Homearama 2013 Review and Ticket Giveaway!

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When I first heard about Homearama, I envisioned something like a huge trade show in a convention center, displaying wares by various home improvement, interior design, builders and the like. As time drew closer, I realized I would be walking through houses, but I still didn't "get it" until we went through this weekend.

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For those of you, like me, who are clueless about it, Homearama is a lot like walking through 18 HGTV episodes highlighting building design features and interior design ideas. 18 houses over 2 sites (10 at Rock Springs and 8 at Locust Grove); it can be pretty overwhelming!

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The houses are also in competition with each other. After touring the homes, attendees can complete a ballot voting for their favorite houses and put them in the voting machines provided by the Jefferson County Clerk's Office to be counted. Other than the prestige that comes with being part of the team who designed and decorated these houses, I'm not sure what else the winner receives. I must admit that I did not vote, simply because I couldn't pick a favorite!

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Touring these houses gave me a couple of great decorating and storage ideas that I can use in my own house, as well as some ideas for our dream house down the road. I also saw several design schemes that did not fit our family's tastes; sometimes it helps to see what certain colors would really look like in a bedroom or how the lighting affects the mood and function of a family room.  Some ideas I really liked included using a map framed with crown moulding as a wall mural, ribbons tied and alternated to make a valance, and making a mural in the bathroom around the tub to tie into the decorating scheme in the bedroom. One master bedroom had a two-level walk-in closet with a ladder that went to an upper level (an attic?) for seasonal storage.  How clever is that?

 

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When we went, it was HOT. Homearama does have a concessions stand tent where you can get hot dogs, brats, soft pretzels, pretzels or chips, and drinks. I felt the food and drinks were a bit pricey, but we did get a lemonade and share it; it was too hot outside. Because no food or drinks are permitted in the houses, buying concessions is a great opportunity to sit and take a rest while reading in the program book about the next houses in the tour. There was a lovely playset that entertained several children, including my 2 year old, close by the concessions tent, as well as decent restrooms with real toilets that flush (no stinky portajohns here!).

 

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One of the features that I greatly enjoyed was a playhouse designed like a miniature lake house. Complete with comfortable bunk beds, air conditioning, a large flat-screen TV and nautical touches, this playhouse was built by Youth Build for a little boy named Caden. I had a chance to talk to one of the builders, who volunteers with Youth Build, and learned that it is a program that helps young adults earn their GEDs and learn useful job skills. They did two playhouses- one at each Homearama site- and these playhouses are for children with disabilities or chronic illnesses who have been nominated and selected to receive their very own playhouses adapted to meet their needs. It was nice to learn a little about the partnerships and projects that Home Builders Association of Louisville has developed to make a positive impact in our community.

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If you are interested in attending with young children or infants (children 12 and under get in free), I highly recommend sun protection for walking between houses and play breaks, especially as hot as it is right now. I had my infant in a baby carrier the whole time. My toddler walked at first, but ended up riding on my husband's back when we decided we didn't want to worry about him breaking something. I saw people who had strollers, but I think they would hinder your experience significantly, as most of the houses have multiple floor levels.

 

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