BY NANCY GAGNET | MIRROR REPORTER — Several residents and business owners are opening their doors to the public this weekend for a Holiday Home Tour.
The event, which is sponsored by the Maumee Senior Center, features four homes, one tiny home, one business and one church, all beautifully decorated for the holidays.
The Maumee Holiday Home Tour is a revamped version of the Historic Home Tour that used to take place annually, though the last tour was in 2016, according to Malinda Ruble, executive director of the Maumee Senior Center.
“This was a good time to bring it back,” Ruble said of the tour. “It’s a great way to get into the holiday spirit.”
The Maumee High School Select Singers will perform at the Maumee Senior Center, where refreshments will also be served.
Primary sponsors are Buehrer Group Architecture and Engineering and Savage & Associates, which each gave $1,000 to the event.
Special gift baskets will also be raffled, including one basket with a $500 Appliance Center gift card.
The tour begins at the Maumee Senior Center, and free shuttle service is available to all of the sites.
The Maumee Senior Center Holiday Home Tour will take place on Sunday, December 8 from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Tickets are $20.00 in advance or $25.00 the day of the tour and may be purchased at the Maumee Senior Center, Maumee Chamber of Commerce, Maumee Indoor Theater, Dibling Floor Covering, In Bloom Flowers & Gifts, Clara J’s Tea Room, the Wolcott House Museum Store and First Presbyterian Church of Maumee.
The Maumee Senior Center is located at 2430 Detroit Ave. For information, please call the center at (419) 893-1994.
The following homes and businesses will be featured on the tour:
• 611 Manitou Dr., the home of Pam and Andrew Weisenburger:
This classic Georgian Colonial built in 1923 features an all-brick exterior with an original slate roof, a sizeable screened-in porch with slate flooring and rebuilt columns and trim work. The home was purchased by the Weisenburger family in 2014 and has undergone extensive renovation from top to bottom. Three bathrooms have been carefully renovated using vintage or period-appropriate materials and fixtures with fresh design and modern comfort in mind.
• 301 W. Broadway St., the home of Jessica and Dan Novotny:
This home built in 1850 has had seven owners, including the L.M. Murphy family, which owned the home for seven decades beginning in 1891. Mr. Murphy was a notable criminal lawyer.
In 2015, a local developer purchased and renovated the home. It took two years to completely transform the interior space, which included adding a second-floor balcony, skylights and a newly renovated kitchen and master bedroom.
The home also features an outside barn, which is original to the home and thought to have once served the Underground Railroad.
• 1032 Leith St., the home of Sharon and Brett Flory:
This unique home was originally St. Timothy’s Lutheran Church, which was built in 1959. The congregation saved the $42,000 to build the church, which is located on the corner of Seventh and Leith streets. When the church closed due to declining attendance, the Flory family purchased the church building and parsonage.
The Florys moved into the parsonage after renovating it, then spent almost a year transforming the church into a home.
Sharon Flory and her daughter Emma are artists and interior designers who tried to stay true to the age of the building, constructing a mid-century-modern-inspired interior. White walls, wood flooring and modern touches all play together to keep the space light, bright and functional.
The parsonage property will soon be an Airbnb rental called the Pastor’s Art House and will showcase local artists’ work throughout the open floor plan.
Both buildings will be open for the tour.
• 602 W. Harrison St., the home of Aubrey and Megan Hornsby:
This durable home, which was originally constructed in 2006, features poured concrete flooring between the first and second floors, making it able to withstand a tornado.
Significant renovation work took place in 2014 and 2018 on the home, which features a four-car attached garage with radiant heat floors, a dog washing station and a speaker system throughout the house. The master bath also features a huge shower with eight showerheads and heated floors.
Nature is also on full display throughout the nearly 1-acre backyard, which backs up to Side Cut Metropark and the Towpath Trail.
• 219 W. Wayne St., Suite Tea B&B owned by John Polkinghorn & Gretchen Fayerweather:
This building, which is currently home to Clara J’s Tea Room on the first floor and Suite Tea B&B on the second floor, was the original home of Reuben Mitchell, the co-founder of Maumee’s first locally owned bank, the Union Deposit.
Dr. George E. Rhone-house purchased the home in the 1890s and added a side addition to serve as an office. His son, Dr. William Rhonehouse, resided there until the 1930s, when Dr. James Schaal took residence.
The exterior façade has remained virtually unchanged.
• First Presbyterian Church, 200 E. Broadway St.:
The chapel, parish house and a new sanctuary were dedicated on May 25, 1969. Plans for the new building began in 1960 as the enrollment of the church membership grew and activities increased.
Several events have taken place throughout the year to mark the church’s 100th anniversary.