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Thread: Disappointed in the Lancaster AQS show

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    Super Member Sunnie's Avatar
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    Disappointed in the Lancaster AQS show

    Maybe it is just me, but this is the second year that I attended the AQS show in Lancaster that I walked away feeling let down. Three years ago I was so thrilled with the show, but since then it has seemed depressing. I did go to the Lancaster Spring Quilt Show which was strictly vendors many of whom were at the AQS show in past years. I actually left the AQS show and went back to the Lancaster Spring Quilt Show to purchase several items. Anyone else feeling let down.
    Sunnie
    a dog show & quilt addict
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  2. #2
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    I wasn't at the Lancaster show, but the AQS shows seem to becoming a let down to many including the vendors. The AQS show in Knoxville, TN is not more. Last year was the last AQS show there. We went to it the year before and last year and I was more impressed the year before.

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    Super Member carrieg's Avatar
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    Can you pinpoint what it was that made you feel letdown? Was it the type of quilts, the colors, patterns, vendors?

    There will be an AQS show in Michigan in August(?) and I plan on going. Not sure what to expect.
    Carol in Michigan

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    Super Member Sunnie's Avatar
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    The exhibited quilts were wonderful, but I never located the winning quilts. There seemed to be less vendors and some were "fillers", more non-quilting vendors such as jewelry. In the past there had been one jewelry, but now I think I saw 3 jewelry and one of them was not quilting or sewing related. I think last year the colors exhibited and vendors' exhibits were too drab for me.
    Sunnie
    a dog show & quilt addict
    www.buckhollow.net

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    Super Member Veronica's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunnie View Post
    Maybe it is just me, but this is the second year that I attended the AQS show in Lancaster that I walked away feeling let down. Three years ago I was so thrilled with the show, but since then it has seemed depressing. I did go to the Lancaster Spring Quilt Show which was strictly vendors many of whom were at the AQS show in past years. I actually left the AQS show and went back to the Lancaster Spring Quilt Show to purchase several items. Anyone else feeling let down.
    This was my first time at the AQS show, I thought the quilts were unbelievable.
    They are truly artist, in my wildest dreams I could never make anything so beautiful.
    But I have to give a BIG thumbs down to the vendors, I bought nothing.
    I also went to the Lancaster Spring Quilt Show and purchase sever items, much better vendors.
    Veronica

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    I was disappointed also. Two of us went today. First the signage was terrible. We parked, in the rain, went into the Host, only to be told to go around the hotel to another building, lots of steps. I know there was a place to enter with a wheelchair but it was not marked. Women hated the steps. I did enjoy the WWII quilts but I was not impressed other then that. It was nearly noon, so we hunted a restaurant closed to intown where the other place was. $11 to get in and $7 to park in the parking lot. There again, signage was terrible. Coming back out, I used the GPS and went out of our way on that. By the time we got hungry for something, around 3:30 the food places were closed except a snack place. I enjoyed some of the quilts but I kept seeing signs "Quilt moved to the winner's circle" or something like that, so we had to hunt them down. Vendors were all around the quilts and had to hurry to see them. Some of the quilts were beautiful but the vendors did not carry much yardage, more precuts. I was looking for 11 yds of the light aqua fabrics and found none to my liking. Met some nice people from all over but one "quilt police" literally yelled at my friend and told her to get her hands off the quilt. Nothing nice about her. I wanted to stay overnight because I wanted to go to the Continental Inn where there were more vendors but it closed too early. We had more laughs among us so that was our day. I had $hundreds with me but spent only about $60. Had to get that little twister ruler and some papers to do pics on my computer. I left my "treasures" in the sack until tomorrow. Maybe I will enjoy them better. Next show for me is in Meyersdale, Pa. at the Pennsylvania Maple Festival. (Western Pa. in Somerset County). Small show but good. Hope to see some of you there.

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    Super Member joysewer's Avatar
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    I didn't go to the AQS show but a friend at guild heard people at our meeting saying they were disappointed in that show this year. We went to the spring show and the show at the Host. I hope they move the AQS show next year and heard other people say they liked it better when it was at the Host.
    Gloria 

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    Junior Member An Arm Long's Avatar
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    I decided not to go to the show this year but am going in May spending two nights just to go to the shops in the area. Love those shops!
    Beth in Maryland

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    The first several years that AQS held its show in Paducah, you couldn't keep me away. Then we moved from Memphis and that made it a little less easy to go, so I stopped. THEN they opened the one at Knoxville...I went the first year and, since it didn't really compare with the one in Paducah, I haven't tried to get to another. I guess it's been two-three years since I went...now, if they brought something like that here where I live now, I'd give it a try at least once. IMHO, if the vendors don't stay organized and ahead of the game, the quilters won't come...and that's kind of what I see beginning to happen, although I hope not! I love this career choice and don't want to see it not survive!
    If you feel like you're special...it's 'cause you are!
    Momto5

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    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I chat with all the vendors while I'm at Paducah. If they aren't busy they all love to vent! LOL. Many are choosing to not vend in the show but in the town, not under AQS. I heard some eye opening stories about the quilt show vendor politics at AQS shows. If the town wasn't involved in the Paducah quilt show I wouldn't go just for the AQS show. This will be my first time in years not going to Paducah. I chose a quilt retreat during that time instead.
    Got fabric?

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    Senior Member JSNOMORE's Avatar
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    Ijust got back from a four day trip to Lancaster AQS. I'm not sure why anyone would be disappointed. The show was fabulous. The vendors where wonderful. Saw quite a few new vendors with new products and not the same old stuff. I have never shopped for yardage at a show as most of the time its way too expensive. I alo work for a shop and I can tell you it isn't very economical to lug yardage to shows which is why you usually see just precuts. My Mom and I stay at the Marriott where it is held and the staff is just wonderful. They can't do enough for you. We googled our directions and had absolutely no problem getting there. I also took classes while I was there and learned so much. I have already booked my room for next year. As far as the show at the continental WAY to crowded in the booths. They were sooo small you couldn't even turn around. won't go back there.Also can't figure out why noone could find the winners circle it was right in the middle

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    Never went to the Lancaster show. Would love to.
    Ragamuffin, I am heading to the Maple Festival on the 1st.

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    Super Member quilt3311's Avatar
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    I think any show is in the eyes of the beholder. When I go to one of the large shows I am in awe of all the beautiful quilts that are hung.
    The vendors are usually pretty good, but that is not the main reason I go to the shows. I want to see the quilts and can spend days just looking at the quilts. Always buy the DVD (when available) to go back and remember what the quilts look like.
    As for vendors, I have a friend who vends at the big shows. All the work bringing things and setting up a booth, then being on ones feet for days with little or no chance to rest just amazes me. Unless a person has actually vended at a large show, we do not have a clue how exhausting it is. I've watched her booth for a bit while she gets something to eat or just takes a small break. I know I couldn't do it for days.
    I don't think anyone can imagine the thrill of coming into the show and seeing that your quilt has moved to the "winners area". Its happened once for me and the feeling is just unbelievable. There is usually a designated area where the winners are hung, usually somewhere in the middle of the show area.

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    Member elliot's Avatar
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    I went to lancaster show yesterday, it was my first time. I also came away feeling disappointed. I won't go again. None of the vendors impressed me.

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    The AQS Knoxville show will instead be held in Grand Rapids Michigan this August. I'm looking forward to it. Grand Rapids is a lovley city.
    http://aqsgrandrapids.com/

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    AQS shows

    Quote Originally Posted by Steady Stiching View Post
    The AQS Knoxville show will instead be held in Grand Rapids Michigan this August. I'm looking forward to it. Grand Rapids is a lovley city.
    http://aqsgrandrapids.com/
    My friend comes from Florida every year and we go to Paducah AQS (I live outside of Nashville). I always enjoy the show even last year when it was affected by the horrible flood in Paducah. There is always lots of transportation (via buses) to all the areas where quilts and vendors are. I think the buses run every 10 minutes or so. I never went to Knoxville since everyone who went was disappointed. It is my hope that the show will come back to Nashville. We are building a new convention center with a hotel attached so it would be a great place!!! They stopped coming to Opryland in Nashville since I heard there was a disagreement with the hotel (just gossip), but at any rate, actually, that show (the Nashville one) was as large or larger than Paducah since there is so much more to do here than in Paducah so families came. At any rate my friend and I are gearing up for Paducah and anticipate a great time as always.

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    Junior Member aggie's Avatar
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    I was disappointed as well. I think there should be show specials. Very few discounts. And we went to Burkholders where I overheard that if you came with the bus you received a discount. I was annoyed. My husband and traveled from Long Island by car. We really made an effort to find the place only to pay full price. The upside of the show was the B&B were we stayed. It was wonderful.

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    This was my first time at the Lancaster show also. It was Friday afternoon before the start of a class that I was told there was another show downtown. I thought the show at the Host was the show. I was very disappointed in that, thinking it was the show. However, from comments I have read on this blog, I didn't miss anything, especially the entrance fee and the parking fee. A beautiful quilt is a beautiful quilt is a beautiful quilt. A talented quilter is a talented quilter is a talented quilter. It doesn't really matter whether it's an AQS show or your local quilt guild. I belong to a quilt guild where the quilts at their recent show were stunning. Absolutely stunning.

    I did go to a class at the Host given by Stephanie Farrell on Beautiful Bindings. She was wonderful. She went over
    everything she does in sewing a binding. I learned a great deal, and I even came home with a sample of joining the binding ends when you're finished with a quilt, which is always a problem for me. It is pinned. So, I'll have an actual example of what I need to do as I do it.

    I love going to the various vendors more than I do the quilt shows themselves. I do, however, agree that the World War II quilts were wonderful. It is such a nice feeling to know that people are saving and treasuring these quilts.

    The vendors, I thought, at the Continental Inn were great. There were two Amish women who were at one of the booths looking at items. I figured if it's good enough for the locals, it's good enough for me. I think they were Amish. I can't remember the color of their hats. I wanted to see the Old Country Store. I heard from people you will be disappointed. I didn't care. I wanted to see it. I did see it and I loved it. I also loved the checkout procedure. One cuts, one makes out the ticket, and then you pay at the front of the store. Great system. The line went quickly.
    I went to Zook's. Could barely move it was so crowded. Their cutting table had six women cutting, six women making up the tickets, and two people at checkout. It was so crowded I was mumbling to myself when I left the store.

    So many fabric stores, so little time, and not enough allocated in the budget. I did purchase a cutting gizmo, a new cutting board, some fabric (had to buy some from the Old Country Store), two Purple Thangs (for the double wedding ring bed runner I'm making. It was recommended in the pattern), had a couple of good Amish meals, and probably wwill go again, now that I know where to go and what to see.

    I do know if I want to see the shows I need to do them first thing in the morning and then go shopping. The shows close at six, but the fabric stores were open until eight on Wednesday and Thursday and way later than that on Friday.
    I could have gone to the AQS show on Saturday before I came home, but I had brought my cat with me and I didn't want to leave him in the car while I went to see the show. Maybe next year.

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    Senior Member bobquilt3's Avatar
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    I went Thursday with 2 friends. They were into looking at quilts and we never got to the venders. The quilts were quite amazing. It was funny, the popular color this year seemed to be orange. My friend does NOT like it and it got to be a joke. . . oh boy, there's another one. We grabbed a container of soup at the show and liked it. Yup, it was orange. (Sweet potato and I'm sure some didn't care for it)
    I came away wishing I'd had more time to check out the venders but loved the quilts. I wasn't aware of the SPQ at the Host or I would have checked that out the next day. Sorry I missed it.

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    Super Member lpsewing's Avatar
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    The BIG quilt show in Lancaster was DOWNTOWn @ the convention center,you had to drive there.
    I think there was alot of confusion about this,since there were two "shows" going on @ the same time in Lancaster.

    I agree w/the total confusion @ the Host Hotel,no signs where to enter ect.,although when I went back Saturday there were "paper" signs kinda posted outside but a much better way of providing information is needed !!!!

    I was looking for a sewing machine,the downtown quilt show was fantastic for anyone interested in checking out machines.Sadly I did not have more time to see the quilts on display other then a quick walk around,I had planned to go back Saturday but decided to go back to the HOST quilt show,only $3.00 the other quilt show was $11.00 (WHY so expensive) that fee to me is too much especially since I wanted to "buy" !
    lp

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    Quote Originally Posted by carrieg View Post
    Can you pinpoint what it was that made you feel letdown? Was it the type of quilts, the colors, patterns, vendors?



    There will be an AQS show in Michigan in August(?) and I plan on going. Not sure what to expect.
    I'd like to know also! I live in GR where the Michigan show is being held and have been eagerly waiting for over a year to go!

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    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grandma Mary View Post
    I'd like to know also! I live in GR where the Michigan show is being held and have been eagerly waiting for over a year to go!
    Go! Don't take someone else's opinion on it! Go see for yourself!

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    Senior Member mhollifiel's Avatar
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    And I thought it was just me! I agree that the show was a let down this year. The signage was indeed a problem and ushers were here and there but some were speaking on cell phones and "not available" immediately. I also missed the winners. Fortunately, my DH drops me off and that's a HUGE help. I only spent a couple of hours or less because I went on Friday and it was pretty crowded. I missed seeing some vendors that I was looking for as well. What I did find was thread that I wanted and was pleased with that. As a member of AQS, I only had to pay $9 and I knew nothing about another show. Would love to have taken that in. Don't our organizations know that quilters work together??? That's a page from our book they should use!

    I went last year and comparatively speaking both the quilts and the vendors were "more" everything in 2011. Still the quilts were gorgeous to see. Great work, just wish I had found the winners!

    I did enjoy shopping at Burkholders, Lapp's and Zooks. I walked out of the Old Country Store and went to Zooks where I found much more room to shop. OCS was wall to wall quilters. No room to look even. Did get some great buys and, of course, loved that. Lapp's was fun because it was a true Amish shop off the beaten path. The young lady had to turn on the oil lamps for me to see their fabric. Good prices as well.

    I spent $250 in a shop I found on the way home in Virginia where I bought Kaffee for $5 and great name cottons for $3.60. I had to really hunt it but great buys!

    I don't know that I'll even go to the AQS show again next year there but I will definitely make a spring fabric trip to the area, via that Virginia shop for SURE!!
    Last edited by mhollifiel; 03-18-2012 at 11:11 AM.
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    Super Member Sunnie's Avatar
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    Wow, that shop in Virginia sounds like a winner to me. I get to Virginia several times a year so I would love to know the name and where it is.
    Sunnie
    a dog show & quilt addict
    www.buckhollow.net

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    I went to a quilt show this weekend (Pigeon Forge) and was disappointed as well. The colors were mostly drab (Civil War and Revolutionary War) and most of the applique was raw edge. I saw only 3 quilts that were outstanding. I am not sure I'll go back next year. Maybe our fiscal depression had something to do with it, but during the last depression, quilts were happy as if to deny their current situation.

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