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Monday, 28 November 2016 15:01

2016 Milton Christmas Walk features five festive homes

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File photo via Milton Christmas Walk on Facebook File photo via Milton Christmas Walk on Facebook

MESSENGER -- The Milton Area Chamber of Commerce will host the 14th annual Milton Christmas Walk from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4, 2016.

The walk will feature five Milton-area homes, including The Getchel House, 4826 N. Zinfandel Drive; Petrof House "The Chamber House," 5 S. John Paul Road; Stivarius House, 1231 Woodland Drive; Getchel House, 8700 N. Clear Lake Road; and Hirshberg House, 9005 N. Clear Lake Road.

The walk offers an opportunity to enjoy holiday decorations in a variety of homes, said Terry Williamson, Milton Christmas Walk director.

"There are two ranch styles, then there’s one two-story home, then there’s a historic home that was built by the Chamber and Owens Company," Williamson said. "We’ve got a house that’s a ranch style that looks like a house that’s on top of a house. The basement is like a whole other house."

Participants choose their own decorating styles.

"Some do all homemade decorations. Some do really fun country primitive style decorations," Williamson said. "A lot of people are collectors. (The Hirshberg House) has a Santa collection, so that will be in one of the rooms. ... We just let everybody do their own thing and enjoy it."

Williamson said she begins contacting homeowners at the end of August and then selects the homes in early October. Some people are eager to participate while others are a little more apprehensive.

"There’s been years when I’ve been scrambling for that last house until the last minute," Williamson said. "This year, we were lucky. We got them secured pretty early.

"Once they’ve done the walk, they’re so happy they did. It’s like we create a party in the town that night. As I run around to all the houses and check on how everyone is doing, they’re laughing and telling stories and listening to Christmas music. Everyone is having a good time. It’s a big social event."

Dani Stivarius, executive director of the Milton Area Chamber of Commerce, said she is looking forward to having her house featured in this year’s walk.

"I’m excited. My kids have gotten into the decorating. My husband has gotten into the decorating," Stivarius said.

Williamson said about 200 people attend the walk each year, including some from surrounding areas such as Beloit and Rockford.

"It’s a family event for sure," Williamson said. "A lot of people who’ve been going regularly make a day of it and visit Northleaf Winery first, then go out to the houses."

The cost to attend the walk is $10. Children 12 years and younger are free. Tickets can be purchased at First Community Bank, Northleaf Winery, Bank of Milton, Pene Jenta Boutique, Goodrich Hall Antiques and Red Rooster Antiques. Tickets also can be purchased by going to maccit.com or at participating homes the day of the event.

Besides the walk, other events are slated for Dec. 4 in Milton, including Santa’s arrival at 4:30 p.m. at Junction Square and a tree lighting at 5 p.m. at Goodrich Square. The outdoor sidewalk and craft sale will be held from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Community House, 20 Parkview Drive.

Hot Dogs with Santa will be held from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at The Gathering Place, 715 Campus St. A nutcracker display will be featured at the Main Hall from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3, and Sunday, Dec. 4. The cost is $2 for adults and $1 for children.

"Local people bring in their collection, so there’s a huge collection of nutcrackers on display," Williamson said.

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