There were no snack platters overflowing with nachos.
No beer or other adult beverages.
No high-definition TV set to show the big game.
But none of the half dozen ladies in a back room at The Quilt Crossing was complaining Sunday afternoon, when millions across the country were settling in for the Super Bowl.
They had gathered for the second annual Charity Bowl.
Everyone there was on the same team The NICU Quilters working toward one goal: making quilts for premature babies born at Treasure Valley hospitals.
Its close to our hearts, said Colleen Madsen of Boise. Having homemade quilts makes a critical situation less scary. The nurses like it, the parents like it.
The NICU Quilters, who gather monthly, donated 114 quilts to local hospitals over the past year.
Madsen tears up when she talks about what the quilts mean to families. She knows from personal experience her grandson Max was just 2 pounds at birth, and her granddaughter Raegan was 4 pounds.
Its scary, she said of premies fragility. Their skin is like tissue.
It calms you down to see the pretty quilts, Madsen said.
Meridian quilter Joanne Brown was one of the newcomers to the group Sunday.
Her grandson, Sam Lawrence, was under 3 pounds when he was born. She said the homemade quilt and little cap he received made the hospital feel less sterile.
Linda Sullivan joined the group in the summer. She donates about two quilts a month.
I just like to make quilts. I give them to everybody who wants one, she said.
Marie Cooper worked on a bright purple and pink quilt that featured hearts and stars. She talked about losing one of her twin babies four decades ago.
Shed love to make quilts for her daughter but shes a quilter too.
I keep saying Im not going to do it anymore, said Cooper, who donated 10 to 12 quilts to hospitals last year.
The most prolific quilt maker of the bunch is Linda Liquin, a Meridian grandma who feels lucky that her twin granddaughters were only in the NICU for a couple hours after their birth. She made 30 quilts this past year.
The quilt shop was busy Sunday afternoon, as shopper took advantange of a sale and donated food as part of the Souper Bowl Pantry Party.
Did any of the NICU quilters plan to watch the Super Bowl?
Maybe for the commercials, Cooper said.
The groups next meeting is 2-5 p.m. Tuesday, March 5, at The Quilt Crossing, 10959 W Fairview Ave., Boise. Anyone who would like to make cotton quilts for premies may donate them through the foundation offices at the hospitals.
Katy Moeller: 377-6413