Homeowners prepare for Sunday

By Messenger Staff | Published Saturday, December 1, 2012

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The Decatur Women’s Club Tour of Homes is 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, and tickets are still available. Cost is $15, and they can be purchased from a club member, at iCopy in Decatur or at Patti’s Hair Parlor & Etc. On Sunday, tickets can be purchased at any of the homes.

Ticketholders will tour the homes of John and Candy Burden, 830 Cemetery Rd.; James and Shirley Wood, 2097 Preskitt Rd.; Andrew Rottner and Kelli Pyland, 381 PR 3248; Mike and Dallas Blankenship, 115 CR 2112; Scott and Wanda Aurandt, 1001 S. College; and Courthouse Suites Bed and Breakfast, 103B Main St.

The midweek Messenger featured the Burden, Wood and Rottner homes, and below are features on the Blankenship and Aurandt homes, as well as the bed and breakfast.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS – Dallas Blankenship decorated the kitchen and dining area of her home in an “I Love Lucy” theme. The pictured table is set with hand-painted Franciscan Ivy china. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

115 CR 2112

The Blankenship home, built in 2002, is two-story and melds traditional, contemporary and country-style architecture. The exterior features stained concrete wood shutters and a 60-foot back porch that overlooks the family’s pool and pond.

The 4,800-square-foot home has an open floor plan with stamped concrete floors and custom wood cabinets. There are four bedrooms, two-and-a-half baths, an upstairs family room, plus an unfinished mother-in-law suite above the garage.

Mike and Dallas have lived in the home for 10 years with their daughter, Faith, dog Fabian and three cats.

Dallas said they want visitors to feel they can “sit and stay awhile.”

“I want people to feel warm and comfortable and enjoy the true spirit of Christmas when they visit,” she said. “I don’t follow the pretentious design style taught in school when it comes to Christmas.”

She decorated the home herself and also made a point to include her family in design decisions. She’s decorated various trees for Faith, even making the ornaments, and this year her room will feature a Paris/Leonardo DiCaprio-themed tree.

“I want warm and comfortable, not stuffy,” she said, “and I want my family to feel a part of the decorating.”

The kitchen and dining area is decorated with vintage “I Love Lucy” items. The table is set with hand-painted Franciscan Ivy china and the room features an “I Love Lucy” tree, plus a custom-built 1950s style TV.

Dallas said every room has a different theme, so the d cor will appeal to various tastes. She prefers “casual and creative over costly. Fun, not fancy.”

Outdoor decorations are whimsical with a hint of Santa’s workshop.

CORNER MANSION – Scott and Wanda Aurandt have owned the 99-year-old Hoyle house since 1986. Messenger photo by Joe Duty


Arthur C. Hoyle built the 4,000-square-foot Greek revival style house that Scott and Wanda Aurandt call home. The Aurandts have owned the 99-year-old house since 1986.

The four-bedroom, two-bath house features five fireplaces. Upon entering the home, guests see a formal living room and music room divided with grand pillars, and there is an open passage into the formal dining room that continues through a swinging door into the butler’s pantry, which is made of cherry and mahogany and stained glass.

Upstairs an anteroom, three bedrooms and a bathroom are all connected and accessible without going into the hall. The home also boasts a library, mudroom and sunroom.

The Aurandts noted that they were married in the home, which is currently for sale.

STAY AWHILE – The City Slicker Suite at Courthouse Suites Bed and Breakfast features rustic, western decor giving it the feel of a bunkhouse. Messenger photo by Joe Duty


The Courthouse Suites Bed and Breakfast is slated to open in early 2013. Formerly home to Abbercromby Bed & Breakfast, the building was purchased and remodeled by Mark Moran this year.

The B&B features three suites, each with a kitchenette, service for four, a microwave and refrigerator. Every suite is distinctly decorated and features luxurious amenities such as fine linens and plush robes.

The City Slicker Suite is rustic, decorated with barn wood and western furnishings. It will give city folks a taste of ranch life without having to saddle a horse or work cattle. It has a queen-size bed, plus a loft that sleeps two.

The spacious Honeymoon Suite features a king-size bed and jacuzzi tub. In addition to the bedroom and bathroom, guests will enjoy a sitting area with a leather settee and large, flat-screen TV.

The Dean Martin Suite, the largest of the three, is at the front of the building, and guests will enjoy a beautiful view of the Courthouse Square. It features sleek, sophisticated d cor with an eye-catching, funky chandelier. The kitchenette is separate from the bedroom in this suite, and it also features a large sitting area and a loft with a twin bed.

Frieda Hanley and Dana Clinesmith will operate the B&B, and Clinesmith said guests will discover unique amenities in their room upon check-in that were chosen specifically to enhance their visit.

All guests have access to a washer and dryer, dishwasher, icemaker and central supply area. Clinesmith said a website is under construction, and once it is completed, reservations can be made online. After it opens, the phone number will be (940) 627-7005.


Don’t feel like driving or looking for a place to park at each home?

Ride the TAPS bus. For an additional $10, you and your friends can ride one of four buses to each of the stops on the tour. Riders will be picked up at Patti’s Hair Parlor, 103 S. Washburn St., at 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

Reserve a seat or space for your group by calling Patti’s at (940) 627-1002 by 5 p.m. Saturday.

Businesses on the Square are also offering special promotions and discounts to tour ticketholders 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday.

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