// by Serenity Hansberry
The First Coast is rich with beautiful homes. That is especially so in the Riverside and Avondale area. For over four decades Riverside Avondale Preservation Inc. has hosted tours that celebrate these historical gems. The next tour, the 42nd annual Riverside Avondale Tour of Homes begins Saturday, April 16 from 10 AM-5 PM, and runs until Sunday, April 17 from 12 PM-5 PM.
The tour which is sponsored by St. Vincent’s Medical Center, 121 Financial, and Bloom Realty, will feature 10 homes. Addresses include
3867 Arden Street (Art and Craftsman House)
1918 Morningside Street (Designer Dream House / Preview Party)
1980 Greenwood Ave.
1424 Edgewood Cir.
1472 Edgewood Cir.
1303 Belvedere Ave.
2767 Herschel St.
2227 Herschel St.
2165 Oak St.
2115 Forbes St.
2038 Gilmore St.
1635 Riverside Ave.
A preview party will be held Thursday, April 14, 7PM-10PM, at the 2016 Designer Dream House home (1918 Morningside St.). Party goers will be able to enjoy catered food provided by Biscottis, The Chef’s Garden Catering and Events, and Catering by Liz Grenamyer. Wine and spirits will be provided by Bold City Brewery, Riverside Liquors, and Glenmorangie.
There will be a chance to get a sneak peek of creations showcased by featured designers, reservation of specialty items, and you can meet the tour homeowners. Live music will be performed by The House Cats.
A best dressed of the evening contest will be held, and will be judged by Fashion Stylist Fitz Pullins. The winner will receive a FREE one night stay at the Ritz Carlton in Amelia Island. Door prizes will also be available, as well as $25 gift certificates to Coast, a casual dining restaurant located in the Ritz Carlton in Amelia Island.
Admission is $75. Tickets can be purchased online.
In conjunction with the tour, there will also be a Art House and Craftsman Showcase home (3867 Arden St.) where visitors will be able to learn about the intricate details of the home, as well as meet a local craftsman who will be answering questions and sharing ideas for projects for your own home.
The 2016 Designer Dream House has a number of features in the home including a dock that runs through a marsh which leads to Big Fishweir Creek. On Monday, April 18 from 9AM-1PM, the Designer After Tour Sale will take place in the Designer Dream House, and visitors will be able to purchase items available for sale from various designers including C&K Designs from Charles M. Gardner and Kyle M. Williams Design Chairs, Rave Reviews Home Staging, from Melissa Marro, and Posh Home Designs, from Melanie and Paul Harley.
For the garden lovers, the Outdoor Spaces events will be held on Saturday, April 16. The Ixia Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society will host a tour of Native Park (3312 Park St.) from 10AM-3PM. There will also be a native plant sale held during those hours.
The Riverside Community Garden (2840 Park St.) will also be available for viewing. A ceremonial ribbon cutting will take place at 1PM. There will be seed planting for children that they can take home, and a coloring contest will be held and winners will be announced best by age.
Finally, there will be a Bike Tour led by local historian Jean Grimsley of Riverside Avondale Preservation. The tour will begin Saturday, April 16 at 10AM, and will depart from City Cycle (2740 Park St.) The tour will go by the homes featured on the tour and will highlight some historical landmarks. There is no charge to travel the Bike Tour, however, you will need tickets to enter the homes featured on the tour.
An antique automobile display will be available during the tour, located outside of the featured homes. The Home Tour Store will be set up at the Riverside Avondale Preservation headquarters (2623 Herschel St.) featuring, local art, jewelry, food, and more.
Tickets are $25. Tickets purchased before April 8 are $5 off. Riverside Avondale Preservation members with a valid member card will receive an additional $5 off. The cost is FREE for children 12 and under. Strollers are prohibited. Tour patrons are encouraged to wear comfortable shoes for walking.
Tickets are available online or may be purchased in person at the following locations
- Design Additions (3569 St. Johns Ave.)
- Berkshire Hathaway (Temporary Address: 3563 St. Johns Ave.)
- Phillips Garden Store (4234 Herschel St.)
- Watson Realty Office (4194 San Juan Ave.)
- 5 Points Vintage (1046 Park St.)
- Brew Five Points (1024 Park St.)
- Riverside Arts Market, near Market entrance (715 Riverside Ave.), Saturdays only
Park & King:
- Southern Crossing Antique Mall (2718 Park St.)
- Riverside Liquors (1251 King St.)
- Home Tour headquarters (2623 Herschel St.), Beginning In April, Tuesday – Friday 10AM-2PM and by appointment.
- Bold Bean Coffee Roasters (869 Stockton St.)
- Bold Bean Coffee Roasters (1179 Edgewood Ave. S.)
- Linen & Rust (2170 Park Ave.)
Ponte Vedra Beach
- Mineral City (240 Florida A1A, Palm Valley)