Memory Quilt Tells Stories of Gulfport

The Gulfport Memory Quilt came about through a true team effort, with community members photographing the city, transferring the photos to fabric, and then sewing them together and adding custom embroidery. The quilt will be awarded to a raffle ticket winner in October as a fundraiser for the Gulfport Senior Center, and will be on display at various locations around the city until then. Photo courtesy of Jerryanne Hindman.

A memory quilt sponsored by the Gulfport Senior Center started its travels around Gulfport last week. The quilt was displayed at the American Legion Post 125, traveled to Gulfport Art Walk Saturday, June 16, and outside of Stella’s. The quilt will also spend some time at both the Senior Center and Beach Bazaar, with specific times and dates yet to be announced. 

The idea for the quilt came from Valerie Schmidt, a friend of Jerryanne Hindman. Hindman works at the Senior Center and was trying to think of creative ways to fundraise for the year. Schmidt had created a memory quilt in Pittsburgh for a fundraiser and the concept saw great success there. When Hindman heard about this, she decided it would be an equally good opportunity. The idea took off from there. 

Schmidt, Hindman and local photographer Phil Penrose zipped around (and above) the city to grab snapshots of places that highlight Gulfport and its vibrant community. Penrose used a drone to capture the city by air, while Schmidt and Hindman visited parks and storefronts for a street view of the town. Hindman says the team effort of the quilt was her favorite part. 

“The way it all fell into place,” she said, “that was the biggest thing that sticks out to me.” 

Places like Clymer Park, Veterans Park and the Gulfport Public Library star in a few of the quilt’s handcrafted squares. 

“We’re celebrating the arts, the restaurants, and the services available in Gulfport,” said Hindman. 

After capturing all of the images, the trio turned next to Jeffy’s Tees. Jeff Moore, owner of Jeffy’s, did all of the picture transfers onto the quilt squares. He only charged the Senior Center for the price of the supplies. 

“It took quite a long time to do all the transfers and used a lot of ink,” he said. 

Next, the quilt needed to be assembled. Hindman reached out to the Gulfport Quilters and asked if they’d like to be a part of the project. The answer was yes. With the quilters’ creative minds and dedicated hands, the photos went from moments in time to a timeless piece in about three months. 

Pauline Murphy is one of those quilters. Working with a team of five or six, she said the Gulfport Quilters put in about 18 hours to complete the project over several months. 

Murphy said, “We did it in spurts, so it’s really difficult to say exactly how long though.” 

The remaining time on the quilt was dedicated to delicate embroidery highlighting Gulfport’s animal and marine life.

Ann Hartwig of StarGazer Quilting in Gulfport was the artist behind the embroidering. 

“If you look at it she has dolphins, fish, geckos – a little bit of everything,” said Murphy, talking about Hartwig’s embroidery. “She did a beautiful, beautiful job on it.” 

Hindman wants the people who view the quilt to connect their memories with the locations featured on the piece. 

“I want the quilt to bring back memories of wonderful times they’ve had in Gulfport,” Hindman said. “Just think about wonderful experiences they have had.”

Raffle tickets for the quilt will be sold for $5 and can be purchased at Senior Center, the American Legion Post 125, Beach Bazaar and all Art Walks. The fundraiser will run throughout October ending with a drawing at Monster Mash V on Saturday, October 27. Ticket holders do not need to be present to win. All proceeds from the fundraiser will benefit the Gulfport Senior Center Foundation. 

For more information, contact Jerryanne Hindman at 727-893-1244 between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m., Monday through Friday.

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