2014 Holiday Traditions Tour
40th Annual Holiday Traditions Tour
The 40th Annual Holiday Traditions Tour: Homes, Historic Buildings, Tables & Trees was held Saturday, December 6, 11 am - 5 pm and Sunday, December 7, 1 - 5 pm.
The tour featured four homes from the late 1800s to 2014, the restored 1884 Opera House, 1880 Museum, 1870 Watson one room school and 1969 contemporary First Congregational United Church of Christ celebrating 150 years all decorated for Christmas.
Governor Frank D. Fitzgerald's 1907 home at 219 W. Jefferson was shown by the present owners Matt and Loralee Dale. This three-story brick Romanesque Style home is a State Historic Site. The Dales have maintained the flavor of this historic home while adapting for a young family.
Jesse and Erin Caszatt's comfortable two-story home at 527 E. Jefferson St. was built about 1905 featuring an open staircase and pillars between the living and dining room. Jesse has built several pieces of their furniture, including a fence headboard. An enclosed porch overlooking the gardens offers an additional room in the summer.
Adam and Carrie Gross spent two years building their 2012 craftsman style home at 5521 Meranda Lane, milling their own lumber for the ash woodwork, building many unique features and their mission style bed. They are avid collectors, especially of Grand Ledge related items.
Dave and Terrie Kosbar are continually remodeling this comfortable late 1800s farm house at 630 E. St. Joe Hwy. The living room was originally a separate Mother's apt. They added a large family room in 1999 and enlarged and remodeled the kitchen in 2008/9. The home is filled with family antiques and memorabilia.
Watson School, an 1870 one room school on the corner of Benton and St. Joe has been under restoration for 25 years. The committee is anxious to share their progress with the community. It will be set up as a school room, displaying early desks, books and school records. The original school bell still works.
First Congregational United Church of Christ at 210 W. Saginaw Hwy is celebrating 150 years and are eager to share their history and third home The present church is a 1969 contemporary structure with contemporary stained-glass windows. The 1927 pipe organ was brought from the 1903 church on the corner of N. Bridge and E. Front streets.
The 1884 restored Opera House at 121 S. Bridge St. was built as a roller skating rink but became a community center called the Opera House that hosted traveling productions, served as the gym and auditorium for the high school until 1929, was a silent movie theater and later a furniture store. It will showcase decorated trees, festive tables, miniature structures and a gently used art sale. It serves as ticket headquarters. The 1928 theater organ will be played from 11 am - 1 pm Saturday and 2 - 4 pm Sunday.
The Museum is housed in an 1880 restored Gothic Revival house at 118 W. Lincoln St. The present exhibit "Public Servants: Who's Who" features mayors, council, fire, police, library, post office, cemetery, school and National Guard personnel through the years. It will be decorated for Christmas. Tickets were $8.00 presale available at the Opera House, Grand Ledge Area District Library or by credit card at 517-627-7247. Day of tickets were $10.00 tickets are available days of at the Opera House, former Fitzgerald house and Watson school.