Columbus, Ohio USA
Return to Homepage

Short North Tour of Homes and Gardens
A dozen stops finalized for 2011
September 2011 Issue

Return to Homepage

© Photos by Debbie Rosenfeld, Fine Art Photography

The Home improvement junkies, decorating buffs and garden lovers will have a dozen locations to enjoy as part of the 2011 Short North Tour of Homes and Gardens, presented by the Short North Civic Association and sponsors Dooley & Co. and Keller Williams Classic Properties. The event takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 17-18 at locations throughout the historic arts district.

This year’s tour features a concentration of homes in and around the Harrison West district, including the residence of interior designer John Wilson and his partner, Rob Ricer, the funky, one-of-a-kind home of artist Charles Wince, and a former Harrison Park model home decorated in Mission-style furniture and Disney memorabilia by former Disney employees Kathy Van Tassel and Terry Wick.

Among the garden-only tour stops is landscape architect Greg Krobot’s personal garden, a place for him to experiment with different plants before recommending them for clients’ gardens, and the lush, country-style backyard garden of Ned Cullom and Keith Gochnour, complete with a screened porch and water feature.

Also part of this year’s tour is an opportunity to explore the neighborhood public parks in close proximity to several tour homes. Beyond Short North centerpiece Goodale Park, there’s the intimate Sater Park on Price Avenue, and the city’s newest public park, Harrison Park, found along the Olentangy Recreation Trail.

(left) 507 W. Second Ave: Charles Wince: Welcome to WinceWorld! Artist Charles Wince purchased this “fixer upper” for $40,000 in 1988 when the Harrison West area was regarded as an “iffy” neighborhood. The house, built in 1917, has undergone many changes that would surprise and perhaps shock the original owners. It is now as much an art gallery as it is a home. Wince’s art permeates the structure as well as his collaborative efforts with other well-known Columbus artists. The spiral brick walkways in the back garden were originally conceived and laid by Paul Volker. Elaborate murals that dominate the second floor were executed by Melissa Vogley Woods. Custom furniture, tables, shelving and a large carved trompe l’oeil headboard in the bedroom were designed by Wince but executed with a high degree of craftsmanship by Aaron Schroeder. Aaron also created the 8’ steel sculpture that is the main focal point in the garden. Gardener Greg Maynard added his expertise and is responsible for most of the plantings in both gardens. The artwork of Rick Borg, Allan Crockett, Curtis Goldstein, Chris Mohler, and other local artists can be found on the property as well – making this home and garden a virtual smorgasbord of visual delights.


(right) 148 Buttles Ave: Beverly and Herb Brown

Former residents of Upper Arlington, the Browns decided they wanted to live the urban lifestyle and be closer to Herb’s downtown office so purchased this grand home in 2009 and began a major renovation. They had looked at the home once before and decided it would not meet their needs but then met contractor Ben Niswander who convinced them that, with some major renovation, he could make it into their dream home. The front of the first floor, with stained glass, mantles, ceiling medallions, and powder room, is original circa the late 1800s. The rest of the home has been totally reconfigured including the kitchen and new octagonal sunroom overlooking the beautifully landscaped yard. The second floor, formerly four bedrooms, is now two suites plus Herb’s study. The third floor is Beverly’s study and reading area. A workout room and a huge cedar closet fill the lower level. Throughout the renovation, the original woodwork was removed, stored in the basement, and reused. Interior designer, Jenny Salomy, assisted with colors, wallpaper, and furniture placement including antiques from ancestors and a table that Herb made in the ninth grade.

(left) 231 Buttles Ave: Greg Krobot (garden only)

The homeowner is both a horticulturist and a landscape architect. He considers his yard as his laboratory where he tries out different types of plant materials in different conditions and combinations before ever specifying them in his designs for clients. Greg thinks of his gardens as a train of thought, one big experiment, and swears he will get around to developing a planting plan some day. This property has extensive sun and shade perennial gardens in both the front and back yards. Fall is a tricky time for perennial gardens but there should still be plenty of color and certainly a variety of textures for the tour. There are a couple of brick patios at different elevations for gatherings or private meditation and an aggregate walking path that connects it all together. The backyard includes a formal reflecting pool with Greg’s pets, the gold fish. (If the weather cooperates Greg will display some of his collage art work which he sees as an extension of his professional design work.


The TOUR PREVIEW begins at 4 p.m. on Saturday, September 17. 2011.The $100 ticket also includes a cocktail reception and a private, chef-created dinner at one of several lovely homes in the neighborhood. The GENERAL TOUR is from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, September 18, 2011. Tickets for Sunday are $15 in advance, $20 day of tour, and include access to a trolley shuttle bus for easy traveling between tour stops.

Advance tickets are on sale at Spinelli’s Deli, 767 Neil Ave.; Bungalow, 940 N. High St., and through the Short North Civic Association’s website – Day-of-tour tickets will be available only at Spinelli’s Deli.

More information, including a chance to win tickets for September 18, 2011, is available through the SNCA website and Facebook page.

© 2011 Short North Gazette, Columbus, Ohio. All rights reserved.

Return to Homepage