Commonwealth Journal

November 30, 2013

Burnside Holiday Home Tour next weekend

by Chris Harris
Commonwealth Journal

Somerset —

One of the oldest and most unique houses in Pulaski County, pictured above, will be included on this year’s Holiday Home Tour, an event that’s becoming a favorite tradition this time of year in Pulaski County.
Sponsored by the Burnside Women’s Civic Club, the annual Holiday Home Tour has been going on for around 40 years now, and has expanded beyond Burnside’s boundaries.
For $10, tourgoers can visit six different houses on the route and take in the beautiful festive decorations both outside and inside, taking a peek behind the doors of these lovely domiciles.
“We have an selection, going from the more modern homes to older homes,” said Vivian Sullivan, the Civic Club’s president. “... It’s a beautiful display this year.”
The homes on the tour include those of:
Phyllis Branham, at 375 HiddenCrest Drive, South Ridge Subdivision;
Donald and Janet Hevener, across from Lakeshore Pharmacy in Burnside on Lakeshore Drive;
Jeff and Tammy Hoehler, at 132 Graysons Way, Shadow Oak Subdivision;
Russell and Michelle Jones, at 163 West French Avenue in Burnside;
Ron and Kathy Prichard, 305 Old Monticello Road;
Wanda Worley, 475 West Lakeshore Drive, overlooking Burnside Marina.
The Prichard home is one that tour organizers expect that participants will find particularly unique. An ante-bellum mansion, built c. 1820 by Dr. Samuel Owens, it was used as a hospital in the Civil War after Owens enlisted. General Ambrose Burnside (from whom the town gets its name) utilized the location during the war, as did General Felix Zollicoffer, known for his role in the Battle of Mill Springs.
According to the house’s owners, the uncle of beloved America author Mark Twain owned the house at one time, and Twain (a.k.a. Samuel Clemens) himself came here to grieve following the death of his father as a young boy. The house has been used as a post office, a speakeasy, a brothel, and as the old Prather farm over its lifespan, making it a one-of-a-kind piece of Pulaski County history.
The tour benefits a good cause as always: the Louise Kiser Memorial College Scholarship Fund. All proceeds raised provide money for a local student enrolled in college to have their tuition paid for a college semester.
Students must be local (or in the area with a Pulaski County connection), and have been enrolled in college for at least one year already. A student will be chosen by the club based on available criteria to qualify for the scholarship.
“Depending on how much money the hours to brings in, we could be giving one or more scholarships,” said Civic Club member Lula Jean Burton. “It’s a very important cause.”
Those whose homes are included on the tour are brought into the fold by invitation from the club. Burton noted that often, homeowners have been on the tour in the past themselves, and have been inspired by seeing the beautiful houses of their neighbors.
Also, “they do it for the good cause,” said Burton. “They want to help out. They want to be a part of a good service project.”
The tour will be on Sunday, December 8, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Cost is $10; only one ticket is needed for viewing of all six homes.
A ticket can be purchased from any of the Burnside Women’s Civic Club members or at any of the homes on the tour.
For more information, contact: Vivian Sullivan at 606-561-5213 or Lula Jean Burton at 606-875-2343.
Burton expects the Burnside Women’s Civic Club Holiday Home Tour to once again help usher in this special season in style.
“I think (people) will love it,” she said. “It’s so different and unique.”