Homes for the holidays

Historic homes and Christmas décor were both in the spotlight on the Holiday Home Tour

Photo by Deb Gau Visitors admired the holiday greenery and the original carved fireplace mantel in the Jim and Ann Carrow home, one of three stops on the Lyon County Historical Society’s Holiday Home Tour.

MARSHALL — Holiday decorations and the Christmas spirit have always been part of the Lyon County Historical Society’s annual home tour. But this year, the weather ended up adding to the atmosphere, with fresh snow all around.

In some ways, the cloudy skies and snow on Sunday were a good thing for the Holiday Home Tour, said Lyon County Museum director Jennifer Andries.

“You can really see the (Christmas) lights,” Andries said. Some past tours have been on days that were almost too sunny to get the full effect, she said.

The winter storm that brought around seven inches of snow to the Marshall area had cleared up by Sunday afternoon, so the Historical Society was able to hold its annual fundraiser as scheduled.

“It’s a fundraiser that we can’t really postpone,” Andries said, because it would be too complicated to coordinate homeowners’ schedules. Fortunately, the snow had finished by tour time, and visitors were stopping at the museum for refreshments and to buy tickets for the tour.

This year, the tour featured three Marshall homes: the Ken and Jan Noyes home on Sunset Circle, the Jim and Ann Carrow home on West Redwood Street, and the Joseph and Victoria Cieslewski home on West Marshall Street. Each home featured a different style and architecture. The Noyes home was built in 1990, and was one of the first homes in the Belvidere Addition, east of Avera Marshall Medical Center. Both the Carrow and Cieslewski homes date back to the 1900s, and were built by prominent businesspeople in Marshall’s history.

The architecture was just one part of the fun on the tour, however. Visitors saw each home’s unique holiday decorations. The Noyes’ decorations reflected on the meaning of Christmas, the birth of Jesus. Visitors found Christmas greenery, vintage furniture and memorabilia decorating every corner of the Carrow home.

Victoria Cieslewski said her family’s home tried to reflect the period Queen Anne style of their home.

“We try to do more of traditional Yule decorations,” she said. In the parlor, there was a Christmas tree hung with candy canes, while the kitchen included other traditional decorations like oranges studded with patterns of cloves.

The Cieslewskis moved into their home in 2017. Victoria Cieslewski said getting to live in a historic home has been an exciting part of coming to Marshall. She said she also enjoyed the community.

“I like the small town feel,” she said.