How to start a trail in your county

arkansas-map-by-county

We welcome new quilt trails across Arkansas and hope you will join our group! Read further to find out how.

Arkansas Quilt Trails is an initiative of Rural Community Alliance, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower rural communities to effect change by creating opportunities in education, economic development, and youth empowerment to improve quality of life and place. The Quilt Trail was begun as a way of preserving local history while beautifying our communities for residents and visitors alike. Rural Community Alliance is a member-based organization that has 64 chapters across Arkansas. Each chapter works on local initiatives to revitalize its community, support its public school, collaborate within its region, and support RCA’s statewide policy work.

Any county/community may add a trail to Arkansas Quilt Trails by forming a Rural Community Alliance chapter with at least 20 members. Lifetime dues are $10 and forms are found on our website.

All quilt blocks must be painted on a wood surface and patterns must be approved by our Quilt Trail Committee, by emailing Renee Carr at carr@thenewrural.org.  Once a community/county has twelve approved blocks installed, a signed owner agreement for each block, and a story submitted for each block, we will add the new trail to the Arkansas Quilt Trails website.

The Stone County Quilt Trail and the Searcy County Quilt Trail have launched and more blocks are in the works. Meanwhile, Quilt Trails are currently being developed in Newton, Van Buren, Cleburne, and Pike Counties. Stay tuned for more quilt trails across Arkansas!

13 Comments

  • Love the idea.Have seen these in other parts of the country. Is it possible to have a speaker at one of our quilt club meetings. We have a little more than 50 members .Also planning a spring quilt show in Heber Springs, which had almost 500 folks attending two years ago. A possible display there would also be another idea.

  • Would love to see a Quilt Trail developed in PikeCounty. In fact, my antique store which is housed in an old home built in the late 1800’s would be the perfect place for one of these beautiful quilts.

    • Thanks for your response, Vicki! Your historic building would be a tremendous location for a quilt block! All we need is a county coordinator to get a trail developed in Pike County. The quilt trail sponsor, Rural Community Alliance, has chapters in Delight and Kirby so there should be some folks who would help carry out the plan. Our guidelines require 12 quilt blocks be up before we promote the county trail. I’ll contact you soon!

  • We are looking into this for Perry County. Can you send me more information on the Arkansas Quilt Trails? I looking for info about what type of buildings these may be displayed on, the size requirements of the quilts, and any other information that would be helpful to a community wanting to become part of this. We are wanting to have an informational meeting here at our Library to see if there is enough interest in the community, but need more information.
    Thank you in advance for any help you can give.

    • Looking forward to visiting the folks in Perry County to talk about starting a trail there! The size of the block is up to you, but needs to be large enough to see. Some are 8×8 ft, 6×6 ft, and 4×4 ft. There are a few 2×2 ft. but those are hard to see unless you are standing right by them. The quilt blocks can be displayed on homes, barns, and commercial buildings.

  • We visited the Ozarks this past week and saw all the beautiful quilt squares on the buildings. Next time we visit (next year?) I want to make the quilt trail a purposeful outing. Please let me know when maps will be published to make finding the quilt squares easier? Also, a real quilt of all these squares would be GORGEOUS!!

    • Hello, Penny. Thanks for letting us know you enjoyed seeing some of the quilt blocks in the Ozarks. The trail is expanding across Arkansas, county by county, and beyond the Ozarks to southwestern Arkansas. Right now there are Arkansas Quilt Trail brochures at several of the Arkansas Welcome Centers. The brochure features the Stone and Searcy county trails with addresses for each location. The brochure will be updated this fall and will include several other counties that have reached the 12 block minimum. So you’ll have even more to look at when you return!

  • Hi Renee…my name is Annie Fournier from Stitch in Time in Diamond City AR Boone County. Understand Gayla Lynch is our coordinator. Having some difficulty in connecting on details. We do have 20 members in our guild. I understand blocks are to be made of wood(kind?) 8 x 8 to be visible, design approval and need 12 blocks. Can one guild supply 12 blocks? Very interested but need details

    • Hi, Annie. I’ll email you the quilt block instructions. We require a county to have 12 blocks before placing them on the ArkansasQuiltTrails website and map. The quilt blocks can be anywhere in the county. You should submit your patterns to county coordinator Gayla Lynch so she can get them approved. The quilt blocks can vary in size. We have 4x4s, 6x6s, and 8x8s on the trail so far.

  • These are beautiful! Are the squares true quilt squares or are they made of wood to represent quilt squares? I live in Faulkner County. Do we have any participation in this at this time?

    • Hi, Janice. Thanks for your inquiry. You are correct that the quilt trail blocks are quilt patterns painted onto wood. We have not yet had anyone volunteer to be the Faulkner County Coordinator. That is the first step toward creating a county trail that becomes part of Arkansas Quilt Trails. A big hurdle is getting the first block up so others can see what it’s all about. If you are interested in putting up a block, that will be of great benefit. Also if you or someone you know is interested in being the volunteer county coordinator, please email Renee at carr@thenewrural.org.

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