STORY WRITTEN BY MONICA THOMPSON FRAGALE
For Digital First Media
Chester County Day, the annual house tour that showcases private properties throughout the county, will highlight 21 homes and 14 public structures in Kennett Square and the surrounding areas on Saturday.
The tour, now in its 76th year, steps off at 10 a.m. and showcases the southwest quadrant of Chester County. The annual fundraiser for Chester County Hospital will benefit the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit.
Tickets are $40 and are available for purchase online at www.chestercountyday.com or in person at numerous locations (see the Chester County Day Web site for more information). For $52, tourgoers can buy a tour ticket plus a box lunch at either the Marshalton Inn or the Galer Estate Vineyard and Winery – two of the stops along the tour.
Debbie Hess, one of the chairwomen of the event, described it as a must-see tour.
It starts in East Bradford Township with a tour of Southdown, a “grand mansion” from the 1730s that was the birthplace of Gilbert Cope, a renowned historian and genealogist. One stop features a restored barn from 1834 with a connection to the ice industry, and another stop – the original Schramm property – is what Hess calls a “beautiful 1949 colonial revival home.”
At a stop on Wawaset Road in West Bradford Township, visitors can explore a restored 1900s Kennett farmhouse known as “Meadow Valley.”
The tour gives visitors to Chester County a chance to explore Marshalton, Marlboro Village, and Kennett Square.
A walking tour of Kennett Square includes seven stops in the northern section of town. The Kennett Friends Meetinghouse is one such stop; two others are homes on North Garfield with must-see gardens.
History lovers will want to check out Marlborough Village, where stops include the Marlborough Meeting House and a home that was part of the original village.
A 34-acre property on Route 842 called “Rosewood” boasts a number of fabulous gardens, according to Hess. They include the East Garden, the Kitchen Garden, and even a Secret Garden.
“We’re calling it a mini Longwood Gardens,” she said. “Some of the original specimens and the gardens are amazing.”
IF YOU GO
What: Chester County Day tour
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1
Where: Throughout southwest Chester County
Tickets: $40; $52 with box lunch
For more information: Call 610-431-5301 or go online at www.chestercountyday.com