Wow – what an incredible Tour of Homes weekend in Virginia Highland! I can’t begin to tell you how many personal emails I‘ve received about the homes, food tastings and neighborhood from last weekend. So many people praising our event from the pre-tour advertisement “buzz” and smooth transactions at ticket check-in to the amazing food samplings and hard working volunteers. Our streets were alive and the stores jam-packed. Tour goers enjoyed live, traditional holiday caroling as the Grady High School chorus entertained at the homes and at the North Highland/Virginia Ave. intersection.
And this year’s tour really delivered! The tour committee wants to sincerely thank the generous homeowners who allowed more than 1,600 tour-goers to view their incredible homes. The committee also wants to thank the fabulous restaurants, sponsors and the many volunteers for their hard work and support this year. There’s no way we could have made this tour happen without all of you.
One of my favorite sayings is “Go Big or Go Home” and this year’s tour did just that…we killed it! By any measure, this year’s tour was a success. Close to 1,100 tickets were sold and, combined with sponsor revenue, the tour generated more than $36,000 for our neighborhood (a $3,000 increase over last year)! Pre-sale of tickets – both online and through our in-town locations – was strong, a direct result of promoting the event through our incredible website and Voice newsletter, the new banners we placed around the neighborhood and the local shops that displayed our signage, blogger support, promoting our event through Facebook and other social media, and, of course, the generous support of our sponsors and vendors.
As was the case with Summerfest in June, Mother Nature played a big role in ensuring our event’s success. With warm temperatures and no rain, attendance both days was very strong.
What does this really mean to us all? It means we raised money for the community we all take so much pride in – money that will directly impact each and every one of us. These funds go toward support of our parks, sidewalk repairs, safety, streetlights, landscaping and many other community projects that pop up throughout the year.
Let me share a quick story with you. On Saturday evening (after Day One of the tour) my hubby and I snuck in a quick dinner at Murphy’s. As always, the restaurant was packed. I talked to people at the tables around us, many of whom were from outlying areas and had come to VaHi to make a day of it. They “Toured, Ate and Shopped,” just as we had hoped they would. Most had had such a great time that they were ready to pack up and move to here! They loved our quaint village, the fact that everyone took pride in the community and that we can walk everywhere here and that the neighborhood seemed so health-conscious. My response to them was that these are precisely the reasons why most residents choose to call Virginia-Highland home.
In closing, I couldn’t be more proud of the many TOH committee members who went above and beyond to make this tour an incredible success. It was a pleasure working with everyone and we’ve already begun discussing next year’s tour while our energy level is high. If there’s any feedback about the tour that you’d like to share with us, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, if you weren’t a sponsor for this year’s tour but would like to consider it for next year, please let us know.
Happy Holidays to everyone who attended this year’s tour or helped make it a success. I sincerely hope you enjoy this special time of year with your family and friends.
– Angelika Taylor, 2012 Tour of Homes Chair