Bootlegger's Ball Kicks off Home Tour Weekend

April 16, 2012 19 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

Riverside Avondale Preservation is kicking off Home Tour Weekend this year with the First Annual Bootleggers Ball, a 1920's-themed speakeasy benefit ball from 7:00PM to Midnight on April 20th.

The roaring twenties in Florida are synonymous with the land boom, gangsters, and prohibition. Stately residences and charming bungalows were being built in neighborhoods all around the state, Riverside and Avondale were no exception. The Bootleggers Ball celebrates this heyday, when characters like "The Real McCoy" made Jacksonville a bootlegging capital.

For one night only, the Garden Club will turn into a speakeasy, complete with a live music band, featuring beloved tunes from the jazz age, as well as other favorites, prohibition-era booze courtesy of MOJO No. 4 Urban BBQ & Whiskey Bar, and fabulous fare. Biscotti's is preparing a special "Italian Mob Job" menu for this event and there will be other freebies from Casbah and Pele's. Sweets provided by Breezy Coffee Shop, Peterbrooke Chocolatier, and Let Them Eat Cake.

Guests will learn the Charleston and other period dances and enjoy a fashion trunk show inspired by 1920s style courtesy of Erin Healy (hair and make-up by ACF Salon). 1920s cocktail attire is not obligatory, but certainly encouraged. There will be a photographer on-hand to photograph guests by classic cars from the era. Tickets are $75 per person, $125 per couple and price includes dinner, drinks, dancing, and other surprises. Tickets can be purchased by clicking here.

Then, spend the weekend enjoying the beautiful homes of Riverside Avondale. Each spring for the past thirty-eight years, residents of the Riverside Avondale Historic District have opened their homes to guests in an effort to raise money for the city’s premier grassroots historic preservation organization. This April 21st and 22nd, doors will open once again for a two-day self-guided tour. Ticket price is good for both days. All tour sites will be open on Saturday, April 21st, from 10 am until 5 pm, and on Sunday, April 22nd, from 12 pm until 5 pm.

The Riverside Avondale Historic District has one of the most diverse collections of architectural styles of any neighborhood in the country. Ten homes and one multi-family (John Gorrie) will be featured on this year's tour, sponsored by Sherwin Williams, which promises to be a special one. Participants will have a rare opportunity to step inside several of the district's most significant homes and attend a special exhibition of local artists at CoRK art space. The locations for this year's tour:

    1815 Bayard Place – A Southern Belle Restored to Her Former Glory
    1619 Challen Avenue – A Chic Old Farmhouse
    2558 Haldumar Terrace – Cute and Cozy Renovation
    2525 College Street (John Gorrie) – Schools In! The district’s most impressive adaptive use project.
    1818 Montgomery Place – A Mid-Century Marvel
    2970 Oak Street – A Stately Georgian Revival
    2131 Post Street – A Spacious Two-Story in Riverside
    3685 Riverside Avenue – A Green Revival
    2689 Roselle Street (CoRK Arts District) – Art House, featuring the work of local artists. Enjoy complimentary coffee courtesy of Bold Bean Coffee Roasters.
    3022 St. Johns Avenue – A Swanky Moderne on Bourbon Alley
    1380 Talbot Avenue – A Charming Bungalow
    3624 Walsh Street – A Trendy Bungalow

Participants will also have the opportunity to tour the Native Park and Sponsor Sherwin Williams' new store located at 3606 St. John's Avenue.

Tickets are $15 in advance, and $20 during Home Tour weekend. (RAP members receive a $2 discount: email with “Member Home Tour discount” in the subject line to request your discount code.). Tickets can be purchased by clicking here.

This year, there are special discounts for ticket holders at area restaurants and discounts for everyone at our local Sherwin Williams Store in Avondale throughout the weekend. Click here to learn more.

Article by Steve Congro