A delegation from Buffalo attending the City Day celebration of Buffalo's sister city in the Soviet Union, Kalinin, will carry a gift that is pure Americana, a Friendship Quilt.
"I specifically wanted a Friendship Quilt as our gift because it is distinctly American," said Cynthia Lehman-Budd, chairwoman of the Buffalo-Kalinin Sister Cities.
Nina Tretiak Shields, representing the sister cities group, heads the Buffalo delegation that also includes Richard F. Harrington, headmaster of Calasanctius Preparatory School, and Ellen Dixon, representing the Burchfield Art Center.
The group, which left Buffalo Wednesday, is scheduled to return June 27. They will present the quilt to Kalinin's mayor, Aleksandr Petrovich Belousov, during a special reception.
The quilt, started by the Southtowns Piecemakers Quilting Guild of East Aurora in September, is done in traditional form in red, white and blue, 78 inches square.
Center sections are the bear's paw pattern, both the symbol of the guild and a representation of the Russian bear. Messages in Russian and English were cross-stitch embroidered and squares with white buffalos mark the corners.
The design, according to Mrs. Lehman-Budd, was a group effort. Embroidered linen in the center was donated by Alice Goszewski, a guild member who visited Kalinin in 1976 and purchased the material at that time.
Guild members, all 100 of them, made a square each and signed the ones in the center. Basting was done at the February meeting of the guild and then the quilt was passed from one member's home to another for quilting.
Members of the sister cities group signed the outer squares when the quilt was completed. "Many hands quilt with thoughts of PEACE" is inscribed on the reverse side.
The Buffalo delegation to Kalinin also will discuss several exchange proposals, including an "art swap" between sixth-graders here and in Kalinin.
Also to be arranged is the pairing of a school in Kalinin with Calasanctius to develop pen pals, and exchanges of student art work, essays, fiction and exchanges of teachers and students.
The Buffalo-Kalinin Sister Cities group has 200 members.