Marion home tour is library fundraiser

Marion City Library is sponsoring its annual Christmas Home Tour from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 28, featuring four local homes, a church and then the library for refreshments.

In keeping with the theme, ?Candy Cane Christmas,? the library will use red and white decorations, candy canes and have a small village on display, said to Janet Marler, director.

?We will also have recipes available for some of the refreshments served,? she said. ?(The library) is always a wonderful place to visit, but especially during Christmas.?

The four homes and owners on the tour are Jerome and Donna Hajek at 320 N. Freeborn, Mark and Lisa Johnson, 2175 U.S. Highway 56, Andy and Staci Hansen, 1842 Quail Creek and Mike and Kathy Ehrlich, 2096 Sunrise.

Valley Methodist Church, 300 E. Santa Fe, is also part of this year?s event.

Each location will offer visitors a unique holiday experience, according to Marler.

Mark and Lisa Johnson

The Johnsons have combined a western mix with Victorian charm.

?We live in a secluded rustic home that is not visible from the highway,? Lisa Johnson said.

Guests will see seasonal decorations inside and outside.

?We have two Christmas trees,? she said. ?One is upstairs and one downstairs, but we are going all out this year.?

One of the trees will carry a western and hunting theme. The other tree will be a mixture of tea cups that were purchased with China place settings for their daughter?s reception.

The Johnsons have a western decor throughout their home.

?We have a display of cowboy hat box, cowboy boots, coat rack and a hat and spurs that belonged to my grandfather,? she said. ?Antiques and family heirlooms are important to us.?

Jerome and Donna Hajek

The Hajeks enjoy collecting. Visitors to their home will be able to view a rhinestone jewelry collection, pixies, glass candle holders and more. They also have a display of wooden Santa spindles made for them by Donna?s sister, Elaine Ewert.

In addition to those collectibles, the Hajeks have an outdoor caroler display, which was made for them by Donna?s grandfather, Glenn Kline, in the late 1950s.

?Our home is a collection of family treasures and pictures,? she said.

Andy and Staci Hansen

The Hansens are looking forward to opening their home to tour visitors on.

?In our main living room,? Staci Hansen said, ?the tree will be Victorian with a contemporary flare.?

In the basement, they have a hunting theme, and the guest suite offers a family theme.

?In our guest suite, we have collections of our family history,? she said. The collections include her mother?s wedding dress and her husband has the winner?s blanket awarded to his great-grandfather?s horse, ?Sergeant Ben,? at the Aksar?ben, Omaha, Neb., in the 1950s.

Their daughter also collects Precious Moment figurines, which she has been receiving from her grandmother each birthday.

Mike and Kathy Ehrlich

Kathy Ehrlich said she has always loved snowmen.

?I started collecting them when my grandmother gave me a stuffed snowman when I was little,? she said.

After receiving her first snowman, she has been adding to it over the years. On display for the home tour, Kathy will have more than 100 snowman pieces, including wall hangings, ceramic, stuffed and paintings.

?Many of the snowmen were given to me as gifts,? she said. ?Some were homemade. They all have a special meaning to me.?

Christmas village

Mary Jeffrey?s Christmas Village Scene will be set up at Valley United Methodist Church.

?I started collecting the village when my grandson, Clinton, was about 2 or 3 years old, which would be about 20 years ago now,? she said.

The collection started with a small church and a schoolhouse followed the next year, she said. Jeffrey has more than 75 large pieces and the number rises rapidly.

Setting up the village is time-consuming, but she said it?s always a joyful time.

?One of my nieces from Florida makes the trip in November to help me set it up,? she said. ?Others helping include my sister, my children, my grandchildren and other from Valley (United Methodist).?

From start to finish, she said, the village takes about 40 hours. Each year, the village changes.

?There is no set way to arrange it,? she said. ?It always includes the ocean, the downtown area, the medical park, the rural area (with wildlife), the education campus, a residential area and Central Park.?

Ticket information

Marler said the home tour is the library?s major fundraising event to help with programs and other expenses.

?We hope everyone will join us for a wonderful afternoon of Christmas delights,? she said.

Tickets may be purchased the day of the tour at individual homes or at the library.

For more information, call the library at 620-382-2442 or stop by at 101 Library St. The e-mail address is: mlibrary at eaglecom.net.

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