Millie Volkman is no ordinary old dame. At 95, the retired librarian still can spin a yarn and crank out one-of-a-kind quilts.
"Millie is a most delightful and entertaining lady," said fellow quilter Elaine Gammell. "She is known for her storybook quilts."
Volkman is one of the featured quilters at the Tri-City Quilters Guild's annual show March 18-19 at the Three Rivers Convention Center in Kennewick.
Her love of quilting grew from her love of teaching and books.
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Volkman has always had a fondness for children. She raised five kids of her own, and when the youngest started school, so did she.
"I got my teaching degree first, then master's in librarianship," Volkman said. "I worked at Marcus Whitman (elementary) for 22 years and loved it."
"The kids and their innocence made the days fly by," she said.
But she missed kids after she retired and would visit the schools, churches and other places to read to them.
"I remembered the wonderful books for kids that had quilts in them."
And that is what opened the road to making quilts so enjoyable.
"I started in quilts after retirement and few years of golf," Volkman said. "I needed something for my two hands to do. ... I also found out I had a small streak of talent and won a few awards for my quilts."
And though she's created hundreds of quilts over the years, she usually gives them away.
"One of the real rewards of quilting is the women you meet who also quilt," she said.
"Their generous hearts are movers, and every month at our quilt meeting they come with armloads of quilts for Hospice and Habitat (for Humanity.)"
Volkman's other creation is her "dammit dolls," which are on display at the White Bluffs Quilt Museum, 4034 W. Van Giesen St., No. D, in West Richland.
"The dammit dolls are fun, fun and more," she said. "They sell for $5 and have a message around their necks that says if you are pushed and pushed and can't kill anyone, take this doll and pound her on a tabletop and yell, dammit, dammit."
You'll feel so much better afterward, she adds, because you released all the anger.
The quilt show -- titled Sew Many Scraps. Sew a Patchwork Quilt -- also features the quilts of nationally known quilter Jackie Robinson of Montana, as well as Pasco quilter Darlene Smith.
Show hours are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. March 18 and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 19. Admission is $5 at the door. Parking is free.
*Dori O'Neal: 582-1514; firstname.lastname@example.org