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PITTSBURGH Tours to feature Victorian homes



Published: Sun, November 25, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



Dinner tours are also available at $65 per person.

PITTSBURGH -- The 20th Annual Old Allegheny Victorian House Tour will be Dec. 7 to 9, in Pittsburgh's smallest historical neighborhood, Allegheny West, on the North Side.

This tour will feature six restored Victorian homes, plus the historical Calvary United Methodist Church (famous for its Louis Tiffany stained-glass windows), all decorated to celebrate a 19th-century Christmas.

Tours will be scheduled at 12-minute intervals between 5:30 and 7:15 p.m. Dec. 7, noon and 7:15 p.m. Dec. 8, and 12:30 and 6 p.m. Dec. 9.

Most homes in Allegheny West are more than 100 years old and Victorian in architectural style. Lavishly decorated for the holidays, they recall the late 19th-century birth of the traditional American Christmas -- elaborately decorated mantels, towering Christmas trees and pine, holly and mistletoe on stairs and chandeliers.

Traditions: Tour guides will explain Victorian holiday traditions, provide the history of Allegheny West and its famous 19th-century residents and discuss the individual homes as they are visited.

A "Holiday Shoppe" will be available at the conclusion of the tour in Jones Hall featuring hot cider, antiques, gifts and a variety of handcrafted items. Tickets for the regular tour are $18 per person.

Dinner tour: For those who want to experience a 19th-century Christmas firsthand, a candlelight dinner tour will be available Dec. 8 and 9. The dinner tours will feature all of the homes on the tour plus dinner at the magnificently restored Darlington Mansion.

Tickets for the candlelight dinner tour are $65 per person. Proceeds go to the Allegheny West Civic Council Inc., which uses the money to rehabilitate homes in the Allegheny West neighborhood.

A guided tour will originate from Calvary United Methodist Church at Allegheny and Beech avenues in the Allegheny West Historic District.

Allegheny West is just west of Aviary and West Park and north of the stadiums on Pittsburgh's Near North Side.

For more information, call (412) 323-8884.




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