Children’s Home & Aid Society event Nov. 11-12

Children’s Home & Aid Society is hosting its Seventh Annual Holiday Showcase House from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 11, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 12.

At 1244 E. State St., Rockford, this beautiful Italian Renaissance home has been totally restored and will take you back to 1863 with its architecture, which includes plaster moldings, marble fireplaces and marble floors. The home will be decorated in all its splendor by local businesses and leading designers for a joy-filled holiday season. You’ll love the old windows on the main floor, which open as doorways onto the covered porch. The crystal chandelier in the formal parlor took more than four hours just to hang the crystals, and the original wood railing on the staircase will bring visions of children sliding down it as they headed off to school.

Originally built at a cost of $8,000 by C.C. Briggs, a banker and partner in a farm equipment company, the home has gone through many transformations to include the major rooms converted into four apartments.

In addition to the home tour, local author Pat Brandt will sign books Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m. One of her novels, The Triad, takes place during the 1800s and fits with the period of the home. She will also be signing her books, The Octagonal Room and The Dead Lily, with 50 percent of the proceeds going to support Children’s Home & Aid programs. This year’s event will also feature tree ornaments with pictures of the Briggs Mansion as collector’s items. There will also be a “vendor room” for purchasing additional items for the holidays.

Tickets are $8 (children 5 and younger are free), and will be available at Village Emporium, Annie’s Gifts & Home Decor, O’Fallon’s and at the door. This home is not handicap accessible.

From the Nov. 8-14, 2006, issue

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