Walking in a Zonta wonderland

UPDATE POSTED ON THE  ZONTA CLUB OF MIDLAND'S FACEBOOK PAGE

The Zonta Club of Midland has come to the difficult decision to proceed with a virtual Homewalk only and cancel the in-person tours. We make this decision out of an abundance of caution and concern for the health of our homeowners, volunteers, and guests. Many of our volunteers have had to cancel because of COVID-19 exposures.

Ticket holders can enjoy all five spectacular homeowner led tours from the comforts of home and at their own pace from December 4th through the 31st. Videos can be watched as many times as you like so break out the popcorn and beverage of choice and enjoy! Access the virtual tours at http://www.zontaclubofmidland.org/homewalk.html starting Saturday!


ORIGINAL ARTICLE

‘Tis the season for walking in a winter wonderland. This year marks the 40th Zonta Homewalk, a local self-paced tour of beautiful homes with intricate holiday decor. The event, which takes place on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 4-5 from 1-5 p.m. is a fundraiser for the Zonta Club of Midland.

Zonta Club members greet their guests on the Homewalk.The Club has given out over $265,000 in scholarships for non-traditional and returning students. Cindy Vickery, Zonta Club of Midland Homewalk chair, says the club was founded in 1947 with the goal of empowering girls and women. “We really work towards improving the lives of women locally and globally through education, advocacy and service.” 

Over the years, the Homewalk event has become a tradition for many families. Some groups even rent a bus and make a day of it by eating and drinking locally, too.

“We have about 600-750 people tour each home over the two-day event,” says Vickery. “The first event took place in 1981, and it has become a premier event on many families’ holiday calendars.”

This year’s tour includes five homes of different styles ranging from architectural standouts, mid-century modern homes, and festive holiday decor.

“It’s totally up to you on which house you go to first; it is self-paced,” says Vickery. “We have people in the homes to guide you through the home. There’s no touching of anything, but you’re welcome to look through the decorations and architecture. We’ll have information on history, key things in the home. New this year, we also have virtual tours.”

Advance tickets are $20 and $25 at the door at Primrose. Tickets are available online and at select retail ticket locations. Tickets include both in-person and virtual tour options, which can be viewed until Dec. 31. Masks are required for in-person tours. Tours typically take around two hours, and this year, the destinations are clustered closely, with no more than a 10-minute drive in between. The tour includes a rest-stop at Primrose with food, beverages, and auction items on display.

You'll find sweet offerings on the Zonta Homewalk.Vickery says curating the home lineup happens a few different ways. “This year, we actually had a couple homeowners come to us. They had an interest in being on a tour, because they know the tours. One of our homes was one of the original homes on the first Homewalk in 1981.”

This year’s annual event features a ‘big get’ for Homewalk — one the organization has been trying to get on the tour for many years. 

“The biggest draw on this [Old Pine Trail] home is their Dickens Village. The homeowner has a 200+ building setup. It goes over three or four rooms in the house. They don’t put it up every year, because it takes a month to put it up. This year, they said yes. It’s really special; it’s the one to see. You can’t see it all on the video, there’s just so much there.”

Read more articles by Sarah Spohn.

Sarah Spohn is a Lansing native, but every day finds a new interesting person, place, or thing in towns all over Michigan, leaving her truly smitten with the mitten. She received her degrees in journalism and professional communications and provides coverage for various publications locally, regionally, and nationally — writing stories on small businesses, arts and culture, dining, community, and anything Michigan-made. You can find her in a record shop, a local concert, or eating one too many desserts at a bakery. If by chance, she’s not at any of those places, you can contact her at sarahspohn.news@gmail.com.