LHWL’s Carrie Denson, Tricia White, Allison Brown and Carolyn Brunkenhoefer

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Lake Highlands Women’s League home tour chairmen Carolyn Brunkenhoefer and Carrie Denson haven’t finished counting proceeds from Friday’s fundraiser, but they can already tell they’ll have beaucoup bucks for neighborhood schools, community charities and college scholarships. Ticket sales were brisk after a year off for COVID-19, and visitors waited happily in line to enter the decorated homes.

“People haven’t had festivities or events to go to for a while, and they were ready for normalcy,” said Denson. “People want to enjoy the season and attend Christmas events, and that’s why our numbers were way up this year.”

The planning committee normally begins preparing in December for the following year’s tour, but this year they had to wait and see if the decades-long tradition would take place at all.

“We didn’t really get started until March, when vaccinations were underway and we knew that visitors could go into people’s homes,” said Denson. “Once we had a remedy for the problem of COVID, we knew we could take steps to make it happen.”

When selecting the four houses to feature at Holiday in the Highlands, planners are careful to find both large and moderate-sized houses with a mix of modern and traditional styles. They recruit some homes with new construction and some with a storied history, and they seek to include addresses on both the Forest Meadow and Lake Highlands Junior High sides of town.

“We’re always looking for variety,” explained Brunkenhoefer, “variety of location, variety of styles, variety in the age of the homes. It’s like putting a puzzle together. People enjoy getting ideas from our talented homeowners and we want to offer a little of everything.”

This year, especially, spending time with neighbors on the tour, in the market and at the luncheon was a big part of the draw.

“What I most enjoy most is talking to all the friends I haven’t seen in a while,” said Denson. “This year, I loved slipping into the tour and hearing what visitors had to say about each room. It was fun to hear the lovely things visitors had to say about the houses.”

It’s not too late to become a LHWL sponsor. You may donate online here. You may check out my photos here.