Blankets to aid Jesup

Kirsten Stockman, left, with other members of the Maine Women's Balkan Choir. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE JESUP

Kirsten Stockman, left, with other members of the Maine Women’s Balkan Choir.

BAR HARBOR — During November, Window Panes and the family of the late Kirsten Stockman are offering wool blankets from Bulgaria to benefit the Jesup Memorial Library.

Kirsten and her husband, Tom Crikelair, imported wool blankets that they purchased from friends in Bulgaria and have sold them at Window Panes and online for several years.

Kirsten founded the Maine Women’s Balkan Choir, and as a member of Trio Elitsa, performed Bulgarian music in the U.S., Canada and Bulgaria. The blanket benefit is offered in memory of Kirsten, who died from colon cancer in 2013.

“Kirsten loved our local library, and she loved our librarians,” said Crikelair. “Before our daughters were born, she and I used to spend wonderful winter Saturdays at the Jesup. My girls and I are carrying on this tradition,” he said.

The blankets are produced by master weaver Boyan Stoimenov, the husband of Neda Bisserova, who performed in Bar Harbor with the Bisserov Sisters in 2002. The wool throws measure five by seven feet and are made from natural-color dye-free wool. Crikelair is in the process of closing his blanket business and transferring his remaining stock of blankets to Window Panes.

“Store owners in the U.S. have suggested that the price for these blankets be set somewhere between $75 and $150,” Crikelair said. “They are available at Window Panes during November for $39,” he said, “with all proceeds going to the library.”

“We are excited to collaborate with Tom and his girls and hope that the Balkan blanket fundraiser can provide the Jesup with a little financial stimulus during their capital campaign,” said a statement from Greg and Julie Veilleux.



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