News

2023      What a Great Year!      2023

Jan: One World Everybody Eats Summit with other Cafes from around the country / Feb: Dining for Dollars at Carolina Brewery / March: CORA Empty Bowls event / April: Volunteers at Huckleberry Trail Farm egg hunt / May: Celebrating "May the 4th" with Community Lunch friends / June: Pittsboro's first Pride event at The Plant / July: Pittsboro Business Association Summerfest volunteers serving a meal / August:  Professional Women of Chatham and Orange Counties business panel / Sept: Food truck partnership with Tramway Diner / Oct: Pittsboro Rotary Street Fair volunteers serving a meal / Nov: Thanksgiving Dinner at Postal Fish Co. / Dec: Winter Weather Survival meal & clothing distribution

Past Event Highlights

New Years Day Open House

January 1, 2024

Started the new year right by joining fellow community members for a Dessert Open House gathering at the Habitat for Humanity office in Pittsboro.  Fun games, Delicious desserts, Wonderful family and friends!

Thanksgiving

November 23, 2023

Hosted our second dinner on Thanksgiving Day with The Food Fairy, The Travelling Café and The Postal Fish Company.

A huge THANK YOU to all of our sponsors and volunteers!

Winter Weather Survival Distribution

November 11 & December 11, 2023

Organized by Melanie and Jeff York, an winter clothing distribution was held in both Pittsboro and Siler City.  We were honored to be invited as a partner and provided over 350 hot, yummy meals to community members picking up supplies for the winter.

In the News...

GuideStar

GOLD SEAL of Transparency: The Quiltmaker Cafe is excited to announce that we've earned our 2023 Gold Seal with @CandidDotOrg!  We are proud to share the work our nonprofit does throught our profile.  

Candid is an information service specializing in reporting on U.S. nonprofit companies. In 2016, its database provided information on 2.5 million organizations.  Click the gold square below to learn more!

Interview with Cooper Metts, senior at UNC Chapel Hill

Cooper Metts is a senior at UNC Chapel Hill studying journalism and economics. Cooper has worked for publications and media outlets including The Pamlico News, The Daily Tar Heel, Chapel Hill Magazine, Chatham Magazine and Curtis Media Group. Cooper hopes to begin a career in business or economics reporting after graduation this upcoming spring!

In early 2023, Jennie and Cooper met at the Chatham County Visitors Center and started discussing the Cafe.  The concept seemed interesting enough for a final class project!

Read article here

Chatham News + Record

The Cafe's Co-Founder and Executive Director, Jennie Knowlton, was listed #13 in The Chatham News+Record, The People Who Made Chatham Exceptional!

Jennie Knowlton established the nonprofit Quiltmaker Café in February 2021 with her husband David and daughter Elizabeth and a simple vision: to open a permanent fast-casual restaurant in Pittsboro using a pay-what-you-can model, in which those eating set their own price for the meal. Donations can take different forms, including monetary, produce or donations of time through volunteering.
Knowlton, who grew up experiencing food insecurity, remembers the associated stigma. A core feature of the restaurant is dignity, she said, and being able to give agency to patrons to dine out and enjoy a meal with others.
“So there’ll be no separation between who might be paying, who might be volunteering, who might be paying under,” she said. “And just building that community also with using volunteers, rather than employees, [so] that everyone is also serving each other, once again, no matter from what type of means they might be coming from.

Chatham News + Record

PITTSBORO ­— For those looking for a hot meal but without Thanksgiving plans, or if you’re simply seeking company and conversation, Pittsboro’s Quiltmaker Café is hosting a Thanksgiving event to provide a space for it all — regardless of ability to pay.

This year marks the first time the nonprofit Quiltmaker Café is holding a “Pay-What-You-Can” meal for Thanksgiving; it’s scheduled for 1 to 3 p.m. on Thanksgiving day — Thursday, Nov. 24 — at Postal Fish Company in Pittsboro.

For café co-founder and executive director Jennie Knowlton, it’s a day she’s looking forward to for a number of reasons.

Front Page News! November 16, 2022

CH@T with the Chatham News + Record

Jennie Knowlton, founder and executive director of The Quiltmaker Café, began her first nonprofit journey early last year, along with her husband, David, and daughter, Elizabeth.

Having experienced food insecurity herself during different periods in her life, she says she can personally relate to the dignity lost as choices become fewer and fewer. With The Quiltmaker Cafe — set to open soon in Pittsboro — Knowlton is excited to combine her passion for reducing waste with her desire to address growing food insecurity by providing a space where all are welcome to a meal and community. This week, we spoke with Knowlton about her plans for the cafe.

Read more of The Quiltmaker Cafe's Q&A with Chatham News + Record from February 23, 2022 here

Interview from First Sunday, April 2022

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram @quiltmakercafe

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