LAURINBURG — The halls have been decked and the stockings hung by the chimney in preparation for the 37th annual Junior Service League’s Christmas Tour of Homes.
The tour takes place on Thursday from 4 to 8:30 p.m.
This year’s tour will feature the main building of Scotia Village along with an apartment and home on the grounds.
The retirement community is the first stop on the tour and will also play host to this year’s holiday kitchen. Members of the Junior Service League will have whipped up tasty treats and goodies for purchase during the day on Thursday and during the tour.
Available for purchase this year will be casseroles, soups, cakes and pies. The holiday kitchen will be open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will reopen at 4 p.m. for those participating in the tour.
After visiting the grounds of Scotia Village, the tour will head to the home of Frank Wright Lea III, owner of Lea Contract Drapery Inc, who is showing his home on the tour for the first time since the 1990s.
“My ex-wife and I were on the tour, but after we divorced the house fell into disrepair and I didn’t want people to see the state it was in,” Lea said. “After years of hard work and restoration, I’m ready to welcome people back in for a bit of a history lesson on the pieces I have featured in my home.”
The outside of Lea’s stately Southern charmer features garland strewn between the columns, wreaths on either side of the garland-clad front door and a wreath adorning the portico — which according to Lea was why he purchased the home.
“I just loved the portico, it reminded me of homes in Charleston, S.C.,” he said.
Lea also paid homage to Charleston with the working gas lights that sit on either side of the front door. Stepping into the home, guests are greeted by the formal living and dining rooms.
The home will have minimal Christmas decorations on the interior because Lea wants visitors to learn about the history of the home and the pieces in it. In the dining room, each place setting features china that was hand painted by Lea’s great-great grandmother and silver that was handed down through the generations of his family.
In all of the upstairs guest rooms, guests will note that the blankets on each of the antique beds were hand woven by the women in his family.
Tickets are available at Bob’s Jewel Shop, Harley’s Tuxedo and Gifts, Bill Evans Company, and Haney’s Tire or from any member of Laurinburg Junior Service League. Tickets are $10.
The Junior Service League uses the proceeds to support local charities and scholarships.
“We raise money to give back to charities, scholarships and other organizations in Scotland County that often times get overlooked,” Katherine Campbell, director of this year’s event.
Some of the charities that benefited from last year are: Marie Pate Scholarship, Laurinburg Junior League Scholarship, Diba John Scholarship, Habitat for Humanity, Scotland County Department of Social Services LINKS (Foster Care), Tommy Britt Memorial Scholarship Fund, Humane Society, Domestic Violence and Rape Crisis Center, Scotland County Literacy Council, Project In As Much, Covington School Running Program, Church Community Services, Stop Hunger Now.
“We hope that everyone grabs a ticket and comes out for all the fun and to celebrate Christmas,” Campbell said.
Homes on the tour:
Scotia Village — main building, apartment and a home
2200 Elm Ave. Laurinburg
Mr. Frank Wright Lea III
12121 Rosewood St, Laurinburg
Mr. Eric and Katie Stone
19700 Ida Mill Rd, Laurel Hill
Amber Hatten can be reached at 910-506-3170 or [email protected]