PADUCAH, Ky -
Those of you in your twenties often lament about how difficult the dating scene is....But what if you're older and find yourself alone? How do you find the courage to jump back in and find that special someone?
We've got some really good advice from an unexpected place; award-winning Paducah quilter Caryl Fallert.
Fallert lost her husband to a brain hemorrhage shortly after they moved to Paducah about 8 years ago. She says, "Initially, I thought I was married 34 years. I'm not going to start over again. I'll just enjoy being alone." But that doesn't mean she stayed at home and did nothing but make quilts. About six months after her husband's death, she decided to do something she'd always wanted to do.
"My entire life I wanted to dance and wasn't allowed to as a child." Since her husband didn't like to dance, that dream stayed on hold, until Caryl decided it was finally time to take those first steps.
Fallert started taking ballroom dance classes with local instructor Ashley Thurman. Part of that was weekly dance parties where she could also meet people and be social. She fell in love with dance, and later realized to dance really well, you need a partner. "I wasn't necessarily looking to get remarried, but for someone to do things with, companionship." She says.
Which led to another "brave" step. She went on-line and signed up on one of those dating websites. Her friends worried, but she says she met some really nice people, including a man named Ron Gentry, a scientist and former professor at the University of Minnesota. Gentry had lost his wife the year before. They talked on-line for a while and he finally traveled to Paducah so they could meet in person.
"He came to visit between Christmas and New Year and we talked for 3 days straight. The rest is history." She says. A year ago last January, Ron and Caryl got married at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah in front of 3 of her award winning quilts hanging there. And guess what; he loves to dance!
Her advice to all the single ladies out there? Be brave. Try something new.
Which leads to the happy, yet sad, ending. Caryl and Ron are relocating her studio to a place near Seattle, Washington. She's sold her studio and home in LowerTown. If you want to see her Best of Show Quilts, they are at the AQS Museum in Paducah. They have their own corner. Fallert has won more than any other quilter, 3 times. (1989,1995, 2000.)
100 Television Lane
Paducah, KY 42003