Fifty years ago, the center of the social life in New Martinsville was the Magnolia Yacht Club, site of the New Martinsville Regatta, the Regatta Ball, and Mr. Lee's famous key lime pie. Over time, activities shifted, the club closed, and then went through several business ventures. Now, a local man is trying to revive the Magnolia Yacht Club as people remember it.
"Everyone tells me about things they remember from that time," says Jeff Wright, owner.
Although the club is still a work in progress, the Magnolia Yacht Club will be part of the ArtsLink House Tour scheduled for 1-4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2. Also on the tour is the new home of the Academy of Dance and Theater Arts at 263 1/2 Locust Street. A third home will be the Ken Block residence, unique for having been moved from a hilltop overlooking Rt. 2 to a wooded lot with walking trails.
The Blum House
Also on the tour is the home of former Mayor Lucille Blum on Maple Avenue. It is one of three tour homes located in the center of the 700 block of Maple Avenue, a street that is continually seeing renovated homes.
Blum's beautiful home dates back to 1899 and was the former residence of long-time City Recorder Lillian Stone. The gated Blum home is lush with flowering bushes that line the walk.
The other two homes in that area are of Martha Stewart Stowe and Heidi Huggins Blake-both who returned to their childhood homes.
Dating back to the 1930s, the Stowe and Blake homes demonstrate a love for the style of days gone by, with large front porches and neat front lawns. The Stowe home is distinct for its graceful porch curtains and yellow front door. The home of Heidi and David "Butch" Blake sparkles with new landscaping.
The home of Steve and Jerry Pallisco, owners of the Tin Ceiling, is another house on the tour. The home is located at the entrance to Cherry Brook Estates. Jerry is decorating her home with many of the beautiful decorations seen at the Tin Ceiling.
Cost of the tour is $10 and tickets will be available at the Francis Creative Arts Center at the corner of Maple Avenue and Washington Street throughout the afternoon. While there, visitors will be able to see the works of artist Debbie Van Schaik on display.
The house tour is a major fund-raising event for ArtsLink, helping to finance such events as the recent performance by "White Ghost Shivers" and The Nutcracker by the Mid Ohio Valley Ballet Company on Dec. 3 at the Lincoln Theater. Local funds are matched with funds from the West Virginia Commission on the Arts to make possible children's theater productions and artists residencies in the schools.
"It is through the financial support of local residents that ArtsLink has been identified as one of the most productive arts councils in the state," noted Eric Vincent, ArtsLink president. "Individuals and businesses in Wetzel and Tyler Counties have opened their hearts and their wallets to allow us to offer these many activities."
Additional financial support for ArtsLink's activities is provided by West Virginia Northern Community College, WETZ/WYMJ Radio, Dominion, Chesapeake Energy, and Ohio Valley Online.
ArtsLink is committed to providing universal accessibility wherever possible. Persons with special needs may contact Donna Earley at 304-455-2278 to request assistance.