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Havre de Grace in the holiday spirit this weekend

Havre de Grace will be bursting with Christmas spirit this weekend.

Two of the city's biggest events return Friday and Sunday — first the annual Christmas Parade and tree lighting, followed by the 40th annual Candlelight Tour of historic homes in Havre de Grace.

Not only will it be First Fridays, but also Santa will be making his yearly visit.

The parade begins at 6 p.m. Following the parade, Santa and Mrs. Claus will light the tree at Rochambeau Plaza.

From 4 to 8 p.m. Sunday, the public can tour Havre de Grace homes, churches and businesses decorated for the holidays on the popular Candlelight Tour.

The tour starts at the Susquehanna Museum at the Lock House at 817 Conesteo St.

Tickets are $15 per person and before Sunday can be purchased at the Lock House Museum, from Lock House board members, the Havre de Grace Visitors Center, the Decoy Museum, Java by the Bay in Havre de Grace, the Leisure Travel Office at Aberdeen Proving Ground, the Johnson Family Pharmacy in Aberdeen and Preston's Stationery in Bel Air.

Sales will continue at the Lock House Museum and Decoy Museum until 5 p.m. the evening of the tour and can also be purchased online at thelockhousemuseum.org and picked up at any of the sales locations.

The tour features historic homes and buildings with interesting architecture and character. In the tour's 40-year history, more than 200 homes and buildings have been part of the event.

This year's tour offers a mix of old and new, downtown and waterfront homes that reflect Havre de Grace's eclectic nature.

Arts by the Bay Gallery, Mt. Felix Vineyard and Winery and La Banque de Fleuve are also on the tour as special stops.

Before the tour between 3 and 4 p.m., the adult choir of the Church of St. Patrick will perform a concert. Then from 4 to 8 p.m. both St. John's Episcopal Church and the United Methodist Church will be open for the public to view the historic buildings.

Chris Stathes, on the Lock House Board of Directors and whose home was on the tour last year, said this year's event will have "the same flavor we've always done" and "try to showcase a variety of locations, different eras and different histories."

The 17 stops on this year's tour vary greatly.

The first stop is the home of William and Gay Lynn Price on South Stokes Street.

Stathes noted that the home has been on the tour before, but not for seven or eight years.

The Prices' have been in the home, built between 1889 and 1902, since 2003, Stathes said, and the family has worked hard to restore the house to how it looked when it was built.

"It's a neat old house and they've done a wonderful job inside," he said.

On the other end of the spectrum is a condo at 505 Concord St., owned by Glen and Liz Steinbach in the Heron Harbor community.

"It's interesting because it's one of the newest places on the tour this year," Stathes said.

The building was constructed in 2007 and available for occupancy in late 2007. The Steinbachs were some of the first owners in the community.

Another interesting tidbit about the stop, Stathes said, is that the couple decorated their home with Bermuda, a favorite place to visit, in mind.

On Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and on Sunday from noon to 8 p.m. the Lock House Ladies will hold their annual Christmas Boutique at the museum.

Handcrafted gifts, decorations and baked goods will be for sale, as well as a silent auction.

All proceeds benefit the Lock House Museum.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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