St. Francisville’s Tour of Homes, part of the Christmas in the Country festival, is Dec. 6.
The Friends of the West Feliciana Parish Library, which hosts the annual tour, moved the event to Saturday to accommodate the town’s annual Christmas parade scheduled for 2 p.m. Dec. 7, said Pat Heurtin, Tour of Homes chairperson.
Prior to the tour, a Jazz Brunch at the Bluffs will be at 11 a.m. at The Bluffs Golf Resort Clubhouse, 14233 Sunrise Way.
Following brunch, the Bells of Christmas boutique, a seasonal pop-up shop, will feature work of local artists and artisans.
According to Julie Dreher, boutique chairperson, the Bells of Christmas will feature items unique to the area.
Heurtin notes the brunch is not included in the Tour of Homes, and those interested should contact the Bluffs for reservations. The four homes featured on this year’s tour open to the community at noon and will remain open until 5 p.m.
“These homes are truly unique and awe-inspiring, each for very different reasons,” Heurtin said.
Tickets for Tour of Homes are $20 in advance and $25 the day of the event and can be purchased at Grandmother’s Buttons, Ma Milles Gift Shop, South of the Border and the WFP Library, 5114 Burnett Road, as well as online at wftourofhomes.bpt.me or from members of the Friends of the West Feliciana Parish Library.
Tickets will also be available Dec. 6 at The Bluffs or at homes featured on the tour. Proceeds benefit Friends of the West Feliciana Parish Library.
For information, contact Pat Heurtin at (225) 784-2731 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Carter home
The home of Kenneth and Gwen “Gigi” Carter, 14026 Dogwood Trace in The Bluffs, sits on about 11 acres of rolling terrain near 500 feet of waterfront.
Built in 1999 by P.A. Cherry, architect and contractor, the home stands on 13 24-inch diameter masonry piers, some of which are several feet above the ground.
The West home
The home of Jerry and Ouida West, 5709 Laurel Hill Lane in The Bluffs, was designed by John Guillory and built by Randy Brian.
The house is a handicap-accessible, two-bedroom retirement home that was completed in 2006.
The home features pine floors and beams, cypress cabinets, brick walls and brushed granite, which highlights the open floor plan. The West home has wide doorways, a ramp in the garage and a drive-in shower in the master bath, making the residence elderly friendly.
“We both knew that we didn’t wish to move again, so we wanted our final home to be comfortable and senior friendly,” said Ouida West.
The Daniel home
Bobby and Jane Smith Daniel’s 1967 colonial revival brick house, appropriately named Jacko, is at 8053 Jacko Road.
The home was built by Jane’s parents, Lt. Col. and Mrs. Jefferson Smith, on their inherited portion of Solitude Plantation, which was established by ancestors under a Spanish land grant, according to the Daniels.
“During the 1950s, my parents were stationed in Japan with the U.S. Marine Corps, and my mother was able to shop for rugs and furnishings in British Hong Kong as well as Japan. The rugs and many pieces of furniture she had made by Asian artisans are still at Jacko,” said Jane Daniel.
R.T. Holmes was the architect, and French-speaking Leon Lemoine was the contractor.
Constructed in Louisiana tradition, Jacko features a long gallery across its front that is perfect for morning coffee or afternoon refreshments, the Daniels said.
The Didier home
In 1999, Belton and Dare Didier purchased 80 acres of property at 5710 U.S. 61 that they worked over the years to turn into their dream home.
“We knew someday we wanted to build our dream home,” Dare Didier said. “Even though we weren’t sure exactly what that was at the time, we began collecting old bricks, planks of dirty top beams, pine flooring and other features for the home.”
The Didier property includes a bridge, ponds, roads, barns, a guest apartment in a barn and a pavilion. Construction began in 2010 with Belton acting as general contractor.
The home’s exterior is a replica of Twin Oaks in Natchez, including tablatures, railing, moldings, troweling of the stone, doors and windows.