McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

October 16, 2013

Oklahoma Mennonite Relief Sale is slated Nov. 1-2 at Expo Center

By Robert Barron, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — The annual Oklahoma Mennonite Relief Sale will be held Nov. 1-2 at the Garfield County Expo Center.

Last year’s sale topped all previous sales by more than $30,000, bringing in $176,000. The group offered over 100 quilts and textiles, said Carol Detweiler, chairperson of quilt sales for the 2013 event.

This year’s event will feature the usual attractions, including food sales of apple butter, bierocks, bratwurst, ice cream, sausage, Russian pancakes and verenika, among other items. There also will be craft booths and quilts, with this year’s sale eclipsing previous sales, said Luella Unruh, longtime volunteer and member of Grace Mennonite Church in Enid.

“There’s nothing different this year. We’ll have the craft auction and the quilts and food and all that,” Unruh said. One program this year will be the “Buy it now” sale. A price will be placed on quilts and possibly crafts. Individuals who don’t want to wait for the auction may buy the quilt at the price posted, or take their chance at the auction.

“If someone doesn’t want to wait for the auction, they can buy it now,” Unruh said. The price placed on the items will not change and they will take a chance that it doesn’t go for less than the posted price at the auction, she said. The prices will be what the committee determines is fair for each quilt or craft.

In addition, the food booths will be open with pies, bierocks and bratwurst. There will be homemade ice cream made by the Amish.

“Our church will bake a lot of pies on the Thursday before the sale at Grace Mennonite,” she said.

A number of other churches also will contribute pies, and the sauerkraut already has been made.

Area Mennonites have been holding the quilt sale for more than 30 years, and about 20 years in Enid, Unruh said. The sale originally was held in Fairview.

She said the quilts made are outstanding quality, and one quilt will be voted by attendees and named Peoples’ Choice. It will be sold at noon Nov. 2.

“I’ve seen some of the quilts and they are wonderful, they’re gorgeous,” Unruh said. “We will have exceptional quality as we always do. The Amish will bring their quilts.”

Friday, they will sell frozen bierocks that people can take home and cook, and a pork loin dinner is featured Friday night, with Saturday morning a breakfast of pancakes and sausage. Last year, the auction raised more money than any previous sale.

The schedule Nov. 1 begins with some booths opening at 4 p.m. From 5-7 p.m. the smoked pork loin dinner is held and other booths will be open. From 6-9 p.m., an open house is slated, with the sale of priced items in the booths and the “buy it now” opens for quilts. A music program begins at 6:30 and the auction begins at 7:30.

There is a pancake and sausage breakfast slated 7 to 9:30 a.m. Saturday, and all booths open at 8 a.m. At 9 a.m., craft auctions begin. At the conclusion of the craft auction, at about 11:30 a.m., the quilt auction begins. At noon, the Peoples’ Choice quilt is auctioned.

No “Buy it now” items will be reserved after the sale begins at 9 a.m.

The sale is one of 46 relief sales held in the U.S. and Canada, to raise money for the Mennonite Central Committee. Each year the committee responds to disasters, earthquakes, floods, violence and war through aid and relief kits. Mennonite Central Committee is the relief service, and community development agency for the Amish, Mennonite, Mennonite Brethren and Brethren in Christ churches.