Holiday House Tour Call for Advertisers

HHT Wreath and CandleIt’s that time again! PHW is at work on lining up sponsors for our 2017 Holiday House Tour. For many of us this event officially begins the holiday season with its guided tours of the festively decorated historic properties in Winchester. In addition to being a fun community tradition, the Holiday House Tour generates the monetary foundation that enables us to continue our mission to preserve the best of the area’s past.

House Tour Ad Size SheetAs part of our promotional materials for the event, PHW will be producing a full color program booklet again this year. I invite you to place an ad in the booklet to show your support for PHW and to promote your business to a demographic interested in Old Town Winchester, its history, and its architecture. Ads are available in full page (5″x8″), half page (5″x4″), and business card (2″x3.5″) sizes. Enlarging the image shows the sizes, costs, and benefits of the sponsors’ ads in the program.

Please reserve your spot soon – ads are due by 5 PM on October 31 to ensure inclusion in the program booklet, which will be distributed in mid-November to ticket sale locations and local visitor centers around Winchester. Include your business name, contact information, and ad size in your reservation. Your print-ready digital ad files may be emailed to or submitted on CD or flash drive at the PHW Office, 530 Amherst Street, Winchester, VA 22601. If you have questions, do not hesitate to email us or call us at 540-667-3577.

Thank you for your support, and we hope to see you at our 41st Holiday House Tour this December 2 and 3!

Friday Photos: Bough & Dough Shop 1996

Happy Friday! As unbelievable as it may seem, we are already starting work on Holiday House Tour and Bough & Dough Shop 2017. Mark your calendars now for the weekend of December 2 and 3!

We also heard your feedback about increasing the variety of vendors at the Shop in 2017. We are asking that new artisans interested in participating in the Shop for 2017 fill out a short form so that the Shop committee can jury new participants. Take your time with your submissions – we will accept applications through June 30, 2017.

To get your creative juices flowing, for Friday Photos this week we are revisiting the 1996 Bough & Dough Shop, which was held at the Winchester Rehabilitation Center at 333 W. Cork Street. This is one of the few years the Shop submitted a detailed report on what worked and what didn’t. This year was the first time we used a computerized cash register and vendor numbers during checkout. Despite a number of last minute no shows, the 1996 Shop had 25 vendors, plus the separate greenery and donated baked goods. The event was pulled together by Robin Sutton, Jenny Powers, Kim Dodd, Courtney Bragg, Julian Bragg, Rick Bragg, Aimee Kennedy, and Peggy Sweeney. Enjoy this stroll down a Christmas memory lane in 34 photos at Flickr!

Bough & Dough Shop 1996

Holiday House Tour Leftovers

As is usual after Holiday House Tour, a few lost items have been turned in to the PHW Office and have not yet been claimed. If you are missing a hat or a car alarm key fob, we may have them! Let us know at 540-667-3577 or and we can reunite you.

We were remiss in not thanking some of the volunteers who stepped up over the fall and collected shopping bags and newspapers for PHW to use at the Bough and Dough Shop. As best we can determine, we used the equivalent of a 39 gallon trash bag’s worth of donated plastic grocery bags, and probably close to that amount of paper bags and newspaper bits to pack items. The unused newspapers were recycled, and the leftover bags have been saved for next year. Thank you so much for your donations – we will do it again next fall!

Also, if you have not done so already, we are still seeking your anonymous feedback from the 2016 Holiday House Tour to be discussed at our January 9 meeting. Take the survey now! All feedback, good and bad, is helpful for us to see where we can improve the Tour and Shop.

2016 Holiday House Tour Feedback Wanted!

Santa's ListDid you attend the Holiday House Tour and/or Bough & Dough Shop this year? We’d like your feedback for future planning! Please take a few moments to answer a ten question survey at Survey Monkey. It should take you about fifteen minutes maximum and the anonymous responses will be discussed as part of our event wrap up meeting in early January.

Take the survey now! Thank you all for your time and interest in improving the Holiday House Tour!

Holiday House Tour 2016 Final Notes

HHT Wreath and Candle As we near the last hours before the 40th annual Holiday House Tour kicks off, here are a couple things to keep in mind:

Tickets are still available at the advance ticket sale locations:

Kimberly’s, 135 North Braddock Street
Wilkins’ Shoe Center, 7 South Loudoun Street
Winchester Book Gallery, 185 North Loudoun Street
Winchester-Frederick County Visitors Center, 1400 South Pleasant Valley Road

Tickets will also be available at the Bough & Dough Shop on December 3 and 4.

Admission to a single site on Sunday is $5. Pay at the door of the house you wish to visit.

If you have questions, the best place to find someone well-versed on the House Tour Saturday and Sunday is the Bough & Dough Shop at the Winchester Little Theatre, 315 W. Boscawen St. The Shop is open Saturday 9 AM-5 PM and on Sunday 11 AM-5 PM.

The normal PHW phone number (540-667-3577) and email ( will not be staffed from Friday-Sunday. Should the weather or some other disaster impact the tour, we will try to push notification on Facebook, the PHW blog, and the PHW voicemail message ASAP.

Watch for any changes about to the Saturday handbell concert and Sunday Lessons and Carols taking place at Braddock Street United Methodist Church at

The hours for the house tours are Saturday (Preview Party and Candlelight Tour) 6-9 PM, and Sunday (Daylight Tour) from 1-5 PM.

Note that George Washington’s Office Museum, 32 W. Cork St., will be open on Saturday only, 3-9 PM. Washington’s Office will not be stocked with House Tour tickets or booklets.

The Bell House, 106 N. Cameron St., will be open Sunday only, 1-5 PM. The Bell House will be stocked with House Tour tickets and booklets.

There will be complimentary warm drinks at the Bough & Dough Shop for all visitors as in previous years.

Costumed carolers from Winchester Little Theatre, organized by Nancy Ticknor, will once again stroll the streets and serenade tour-goers at the open houses between 2-4 PM on Sunday with festive holiday music. Carolers sing 4 or 5 holiday standards at each stop. They will start and end at the Winchester Little Theatre, and travel to the houses open on the tour.

The weather forecast is partly cloudy on Saturday, to rainy on Sunday. Precipitation is not expected to start until after 5 PM. Temperatures are expected to be in the mid-40s, falling to the low 30s overnight.

Have a safe and happy Holiday House Tour, everyone!

Featured Bough & Dough Shop Artisan: Marilynn J. Boyd

Beaded Snowflakes

Marilynn lives in Middletown and has done various crafts before becoming addicted to beading. She has been at it for 6 – 7 years now.

She works with a large collection of beads in a variety of colors, shapes and sizes made of crystal, glass, resin, and wood.

She even has hand-made ceramic beads she bought as a young teenager which were simply strung into necklaces.

Now she stitches bracelets, earrings, and necklaces using beads of all kinds, some only 1/16″ in size.

Her snowflakes are created on metal forms with beads of various colors, shapes and cuts to catch the light when hung on a Christmas tree or in a window.

Beading requires creativity, an eye for color and texture combinations, plus a bit of dexterity and patience. There are so many beads and so many options; you just have to be open to the possibilities.

“Sometimes I even dream in beads!”

Featured Bough & Dough Shop Food Truck: Jack Knuckle Gourmet

Steve and Abi Callahan

Jack Knuckle Gourmet, Winchester’s first gourmet food truck, was opened in 2014 by dynamic husband and wife team Steve Callahan and Abigail Gomez. Steve has been a chef in the industry for over 20 years, and was thrilled to be involved in bringing the exciting food truck culture to the area!

JKG specializes in delicious gourmet sandwiches, but along with street-side vending, they also offer on-site and in-home catering, with exquisitely prepared menus and mouth-watering creations from the skilled hands of the chef.

Whether you stop by the truck in Old Town Winchester, or have JKG cater your event, you are guaranteed to try something new and love every last bite.

Visit Jack Knuckle Gourmet at and on Facebook.

Jack Knuckle Gourmet will serve lunch at the Bough & Dough Shop between 12-3 PM Saturday, Dec. 3 and Sunday, Dec. 4.Jack Knuckle Gourmet menu for Dec. 3 & 4.

Bough & Dough Shop Greenery

greeneryOutside on the deck of the Winchester Little Theatre awaits a bounty of freshly-cut greenery for your holiday decorating. Buy greenery in bulk by the bag at the Bough & Dough Shop this weekend, including pine, juniper, magnolia, spruce, nandina, holly, and boxwood, or buy handmade decorated wreaths, arrangements, and bows for your decorating needs. Special thanks are due to Lynne Caldwell, Cheryl Crowell, Donna Downing, Howard and Joan Lewis, and Nancy Murphy for providing the bulk greenery.

Greenery 2015Nate Windle will return again with fabulous finished greenery creations. In addition to the traditional fresh greenery wreaths and arrangements you have come to expect at the Bough & Dough Shop, Nate will provide some limited artificial greenery decorations so you can enjoy his artistic skills for years to come. If you are making your own arrangements from the bulk greenery, you can also expect a selection of bows made by Nate that are suitable for adding the finishing touch to your handiwork.

Featured Bough & Dough Shop Artisan: Linda J. Brown

Graustark Farm’s Fiber Products

Linda Brown has been spinning, weaving and felting with fiber for over fifteen years. Her foray into the fiber world started with spinning angora from her daughter’s 4H bunny. From there she progressed to raising a few sheep and llamas. After realizing how soft, luxurious and easy to clean the llama fiber could be, Linda developed a breeding program to raise a variety of llamas specifically for their soft fiber and good temperaments. Llama fiber is different from sheep wool in that it is a hair fiber which has no barbs and contains no lanolin.

Through the farm business, Graustark Farm LLC, Linda uses her llamas’ fiber to create custom wearing apparel and accessories through weaving, knitting, crochet and felting. The process starts on the farm with shearing in the spring and then progresses through hand spinning the yarn to weaving or other needlework. Almost all of Linda’s designs are created with her own handspun yarn from llamas living on the farm; other fibers may be added for color or texture. In addition to using llama fiber for her own designs and private commissions, Linda creates with the other farm fibers of alpaca and Romney wool as time allows. The farm participates in fiber shows and promotes llama fiber as a new horizon in luxury fiber.

Linda feels that education about llamas and their wonderful fiber is as important as the sale itself. She hold the position of Senior Consultant with the Camelidynamics program of llama and alpaca handling and training as well as being active in several regional llama associations. Graustark Farm displays llamas and Linda’s fiber art in various settings, such as the Bluemont Fair, Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival, the Blue Ridge Spinners and Weavers Guild, Franklin Park Arts Center Gallery and of course by appointment on the farm. Learn more about llamas and their fiber on the farm web site,