Friday, July 8, 2011

Regional Designers Transform Emerson House Inside and Out

By Larry Favinger
Staff Columnist
The 22nd Decorator Show House of the Museums of Old York is a historic structure at 31 Long Sands Road in the center of York Village.
Situated in York’s Historic District, the Georgian Colonial house traces its beginning to circa 1719. Several structures, including a tavern have been on the site over the years and it is believed some of the old remains within the new. John Adams, the second president of the United States, is known to have stayed on the site.
The annual Show House celebration is a major project in the annual fundraising efforts of the museum. This year the event runs from Saturday, July 16, through Saturday, August 13 at the Emerson House.
It is sponsored by Maine Home and Design and will be open Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursdays until 7 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. The house will be closed Tuesdays.
There will be a preview gala to celebrate the event on Friday, July 15, from 6 to 9 p.m., featuring a jazz ensemble and food by the Kitchen Chicks. Tickets for this gala are $50.
The funds raised by the exhibit support educational programs offered by the museum along with other exhibitions and preservation efforts.
Designers and artists from throughout New England vie for the job of decorating a room or area of the house. This year there are nearly 20 areas that have been assigned to designers for individual treatment within certain guidelines established.
Massachusetts designers and artists from Beverly, Beverly Farms, Boston, and North Andover are included this year as are New Hampshire firms from Rye, Hampton Falls, Barrington, Portsmouth, Hollis, North Hampton, Bedford, Rye, and Greenland.
Those participating from Maine come from Kittery, Wells, York, and York Harbor.
On four Wednesdays during the Show House celebration, there will be luncheon lectures at local sites.
These include the York Harbor Inn July 20, a Fashion Show at Stage Neck Inn July 27, Stonewall Kitchen Cooking School Aug. 3, and The York Harbor Reading Room Aug. 10. Tickets for the luncheons are $55.
Admission to the Show House is $20 and includes a free tour of the new exhibit at the Museum’s Visitor Center in the Remick Barn. It also offers a reduced ticket price of $5 to tour all the historic buildings at Museums of Old York.
Parking is available in village lots.
Many of the items used in decorating the various rooms are available for sale and others will available in a boutique in the garage on the property.
Additional information is available by calling 363-4974 or by visiting the museum’s website at
Photo caption: Emerson House (pictured above) is the site of this year’s Decorator Show House of the Museum of Old York (Courtesy photo)