Holliday at the Hower House

Written by: Juliana Amir

The Hower House was built in 1871, during the Victorian era. In those times, Christmas wasn’t a simple holiday, but rather a grand event where warm gestures and elaborate decorations were a must.

Walking in is a treat to the senses. Troubles are checked at the door as relaxing Christmas melodies soothe the soul and magical lights bring cheer.

You can wander through the three-story mansion at your leisure. Each room is a wondrous destination, and docents are around to answer any questions you may have. Begin by celebrating like the royal couple. To bring her husband the comforts of home, Queen Victoria adopted German traditions. You can see their first Christmas tree recreated in the East parlor and German feather trees with antique decorations in the trunk room.

Grace, the original owner’s granddaughter, and one of the three founders of Akron’s Weathervane Playhouse, has a room that will fill little girls with envy. Dolls of every type peek out from unexpected places, and a family of them have found a home in the Christmas tree, nestled among bright pink lights.

Climb the hand-carved staircase into the snowy region of the North Pole. Visit holiday treasures like Mrs. Claus’ kitchen, Santa’s workshop and a miniature army of nutcrackers!

In the picture gallery, children of all ages can write a letter to Santa and place it in his special mailbox, and who knows? — he may even be around to visit.

Before you leave, don’t forget to visit the Cellar Door Store and select from a unique variety of gifts. Whether you’re looking for a souvenir or a Christmas present, there is something for everyone. After you have toured and shopped, enjoy complimentary wassail and cookies.

If you are looking to create an extra-special family memory this holiday, Hower House is hosting breakfast with Santa on Dec. 15 from 10:00 a.m. to noon. Enjoy a walk-through after eating a beautifully-prepared continental breakfast with pastries, fresh fruit, sausage and more in the company of Santa Claus. Admission is $10 for children 12 and under and $15 for adults. Call 330-972-6909 to book your reservation.

The staff has woven warm memories into this historical mansion, from the little Christmas town swathed in majestic lights to sock monkeys dressed in festive sweaters. It’s a sight that is bound to bring forth your holiday spirit. Admission is $2 for UA students, so stop by soon, as decorations are only up through December. Enjoy this enchanting wonderland and indulge the inner child existing within us all.