Tour of Homes raises money for community

 Kay and Eddie Martin’s home features a collection of nativity scenes from around the world. (Submitted photo)
Staff Writer

With the holiday season in full swing, the 2017 Starkville Christmas Tour of Homes on Sunday, presented by the Starkville Civic League, continues to spread holiday spirit and raise money for the community.

This year, three Starkville homes will participate in the annual event that began in 2004.

An ongoing reception will begin at 1 p.m. until 4:30 p.m. Sunday at the Starkville Public Library, where tickets for the Tour of Homes can be purchased for $20. Maps of the homes are on the back of each ticket.

Starkville Civic League Vice President and chairperson of Tour of Homes Chris Emplaincourt said Tour of Homes is the only fundraiser the Starkville Civic League hosts each year, and all the money raised is given back to the community.

“We look to the needs of the community,” Emplaincourt said.

The Starkville Civic League funds a scholarship each year, and in the past they have donated a statue and tables to the Starkville Public Library and money to county and city law enforcement.

Kay and Eddie Martin’s home in the Browning Creek neighborhood is one of the three homes in this year’s Tour of Homes. Kay said her home features her collection of nativity scenes the she and her friends and family collected from mission trips across the world, including Honduras, Kenya and Bethlehem.

Kay said she also used Christmas villages, poinsettias and her collection of churches do decorate her home for Christmas.

The Martins are new to Starkville, Kay said, and they wanted to participate in the Tour of Homes to meet new people after encouragement from family and friends.

Lisa and Charlie Thomas’s Mediterranean-style home, also in Browning Creek, incorporated their family’s love of hunting and the outdoors into their Christmas decorations.

“We’re a big hunting and outdoor family,” Lisa said. “So the decorations go along with that.”

Lisa said went with a natural theme by using fresh cedar and magnolia greenery, pine cones and red and gold pops of color.

“Being in the Tour of Homes this year is a great way to spread holiday cheer,” Lisa said.

Marilyn and Larry Tabor decorated their home in Country Club Estates for the Tour of Homes with white snowflakes, flowers and wreaths to go along with the light and airy floor plan of their home, along with Christmas ornaments on the tree they’ve collected throughout the years.

Marilyn said she and her husband have only been living in their new home for around three weeks, and she had many friends and family encourage them to participate in the Tour of Homes so they could come see the new house.

“This way, anyone who wants to can come tour it,” Marilyn said.