If you’ve ever driven or taken a stroll down Linden Avenue in the Huffman Historic District, you may have been struck by the beauty of the tunnel of oak and linden trees that create a continuous canopy overhead. Or perhaps you were too distracted by the stately collection of Queen Anne, Italianate, and Eastlake Victorian homes. Especially in the fall, there’s a certain magic in the air in Huffman when jack-o-lanterns grace front porch steps and the leaves of the tree canopy transition to autumn colors.
This October 12th and 13th, that magic will be alive and well when the Huffman Historic Neighborhood Association puts on their biannual, guided home tour, “The Spirit of Huffman.” The Spirit of Huffman home tour’s tagline is, “Where Halloween and History Collide,” and, indeed it’s true, when the outing offers tour goers a visual feast of Halloween decorations and entertainment dispersed among the Victorian homes.
Participants of the home tour will be guided through the neighborhood, established in the 1860s through the 1890s by William P. Huffman, stopping to tour nine unique homes: one totally renovated house, a home bought through auction, homes renovated through Rehabarama, one home that housed the neighborhood post office, and two houses that were doctor’s offices. They will encounter an extensive collection of Halloween decorations, marble mantles, one-of-a-kind woodwork, bay windows, original hitching posts for horses, original carriage houses, carpenter’s lace, fretwork, corbels, towers, and curved-glass windows. Along the way, they’ll take note of Dayton’s first brick school house, two beautiful Victorian churches with active congregations, and an old market that is looking at a second life. They’ll hear about the importance of the community’s connection to the country’s largest manufacturer of bicycles.
Each time The Spirit of Huffman Tour is presented, visitors are entertained. In addition to being a tour of today’s homes, this is an energized evening walk through time. Expect to meet up with Huffman residents of a century ago who are scheduled to make an historic return engagement this year – just in time to make the past live again. Visitors are advised: It is likely you will be transported beyond the Victorian architecture you are coming to see. Come prepared for several “Close Encounters of the Huffman Kind” as they pull back the curtain on time, revealing William Huffman’s new dream for a diverse community of bankers, laborers, shopkeepers, and street vendors at a moment when it is all so exciting and new. When you come, be sure to listen carefully. The winds of change are rustling through the prairie grasses outside the city. It is 1870 and thanks to one man’s vision, Huffman Prairie is about to transform into the vibrant “Inner East” of Dayton.
A special thank you to sponsors DK Effects, LinkDayton, Blackbox Improv, Dayton Most Metro, St. Anne the Tart, Gem City Podcast and our great neighborhood of volunteers helping to keep the Spirit of Huffman alive.
How to Go?
When: October 12 and 13, 2018
Where: Huffman Historic District – 19 Linden Avenue, Dayton, OH 45403
Note: This tour is not recommended for children under the age of 12.
What are my transportation/parking options for getting to and from the event?
Once you arrive for the tour signs and guides will help to find parking.
What can I bring into the event?
This event is rain or shine. Please come prepared with umbrellas and/or ponchos in the event of rain. We will have flashlights to share but are limited. Feel free to bring your own.