TWEP [Today's Women of the Eastern Panhandle] and the Fiber Cafe' are clubs formed to invite ladies to come together to share their skills with knitting, crocheting, painting, reading and plain fun get-to-gethers in the Eastern Panhandle of WV
Today’s Women of the Eastern Panhandle [TWEP] and Fiber Café
Recalling the year, it was two-thousand six when an Open House was held in Martinsburg where ten to fifteen ladies came to meet and displayed their art, crafts, and books. They all had a nice time talking and getting to know each other. Food was plenty with fruit, vegetable trays, and punch. Of course chocolate and sweets always serves as an ice-breaker at any event. Before leaving the ladies had the website and knew each other as if they had been friends forever. Thus the TWEP [Today’s Women of the Eastern Panhandle] began
Mrs. Cathy Clark, from Arlington, VA (original from New York) who now lives in Inwood with her husband William (Bill) Clark and Ms. Jeannette Tremouliaris of Florida wanted to meet other women in the community so they advertised the first Open House to welcome ladies to come together to bring things of interest or hobbies of individuals to show. So it began, a monthly meeting or get-together.
Using the Internet to communicate with each other as well as the phone, ladies would share crafts and skills and inform all in what was happening in the community or their lives and where the next event would be held. Sometimes they’d meet and have tea at a local Bistro, Roosters or the Daily Grind coffee house. It would be decided then to meet at different homes or take mini-trips.
Mrs. Clark whose interests in helping the community, giving her time between the Berkeley County Senior Center, the Lion’s Club of Berkeley County and the AARP along with husband Bill thought this would be a good way to continue meeting those with like interests.
As for Jeanette she has since went on to pursue a career in transportation but has been instrumental in teaching crafts, flower arrangements and quilting to some of its members. Today’s Women started a forum and members have over the years kept in touch with all the happenings on the website. The forum address is http://forums.delphiforums.com/TWEP you may have to sign-in with a user name and password the first time you visit the site.
Now two other ladies joined from that first meeting and have been with TWEP ever since, Sandi Snyder of Berkeley Springs and Author Mona R. Adams of Inwood. Sandi, a one-stroke painter and licensed with Donna Dewberry, a master gardener and a quilter of unimaginable talent is now perusing a degree in Art from Shepherd University at this time, she hopes someday to teach fine arts. Sandi has been an inspiration to the club’s quilting group and one-stroke painting while Mona is known as the Blue Ridge Mountain Poet or Poetlady in the community. Her poetry touches the hearts of those who have had the chance to read her published works. Being a three time cancer survivor, she dedicates a lot of her time in helping other survivors.
Her books A Poet’s Treasury in West Virginia and Mountains of Treasure are currently in seventeen different countries as she continues working for the community through serving as a coordinator of The Poetry Corner helping poets get their poetry published. Three county Relay for Life events, the Red Hat Society City Belles and still finds the time to include working for the Fiber Café and BOOKLOVERS, a newly formed reading club in the Eastern Panhandle. She also sometimes volunteers to help students of Berkeley County with lectures on writing and reading rhyming and metered poetry. She truly is a Today’s Woman.
Today’s Women has so much to offer for those who like to be involved with different aspects of crafting, knitting, quilting or just belonging to a group of friendly people. It began simply as a meeting for women but soon grew to be an umbrella organization and with the help of JoAnn Brennan of Hedgesville and Cathy Clark, The Fiber Café’ came into being.
For over a year now ladies had been meeting at the Daily Grind to share their knitting and crocheting experience, learn basic steps to make a scarf or purse. For some more experienced members they have made sweaters and afghans. But due to growth the club moved to the Market Place Café’ inside of Martins Foods on Foxcroft Avenue…complete with a cozy fireplace and tables for all. And an added convenience if you need to pick up something it’s all under one roof.
Cathy’s love for knitting socks and JoAnn’s love of knitting was the catalyst that started the beginning what is now a weekly meeting for all. Fiber Café’ has grown in spirit as well as size and all are welcome to attend the weekly meetings where you can enjoy a cozy fireplace, sip a coffee or tea or latte.
Fiber Café; a club for people who like to knit or crochet meet on Thursdays from 6:00 pm-9:00 pm to share stories and patterns while working on a project of choice . There are lessons for beginners as well. Mrs. Brennan, an expert knitter travels around to yarn shops in the area as well as out of state and members who would like to tag along are welcome to go. She and her husband who is now serving in Bosnia live in Hedgesville.
Learning of her passion for the feel of fine yarn while yet another member, an expert knitter and weaver Gwen Grisham taught the art of spinning as they did long ago. The friendships that form within the circle share an equal part in the meetings sort of like Girls Gone Knitting. Good for the community and family... teaching meaningful things to younger generations as well as something for everyone who enjoys working with their hands.
You might see some of the ladies at the home of a member learning how to preserve tomatoes, peaches or green beans… or the rare art of making homemade bread …making bed dolls from yarn, a Christmas stocking from old quilting material and other lost skills from the past.
TWEP holds an annual event in September with lots of silly fun called the White Elephant Bingo. It is always changing. So all members are learning different ideas from the group... dining out at different restaurants like the Cracker Barrel or traveling to Winchester to the Olive Garden.
Cookouts are held in June, a delightful time to enjoy with an old friend or with brand new friends… they welcome you with open arms, you never feel like a stranger. Different trips have been taken to Annapolis, MD Berkeley Springs, Shepherdstown, Cumberland and more trips are being planned for the future.
TWEP include painting classes with the help of Sandi Snyder; we have finished some nice works of art. We also work on quilting with member Becky Pyles of Pikeside, who is one of the finest and often invites us into her sewing room where there is something for everyone to do.
Bingo, tea parties and movies nights have been held and trips to local businesses as well… we are a group of ladies of the past and of the future… living for today, looking to keep our lives fuller and our families richer in the knowledge of sharing skills we have learned.
Our Christmas Dinner/ Luncheon usually is held at the Charlestown Races and Slots and we do a cookie jar exchange filled with our own special cookies in December. So come join in all the fun with Today’s Women of the Eastern Panhandle (TWEP) there is so much to do and we do work hard at having fun!
This year Fiber Café worked on a scarecrow for Main Street Martinsburg in honor and memory of our fiber friend, Mrs. Mary (Wendy) McElveen. Our Wendy could crochet anything and was a wonderful instructor. She made the most beautiful afghans and bed dolls.
This group is open to the public and there is no charge or dues. No age limit is required as the age ranges from early teens to older than dirt. We don’t tell or care about age as long as you like to share or learn a skill, or just have fun being with others. No dress code or hat to wear but we sure have fun The idea for this group came about for women to have a little time to share with each other their skills or crafts. Every week we get more calls to join and we welcome those who would like to enjoy an evening with the girls, to share a little time and have fun.
Whether knitting, crocheting, painting, quilting or reading a book we have something for all. To join or for more information you can email: twepwv.yahoo.com or visit our forum http://forums.delphiforums.com/TWEP or you can call Cathy at 304-229-6519 or Mona Adams at 304-229-0226 a different type of club for the Today’s Women…and Fiber Café’ for those who just love to work with yarn and fabric. We wish everyone a great holiday season this year.