Usher in the holiday season with an enchanting tour of historic homes and landmarks. The annual Oaklands Christmas Candlelight Tour of Homes is slated for December 5, 2015 from 4:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. The tour, sponsored by Oaklands Association will feature beautiful and historic private homes, distinctive churches, and the graceful Oaklands Mansion.
In the late 1860s, the Maneys subdivided and sold much of their front acreage into lots to create a residential neighborhood, originally called “Maney’s Addition,” thought to be Murfreesboro’s first “subdivision.” It later became North Maney Avenue, which intersects present-day Main Street. Advertisements for lots in Maney’s Addition appeared in local newspapers assuring prospective owners free access to the Maneys’ spring. In the late 1880s, after she left Oaklands, Adaline Maney moved into a home in Maney’s Addition known as “Big Holly.” Today that home is the property of Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Bell and will be featured on the tour.
Following the old carriage path of the plantation, stops along the holiday tour include the following historic buildings:
- Oaklands Mansion, 900 North Maney Avenue
- “Big Holly”, Mr.& Mrs. Gordon Bell, 718 North Maney Avenue
- Oaklands Park Seventh-Day Adventist Church, 711 North Maney Avenue
- Mr. & Mrs. Rhea Cole, 619 North Maney Avenue
- Mr. Cory Williams, 603 North Maney Avenue
- Mr. Adam Holsted, 343 Jackson Street
- Dreamingincolor, Ms. Deneen Glidwell, 504 North Maney Avenue
- Demos’ Restaurant Office, 503 North Maney Avenue
- Old Dunaway Store, Ms. Linda Stevens, 312 North Maney Avenue
- Mr. & Mrs. Rick Cottle, 225 North Maney Avenue
- Mr. & Mrs. Rob Baker, 217 North Maney Avenue
- Ms. Kathy Yeager, 120 North Maney Avenue
- Mrs. Nancy Morris, 347 East Main Street
- Central Christian Church, 404 East Main Street
- Ransom Historic House & School Museum, 717 North Academy Street
These festively adorned historical homes and churches, dressed in holly and evergreen, will transport you to a simpler time. From the veranda of Oaklands Mansion and along the nine block tour, you will hear the music of carolers from local schools. Warm up with a cup of Demos’ famous chicken-n-rice soup or their award-winning banana pudding, on sale at their restaurant office at 503 North Maney Avenue. While at Oaklands, visit Gee-Ma’s food truck for old home cooking and a “meat and three” menu.
“This years’ tour will guide visitors along the old carriage path of the plantation and offer an opportunity to visit homes spanning several decades and various architectural styles,” said James Manning, Executive Director of Oaklands. “Visiting the festively appointed homes on our Candlelight Tour is a popular way to begin the celebration of the holidays.”
The cornerstone of the tour is the grand Oaklands Mansion. Interpreters in period attire will guide you through the history of this gracious home. At its peak, Oaklands was the center of a 1,500 acre plantation and one of the most elegant homes in Rutherford County. Since that time, Oaklands has seen dramatic changes. Following the Civil War, it deteriorated from a majestic mansion to virtual ruins and, in the 1950’s, its very existence was threatened. The mansion was brought back from the brink of destruction, saved from the wrecking ball when a group of concerned ladies created Oaklands Association in 1959. Since that time, the Association has worked tirelessly to restore Oaklands to its original splendor and preserve its unique history.
Today, local residents and visitors alike enjoy the mansion that has been lovingly restored and brought back to its former glory. The proceeds of the Candlelight Tour of Homes go toward the continuing preservation of this historic treasure. Purchase advance tickets (either online at www.OaklandsMansion.org or in the museum shop) by 4 p.m. on Thursday, December 3 and receive a special price of $12.50 for adults. Admission is $15.00 per adult at the door, $5.00 students and children, free for ages 5 and under. Sponsorships for the Tour are still available. On the night of the tour, tickets can be purchased at any home on the tour or at Oaklands’ Museum Shop. Oaklands Association is a non-profit educational organization. For information on becoming a member or a volunteer, please call (615) 893-0022 or email: info@OaklandsMansion.org.