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Holiday Home Tour set for Saturday at nine locations

By Laura Hayes

laurahayes@pressandjournal.com

717-944-4628
Posted 12/5/18

There are boxes of ornaments around Anne Einhorn’s Christmas tree in her family room. Garlands are strung over her fireplace, and green sprigs poke out of a large jug sitting by the window. …

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Holiday Home Tour set for Saturday at nine locations

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There are boxes of ornaments around Anne Einhorn’s Christmas tree in her family room. Garlands are strung over her fireplace, and green sprigs poke out of a large jug sitting by the window.

Einhorn likes to decorate for every holiday, and Christmas is no exception. It took her two-and-a-half days to decorate the room. Decorating is a great creative outlet, she said.

This year, she decorated the room for the annual Middletown Holiday Home Tour on Saturday.

“I love seeing everyone else’s houses and getting inspiration from them,” Einhorn said.

Her home is one of the nine stops on the tour this year, which runs from 1 to 8 p.m. Tickets cost $15, and are still available at the Press & Journal at 20 S. Union St. Cash and checks will be accepted.

On the day of the tour, tickets can also be purchased at The Event Place at 11 S. Union St.

“It’s a great experience. … People are just always in such good spirits, and it’s fun to have the decorating that you do and the spirit that you’re trying to create appreciated,” Einhorn said.

The tour has been held for 16 years. Planning committee chairwoman Carole Shanaman said during the course of the year, the committee notes beautifully decorated homes. Sometimes, tour guests recommend homes or homeowners call and ask to be on the tour.

This year, there are six homes in both Lower Swatara Township and Middletown on the tour along with three public buildings — the Historical Museum, Evangelical United Methodist Church and The Event Place, which is also the hospitality center for the tour and will feature an art exhibit and basket raffle.

The exact locations of the homes will be provided once a ticket is purchased.

The tour is self-guided. Once you have your ticket, take it to The Event Place, where you will be handed a tour map and a bracelet to get you into the homes.

“During this time of year when people are stressed out, it’s a nice way to get them out and in the Christmas spirit,” Shanaman said.

This isn’t the first time that Einhorn’s home on West Main Street has been featured on the tour. Einhorn spends her Christmas with her family in Massachusetts, but she said being on the tour gives her the opportunity to decorate her home for the holiday.

She decorates her home differently every year. Parts of her home were built in the mid-1700s by the Croll family. Einhorn said the house stayed in the family until she and her husband purchased it in 1997.

During the tour, Einhorn said tourists will visit and share stories about playing in the yard or knowing the past owners of her house.

Sometimes Einhorn draws inspiration for her decorations from magazines, but she also lets the history of the house guide her decorating. For example, the living room resembles a colonial Williamsburg, Virginia, home, and Einhorn decorates the room similar to how Williamsburg homes are decorated, filled with magnolias, natural feathers and cotton.

Her family room is in the former barn and still has the original beams. She draws inspiration from folk art and the barn’s history while decorating the room.

Five years ago, a Nutcracker Tea was added. This year, the tea is being held at the Fulling Mill Inn on Fulling Mill Road. However, Shanaman said the tickets sold out for the first time and currently they have a waiting list.

Giving back to the community is the main concern of the tour, Shanaman said. She said the tour supports other local nonprofits such as the Middletown Area Historical Society or Middletown Public Library.

This year, proceeds are going toward the RaiderPacks Program, which provides Middletown Area School District students with a bag of food every week.

Visit www.middletownholidayhometour.com for more information.