Northport quilter Dianne S. Hire has been selected as a semifinalist for the 2010 AQS Quilt Show & Contest, which will run Wednesday through Saturday, April 21 through 24, at the Paducah Expo Center.

Hire has been chosen to display her quilt “Ballet,” along with 386 others in the annual contest now in its 26th year. Three quilting authorities will judge this elite group in Paducah, awarding first, second and third place prizes in 15 categories, along with nine overall awards. Winners will be announced Tuesday evening, April 20. Cash awards totaling $120,000 will be granted. Regardless of how “Ballet” places in the final judging, all semifinalists’ quilts will be displayed at the show, which is expected to draw more than 30,000 people.

Quilts were entered in this international contest from 47 states and 10 other countries. The quilt artists employ a wide variety of techniques and design methods ranging from traditional pieced patterns to original painted and embellished motifs. The American Quilter’s Society hosts four shows annually, each with its own quilt contest.

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VillageSoup Art/Entertainment Editor Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to