This week as the sun sets behind the Rocky Mountains, it won’t be tough to pick out Douglas Inskeep and Katherine Spencer Inskeep’s home from afar.
A 10-foot Christmas tree made of metal orbs will glow from the balcony, complemented by twinkling snowflake lights strung near the front door. Up a set of wooden steps to the first floor of the loft condominium awaits an array of holiday splendor. Designer Nancy Mahoney incorporated a blend of Scandinavian and Latin American elements throughout the home. A miniature forest of glittering trees, faux fur and candles draws the eye to a hand-crafted dining room table. In each room, elves, reindeer, and expertly decorated trees that nearly touch the ceiling inspire the feeling of a whimsical winter wonderland.
The Inskeeps’ home is one of three that has been professionally decorated and will be displayed as part of the annual Gift of Home Tour. The self-guided tours run Thursday through Saturday
This year’s tour includes a variety of architectural styles and holiday themes. In addition to the Inskeeps’ Prospect home, tour-goers can view a historic home built in 1903 and a “modern traditional” home.
“It is unlike anything you will have ever seen,” said Katie Wiser, the development and communication manager for Meals on Wheels. “Each room is unique. It is almost like a live version of a home and garden show.”
Longmont Meals on Wheels provides food to homebound elderly people and those with disabilities. Each delivery also serves as a wellness visit to clients. The nonprofit serves more than 400 to 450 meals a day and is experiencing an increase in the number of people who need the service. Wiser said roughly eight new clients a week have been served throughout the year.
The Gift of Home Tour is one of Meals on Wheels most significant fundraisers of the year, drawing roughly 1,500 people. On average, the event raises enough money to purchase more than 13,000 meals.
For many years, Spencer Inskeep and her friends have been spectators on the Gift of Home Tour. Last year, when she asked her friends which home they liked best, they said her home, even though it wasn’t part of the tour. She took the hint and volunteered her home for this year’s tour.
“This was my opportunity to give back and to help build a community in Longmont that we all want to be in,” she said.
Spencer Inskeep, a social entrepreneur who works in marketing and also is a Meals on Wheels volunteer, and her husband moved into the home in the Prospect neighborhood last year, after living in Old Town Longmont for 27 years.
Spencer Inskeep said when the couple decorated their home, they did so with her motto “live life bright” in mind. She commended Mahoney for incorporating the theme into the holiday design with decorations sponsored by Ace Hardware.
“She added a lot of fun color into the space,” Spencer Inskeep said.
“In a world where there is 15 shades of beige, we need color in our lives and brightness.”
Spencer Inskeep encouraged people to take part in the tour and give back to a local cause.
“Meals on Wheels is huge to our community and does such important work,” Spencer Inskeep said. “Second, I think it is a really fun way to get in the holiday spirit and get some ideas for how you want to decorate and get out with some friends.”
IF YOU GO:
Gift of Home Tour
When: 5 to 9 p.m. Thursday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday
Where: Three Longmont homes
Cost: $45 for opening night, includes dinner at local restaurant; $20 in advance and $25 at the door
Tickets: Longmont Meals on Wheels, 910 Longs Peak Ave.; Ace Hardware, 1727 Main St.; Niche Design House, 5855 Sky Pond Drive, Suite F106; Woodley’s Fine Furniture, 1400 S. Main St.; and Front Range Mercantile, 1201 S. Sunset St., or online at thegiftofhome.org.
For more information, call 303.772.0540.
By Kelsey Hammon, Longmont Times-Call (TNS)