Five homes, historic church on holiday tour

December 09, 2005|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - Five private homes and a church will be the destinations Sunday for more than 300 visitors taking part in the Heritage Christmas Home Tour, a highlight of the 2005 edition of the Greencastle-Antrim Heritage Christmas celebration.

The celebration, now in its 15th year, kicked off with the Holiday Open House on the weekend of Nov. 11 and 12 and ends Dec. 18 with a brunch and Christmas celebration at the Antrim Brethren in Christ Church.

The weekend of Nov. 18 and 19 saw the annual tree-lighting ceremony and Christmas parade. There were no celebration activities on the Thanksgiving weekend. Events were held last weekend and are scheduled for the next two.


According to its brochure, Heritage Christmas "has become a community tradition. A unique blend of business, service clubs, churches and individuals come together to bring their spirit of the season alive in our community."

The celebration is coordinated by the Greencastle-Antrim Chamber of Commerce. Bill Gour is the chamber's executive director.

Activities include horse-and-carriage rides, carol singing, seasonal foods from a variety of vendors in the public square, a balloon bender and a bagpiper.

Planning for the annual celebration begins in August when Gour lines up volunteers and events.

Serving on the home tour committee this year are Gour, Julie Statler, Anne Larew, Gay Buchanan and Cheryl Shields.

This is the sixth year for the home tour, Gour said. It runs Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. Tickets cost $10 each and can be bought at the Chamber of Commerce office at 217 E. Baltimore St. or at the Holiday House on the square Friday from 5:30 to 10 p.m.

The six stops on the tour include:

· The home of James and Laura Byers at 10180 Grindstone Hill Road.

Theirs is a contemporary two-story brick home that the couple designed and built themselves. Nestled in woods, the house offers a view of nature from every side.

· The home of Richard and Toni Brewbaker at 141 N. Linden Ave. They bought their Williamsburg-style Cape Cod in 1999. The house was built in 1947 on plans that had been drawn in 1939. Some of the bricks in the house served as ballast on a ship.

· The home of Barry, Chad and Cory Smith at 336 E. Madison St. The house is described in the tour brochure as "one of Greencastle's coziest two-story houses." The Smiths spent more than a year and a half restoring the home.

· The home of Krista and Peter Huntley at 359 E. Baltimore St. It's a "beautiful brick Victorian with the inviting front porch," according to the brochure. The basement of the house at one time served as the office of a local doctor. The Huntleys moved in more than a year ago.

· The home of Paul and Karen Bitner at 344 E. Baltimore St. It has been referred to in a local newspaper as "the Decorator House."

· Greencastle Otterbein United Brethren Church at 146 Leitersburg St. is also on the tour. The congregation's history dates to 1767. The members dedicated a building in 1892 and remodeled it in 1940, but the congregation outgrew that building. The cornerstone for the current building was laid in 1971 on the corner of Leitersburg and South Allison streets.

The annual Heritage Christmas ornament, which features the Chamber's 50th anniversary this year, is on sale throughout the month at the Chamber office and during Heritage Christmas. The ornament costs $18.02 with tax, he said.

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