61. Skinner - Ithaca
The Mariner's Star was chosen for all the colors that enhance the various points. The complexity of this quilt block represents the many aspects of a farming family's life.
The blue and yellow stands for the Ithaca Community in which the Skinner family has stayed to raise their children. The green represents the growing agriculture in Gratiot County.
No matter which way you come to Skinner farm, you are always welcomed with a friendly smile. The homestead was started in 1876, and the Skinners are the third owners. Dave and Tamey moved to the homestead on September 20, 1980. They raised two children, Benjamin and Amber. Dave's parents live just down the road on the farm they established in 1957. Farming has been a big part of the Skinner family for four generations in Gratiot County. Brent Skinner, David and Tamey’s nephew, now farms the land at both farms.
62. Brooklyn and Adam Baltimore - Ithaca
The Lilies of the Field block is chosen to represent Mathree 6:28 and Luke 12:27.
63. Newark Township Hall - Ithaca
The Friendship Block represents Newark Township, founded in 1855, with many historical family farms and some prime agricultural soil.
64. Chaffin - Ithaca
This Cove Ring quilt design is a replica of a hand-sewn quilt created by Sue Chaffin's great-grandmother, Edna Crakes of Kent County, Michigan in the late 1800s. It was handed down to Sue's grandmother (Mary Bernice Krum) and mother (Bea Krum) before it was passed down to Sue. The colors are identical to Sue's great-grandmother's quilt, which is now on display at Sue's home. This quilt square reproduction was hung by two children (Mike and Julie) at the end of August after it was completed on August 17th, 2015.
65. Gratiot County Historical Society - Ithaca
The Gratiot Historical Museum’s barn quilt block consists of four smaller log cabin blocks assembled with the light sides to the center forming a cross. It includes a red border around the four combined blocks. The block was hung June 28, 2015.
The log cabin block is one of the oldest quilt patterns and became identified with the pioneer spirit and values of America. During the Civil War of the 1860s, a log cabin quilt with a black center hanging on a clothesline signaled a stop for the Underground Railroad.
The colors on the museum barn quilt were chosen to represent Gratiot County and the state of Michigan: brown for its fertile soil, green for its forests and fields, dark blue for its lakes and streams, light blue for the sky, white for the clouds, and brick red for the hearth of the home.
66. Greater Gratiot Development, Inc. - Ithaca
This square represents the main economic sectors in Gratiot County that are supported by GGDI: manufacturing, agriculture, wind energy, and recreation.
67. Downtown Bakery - Ithaca
Downtown Bakery in Ithaca was opened in 1983 by the Jim & Shirley Whitman family. They utilized some family cookie recipes and added a variety of breads, rolls, and cake donuts to the menu. Shirley decorated special occasion cakes. Rick Koppleberger was hired in 1984 to help with the baking and frying. He learned the trade from Jim and went on to purchase the business when Shirley retired in 1994. Rick has continued the baking tradition of the Whitmans, producing popular favorites of healthy bread, English muffin bread, butter flake rolls, cream & custard long johns, chocolate frosted cinnamon rolls, and frosted sugar cookies. Pamela continues to decorate special occasion cakes.
However, Downtown Bakery wasn't the first bakery business in Ithaca, Michigan. McWilliams Bakery operated out of the current location sometime in the sixties and seventies, per many local residents, who have shared memories of visiting the bakery during their school lunch period for the sweet delicacies the bakery produced. An antique weather thermometer with calendar given to the owners reveals that Williams Bakery operated in Ithaca in the 1940s. Historical copies of the Northwestern Miller, a trade magazine from Minnesota, list in the General Trade Notes of Michigan of July 27, 1921 that, "Peabody & Son have bought the Central bakery, Ithaca, from William Hubbard." Later, the February 22, 1922 edition notes stated that, "C.A. Peabody & Son, bakers, Ithaca, have sold to G.D. Christonnell & Co." These suggest that another bakery operated in Ithaca. Downtown Bakery continues the rich history of serving the community home baked goods.
Pamela is an avid quilter and chose the quilt block patterns as a reflection of her personal quilting history. Sunbonnet Sue is a favorite pattern and has become her online avatar. One of her earliest quilts was a sampler of various Sunbonnet patterns. Quilting wasn't passed down through the family and she doesn't have quilts that her Grandmother made. Rather, Pamela introduced both of her sisters to quilting. The three sisters have been sewists since 4-H days and bond regularly over quilting and sewing activities. Pamela originally stitched a small Sister's Choice quilt for a guild quilt challenge, and then gifted it to her oldest sister. It is a fitting block to represent the family quilting connection.
The colors of autumn are represented on both blocks. Fall is a favorite season and the warm yellows, oranges, and reds bring thoughts of crisp weather, bonfires, and cider with donuts. Rick and Pamela are alumni of Ithaca High school and Sunbonnet Sue is painted the school colors of blue and gold and surrounded by two Yellow Jackets.
70. Hornak - Ithaca
Many quilts give clues to their owner’s personality, and so does the Hornak Family Block. The cross conveys their love of God. The flag reflects their love for their country and its ideals. The five hearts represent the Hornak Family: Mr. and Mrs. Hornak and their three daughters. The Yellow Jacket represents the Ithaca High School mascot, where the couple worked for many years, and the Ithaca Community. Designing the quilt square forced the family to discuss who they were artistically, and they are very proud of the end result and the factors it represents.