Featured StopsAll homes are in Winchester
By Laetitia Clayton - firstname.lastname@example.org
WINCHESTER - When Stephanie and Brice Duvall designed their home on Handley Avenue more than five years ago, there were two things Mrs. Duvall says she had to have in it -- a kitchen area that was open to the family room and a large island in the kitchen's center.
"Those were my main things for the kitchen," she says. "And the double oven, [which] we use a lot. We like to cook."
She got the things she wanted in an about 45-foot-long room at the back of the house, with the kitchen on one end and family room at the other -- plus tan and black granite countertops, cherry cabinets and floors, stainless steel appliances and a wet bar along one wall of the kitchen. And, new this summer as a surprise from her husband, a coffered ceiling on the entire length of the room. Spruce-colored walls and white trim lend to the relaxed but elegant atmosphere of the room.
Those who participate in this year's Kitchen Kapers tour on Sept. 19 will get a chance to see the Duvall kitchen for themselves, as well as the kitchens of four other Winchester homes.
This is the 10th year for the tour, put on by Quota International of Winchester. The money raised is donated to a different organization each year, going to Blue Ridge Hospice this year, says Linda Vickers, co-chairwoman of the tour.
"I can't say enough about Blue Ridge Hospice," Vickers says. "We just kind of felt that Hospice ... sooner or later someone is touched by the services they provide. It's just a wonderful thing."
Vickers says the Quota club hopes to raise between $2,500 and $4,000.
"We were concerned about the economy, but it turned out really well," she says of the tour, with sponsors and people willing to open up their homes. "It all comes together."
Vickers says that aside from the three primary event sponsors -- Westminster-Canterbury, Bath Fitter and Ferguson Enterprises -- other businesses are sponsoring the kitchens. Each home also will have caterers on site, as well as three to five hostesses from the Quota club and a volunteer from Blue Ridge Hospice, she says.
Caterers will bring food and drink samples and other items from their businesses, Vickers says. For example, Throx Country Store will be at the Duvall home, and likely will bring some food, wine and beer to sample.
"They bring all kinds of different wares," she says. "They're doing us a favor, and when people come through, it gives the [businesses] advertisement."
Although the kitchens are the focus of the tour, Vickers says it's also a glimpse into some of the homes. It's up to the homeowners to decide how much of the house they want included in the tour. Mrs. Duvall says she and her husband will open the whole first floor of their two-story, brick Colonial-style home.
"The kitchen is the focus," Vickers says. "But people get to see some lovely homes."
In addition to the various sponsorships, local artist Eugene Smith is donating a print and Anna Quinn Jewelry is donating a gift certificate, both of which the Quota Club will give to Hospice to raffle off at a future event, Vickers says.
Mrs. Duvall says she agreed to be part of the tour because it's for a good cause.
"I enjoy doing things for the community and helping," she says. "I like doing things like this, and I had a friend who did it last year and she said it was fun."
The Kitchen Kapers tour will be held Sept. 19 from noon to 4 p.m. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door of any of the five homes on the tour. Advance tickets may be purchased at Daily Grind, 621-A Jubal Early Drive, Winchester; Blue Ridge Hospice, 333 W. Cork St., No. 405, Winchester; Never Enough Yarn, 393 Millwood Ave., Winchester; Robert P. Mowery, CPA, P.C., 5493 Main St., Stephens City; and Throx Country Store, 1488 Senseny Road, Winchester. Tickets also can be purchased through Paypal at www.quotaofwinchester.org. For more information, call 888-1444.
Quota International is an international service organization founded in 1919.