Heartland business celebrates 60 years selling hand-loomed rugs

 Heartland business celebrates 60 years selling hand-loomed rugs


AVA, Ill. (KFVS) – A Heartland business is celebrating their 60th anniversary this weekend.

The Ava Craft Center 2.0 SEMO had people come out to enjoy food, drinks, good conversation and to see what the company had to offer.

They have been in business since 1962 specializing in rag rugs from upcycled fabric made from antique floor looms.

The business started in Ava, Illinois stretching four generations.

“It’s very exciting,” Ava Craft Center Owner Lorri Yount said. “We’re happy to share the art of weaving and the history of weaving so that’s one of our emphasis here today is sharing the history of these looms, their start and how they’ve made an impact on little communities and what they’ve meant throughout the ages.”

Yount said their business has survived lots of challenges in the last six decades and even changing locations from Ava, Illinois to Burfordville, Missouri.

“Every place we’ve been, whether it’s in Illinois or whether it’s been here, we’ve been placed in a small community,” Yount said. “When you’re in a community, it may be in hard times, but when you’re in a small community people bind together and even back in Illinois, our storefront is not there at the moment, people even from Illinois still come over here and support us.”

Yount said she appreciates the support from the customers they’ve had over the many years.

“The support from your friends and your family and those that are around you from your past know, it’s overwhelming,” Yount said. “It’s just a great feeling that you have that much support.”

Nancy Amsden made the drive to come down and visit with the employees there during their 60-year celebration. She said it’s great to see this business survive and flourish throughout the years.

“You see very few businesses that have gone through everything that this family has gone through,” Amsden said. “And to keep it alive and generations alive and interested. This is an old-time craft that’s come from so far, so many years back.”

The Ava Craft Center had multiple people make the trip out from various states across the nation.

“I personally didn’t realize how much of a reach that even our little page had,” Yount said. “We’ve had people from Indiana, from Illinois, surrounding areas come to our event today. Even for our rug weaving class, I’ve had a rug weaver from New York, a rug weaver from Georgia. People have come from far to come and share with us in this trade.”

The owners even invited some antique loom historians as special guests from Texas to talk about the trade to the guests at the event.

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