Tour of Homes–Another Great Celebration of VaHi

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by Robin Ragland

What a fabulous weekend we all enjoyed for this year’s Tour of Homes. Incredible weather, beautiful homes, tasty food, and approximately 200 volunteers who pitched in to help make it the most successful Tour to date. The $75,000 in revenue we took in is a 23% increase from last year’s Tour. The Tour’s popularity has grown such that it has raised over $225,000 for the neighborhood over the last four years.

Of course, when you have a successful effort like this, there are a great number people who need to be thanked. First, the homeowners for being hosts and hostesses to us – what’s a home tour without homes? But also SPARK, Grady, and Knock Music for providing holiday music during the event. Then we have our advertising and restaurant sponsors who continue to be so generous each year. Many thanks as well to all who volunteered throughout the weekend and to the House Captains who managed the volunteers in each home.

The Tour of Homes committee works throughout the year in order to organize the Tour. Angelika Taylor and I, as co-chairs, would like to thank them for all their efforts. A special thanks to Angelika Taylor, who has chaired the committee for the last four years. This most successful Tour to date is her last—a wonderful note to end on indeed.

  • Home Selection: Mandi Robertson, Melinda Chandler-Muffley, Bill Bell, Pam Bullock
  • Public Relations: Betsy Riehman Buckley, Hillary Harmon, Emma Cathey, Liz Lapidus
  • Restaurants: Jeanne Drehs, Alison Hutton, JoAnn Zyla
  • Volunteers: Eleanor Barrineau, Karen Murphree
  • Collateral: Ashleigh Bryan, Chelsie Jordan Coker
  • Graphic Design: Lori Zurkuhlen
  • Website: Centner Consulting
  • Ticket Sales: Arturo Cruz-Tucker
  • Signage and Flocking: Holle Gilbert, Samantha Costello, Patti Hinkle

Successful new additions to the Tour

This year we added a couple of new aspects to the Tour: a History Tour and transportation shuttles. Many thanks to Lola Carlisle for creating our tour route and brochure, and to Kari Hobson-Pape, Raymond Keene, and Lola for contributing as docents for the tours. The History Tour was a huge success, and plans are already in place to repeat it next year with focus being on another area in our wonderful neighborhood.

As a fundraising committee, we focus not only on generating high proceeds, but also on creating a Tour at the lowest expense possible.

One of our biggest expenses is printing our lovely Tour booklets. This year, we included a ‘donate back’ program for volunteers to help offset some of this expense. By donating back one or both of their complimentary booklets, we were able to reduce the number printed. The money saved from printing will be earmarked for the Fire Station 19 restoration and John Howell Park improvements. Thanks to the following folks: Steve Voichick, Pat Lamar, Beth Walter, John Craft, Dale Robbins, Shelley Sexton, Mary Hallenberg, Emily Malkin, Claire Segar, Donna Stevenson, Paige Hewell, Kathy McGraw, Connie Ward-Cameron, Mandy Holton Brooks, Bruce Gunter, Abby Martin, Steve Saunders, Nancy Safay, Howard Kaufman, Emily Gilbert, Paige Follmann, Lauren Boudreau, Renay Thomas, Matt Killeen, Sarah Tomaka, Lisa Fish, John Wolfinger, Michael Fischer, Mike Kondalski, Karen Murphree, Eleanor Barrineau, Stephen Cohen, Juliet White, Arturo Cruz, Lori Zurkuhlen, Charles Harper, and Lola Carlisle.

Looking ahead to the 2016 Tour of Homes

If you really enjoyed the Tour this year, or would like to be part of an effort that raises needed funding for our neighborhood, you may want to note that our 22nd Tour will be on December 3-4, 2016. We’d love to have you join our Tour of Homes team! Contact Robin Ragland at if you have an interest.

Robin Ragland is a VHCA Board Member and Co-Chair of the Tour of Homes Committee.

Photos by Stephen Cohen and Lola Carlisle

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