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Entertainment & Lifestyle

Sugar Plum Tour inspires holiday style

11/28/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Kathleen Folkerth

Debbie Zarconi and Tia Stathopoulos are chairs of this year’s Sugar Plum Tour, which allows ticket holders to see five homes decorated for the season.
Photo courtesy of Debbie Zarconi
WEST AKRON — For the 12th year, the Sugar Plum Tour will present a slate of exquisitely designed homes for the holidays.

The Dec. 8 event features five homes — in Akron, Bath and Cuyahoga Falls — plus a patron party at another location. This year’s event also will include some surprises, according to Debbie Zarconi, of Bath, who is chairing the event with Tia Stathopoulos, of West Akron.

“It’s going to be an interesting year,” Zarconi said. “We’ve added a few twists to the event that will make it really exciting.”

Specifics are being kept under wraps, but organizers did say that the homes on the tour this year include a modest and artsy 1955 twinplex, a modified cape cod featuring an impressive great room and an 1820 Connecticut federal-style home, in addition to two other homes in West Akron and Fairlawn Heights.

For patron ticket holders, the tour will conclude with a party in Akron’s arts and entertainment district, featuring both residential and commercial space.

Patron tickets typically sell out quickly for the event, but this year Zarconi said the space being used lends itself to a large group, so there is no set limit.

Usually about 700 take part in the tour. Ticket holders pick up maps and tour information starting at 1 p.m. at Angel Falls Coffee Co. and have from 2 to 5:30 p.m. to visit the participating homes.

The homes on the tour are not necessarily the biggest ones in town, Zarconi said.

“It doesn’t matter whether it’s a home or a condo or an older home or newer home,” she said. “Just a home that’s interesting and fun.”

Zarconi said this is the first year she is involved with organizing the event, which she has supported as a sponsor with her husband, Joseph, and has attended many years.

“It’s my most favorite event that my husband and I attend,” she said.

Seeing the homes and their holiday décor is inspiring, she added.

“You get a lot of interesting ideas,” she said.

The tour is a fundraiser for the Gay Community Endowment Fund of Akron Community Foundation. The fund supports programs that positively impact the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community. This year, a portion of the proceeds will go toward the Gay Games 9, which will take place in Akron and Northeast Ohio in August.

Tickets for the tour are $25 and are available in advance at www.sugarplumtour.org or by calling 330-376-8522. Cash-only general admission tickets also are available at Angel Falls Coffee Co., 792 W. Market St.

Patron tickets are $150 and include the tour, patron party from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. and a limited-edition holiday ornament designed by local artist Claudia Zeber-Martell.

The presenting sponsor of the tour is Joseph and Debbie Zarconi. Major corporate sponsors include Bricco Restaurants, Dave Towell Cadillac, Jones Group Interiors and Summa Foundation. Individual sponsors include Todd A. Brown, M.D.; Sheila Martin; and Steve Williams and David Jesse.

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