Inaugural Parade of Homes to take place Sunday
Harmony Hall Photo by Catherine Hardee / Neuse News
This weekend in Kinston, people can experience a different kind of Christmas parade.
The inaugural Parade of Homes will take place on Sunday,from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. It won’t involve floats, but it will provide a heaping dose of Christmas spirit.
This event, sponsored by Meridian Builders, provides the opportunity to tour different beautifully decorated Kinston homes and view the unique decorations at each. The Parade of Homes is a fundraising event for Hope Restorations, a ministry that provides employment and training for those who have struggled with addiction. The ministry purchases run down homes and restores them, and then either sells or rents the restored homes at lower costs to those in need of a place to call home.
Amy Hill, who is helping coordinate the fundraiser for Hope Restorations, said that the very first home restored by the ministry is part of the tour.
“It’s a beautiful home, and that family actually owns a home for the first time in their life,” Hill said. “They graciously opened that home, and that’s one of the houses they are going to let us go through.”
Hill said each home on the tour has something special to showcase, whether it is a unique historical element to the home, or heirloom decorations,
“You never know what somebody finds magical about their home,” Hill said. “The ticket booklets contain a photo and a brief write-up about the home and decorations by the owner, so those are the things you will be looking for when you go to each home.”
Also included in the tour is historic Harmony Hall, which will be serving refreshments to visitors. All the decorations at the Hall will be historically accurate to the 18th century, allowing visitors to get a feel for a colonial era Christmas. The recently renovated O’Neil Hotel is another stop on the parade, showcasing the grandeur of the early 20th century architecture.
Hill said that she hopes that this year’s event will be the beginning of an annual tradition in Kinston. There were several homes whose owners intended to be part of the event, and while damage from Hurricane Florence denied them the opportunity, they hope to participate next year.
Tickets for the event are $20 per person, and can be purchased at The Beauty Box Salon in downtown Kinston or at The Market on Herritage Street.