This year, the Geneva Historical Society's Annual Tour of Homes will showcase the early 20th-century houses of Geneva's Castle Heights neighborhood. The homes are representative of those built during the early decades of the century when Americans first became interested in historic architecture. They feature elements revived from historic styles, particularly those of the colonial period. These houses on Castle Street and nearby streets blend gracious and dignified design with modern informality. Seven private residences, the Smith Observatory and Styers Peony Farm will be open for viewing from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, June 12.
Tickets are $10 in advance and are available at the Geneva Historical Society, Rose Hill Mansion, the Geneva Chamber of Commerce, the National Bank of Geneva, and the Finger Lakes area offices of the Community Bank, Seneca Falls Savings Bank, Lyons National Bank and the First Niagara Bank. The day of the tour, tickets will be sold for $12 at the Geneva Historical Society. Each ticket stub may be entered in a drawing to win a $50 gift certificate for Ports Café, 4432 West Lake Road, Geneva. Tickets will also be good for free admission to Rose Hill Mansion
anytime during the 2004 season. The Women of the First Baptist Church will offer a salad buffet lunch from 12:00 noon to 1:30 p.m. at the church, 134 North Main Street. Tickets for lunch are $7.50 and must be purchased by June 11 at the Geneva Historical Society. For more
information, call 315-789-5151.
The Geneva Historical Society Museum is located in the Prouty-Chew House at 543 South Main Street and is open 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Saturday.
This year's tour features the following sites:
169 Maxwell Avenue: Historic English and Italianate features blend in this large-scale cottage embellished with custom furniture and woodworking and featuring a private garden.
85 Maxwell Avenue: A traditional mid-twentieth century Colonial Revival home with a twenty-first century kitchen and an elegantly minimalist décor. 463 Castle Street: A Colonial Revival style home with Newport Cottage-style characteristics on the exterior and an inviting and
499 Castle Street: A Colonial Revival style home with a Mediterranean flavor, appropriate for the owners, former Californians, to retrofit for family life in Geneva.
500 Castle Street: A classic Georgian Revival home with lovely interior details.
534 Castle Street: This Italian villa was built by Smith Brothers Nursery founder Thomas Smith in 1876. Smith's son Theodore and his bride moved into the home in 1891, which is still home to Smith family members.
620 Castle Street: The Smith Observatory. Nurseryman William Smith built this observatory for William Brooks, a professor at Hobart College and noted astronomer. The observatory has been restored by the present owner.
46 Highland Avenue: A Tudoresque-style cottage full of cozy charm, personal flair and vintage accessories.
3212 Sutton Road: Styers Peony Farm. This cut-flower farm is nearly 100 years old. Flowers from the farm are shipped around the nation and the world.