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Take horse-drawn carriage on Victorian Christmas Tour

Karl Horeis

This year’s Victorian Christmas Tour will include a wagon tour of east- and west-side homes led by famed stagecoach driver “Hank Monk,” and a ceremony honoring the 100th anniversary of the newly renovated Brougher-Bath House.

The 12-stop tour organized by the Carson City Historical Society is Sunday. The carriage tours will start at the corner of Curry and Third Streets, where Fred Stanio will portray Monk. The retired Carson man will wear a scarf made by his wife and a blanket coat borrowed from a buddy who does Civil War re-enactments. He is president of the Foundation for the Betterment of Carson City Parks and Recreation.

“He looks just like Hank Monk,” said Sue Ballew, president of the society.

Stanio, as Monk, will tell how he drove Horace Greeley from Carson City to Placerville for a speaking engagement, hitting some spots so rough, Greeley put his head through the top of the carriage.

He’ll also give background on Monk’s life, which, according to historical documents, included a lot of drinking. Will he lead the tour drunken in order to make it historically accurate?

“I don’t think I should,” said Stanio with a laugh.

Another highlight of this year’s tour is the ceremony at the Brougher-Bath House. The home was built in 1903, and has recently been renovated by Carlita Ray.

“They’ve done a magnificent job of renovating the building,” said Ballew. “It’s just magnificent. It’s not furnished, but you don’t need furnishings to see how marvelous it is.”

The U.S. Postal Service has created a limited-time postmark honoring the historic house. Tour participants will be able to buy postcards or letters with the limited Brougher-Bath postmark.

Mayor Ray Masayko and State Archivist Guy Rocha will also be there.

“I’m going to try to provide some historical perspective on the house,” said Rocha. “What I see there, between the Olcovich house and the Brougher-Bath house, is a beautiful portal to the historic district.”

Another stop is the Krebs-Peterson house on Mountain Street, a few doors south of the Governor’s Mansion. An art show will be hosted by owner Bob McFadden, whose collection includes a Picasso and a Warhol. The Bruce Cox Jazz Trio will perform.

Other stops include the Bliss Mansion, where young violinists will play; First United Methodist Church, where the Hosanna Bell choir will perform; St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, where carolers will sing; the First Presbyterian Church, where cookies will be available; and the Ormsby-Rosser home at 304 S. Minnesota.

Three wagon tours of 22 people will be offered by Hoofbeats. Wagon tours are at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. Because there is limited space, others are encouraged to drive themselves.

Tickets for the Victorian Homes tour are $15 for adults; $12 seniors and students and $5 for children. They are for sale at the Carson City Visitors Center at 1900 S. Carson St., The Bookcellar at 1202 N. Carson St. and the Roberts House Museum at 1207 N. Carson St. the day of the event. To reserve a spot on the wagon or for more information, call 882-1805.

Contact Karl Horeis at khoreis@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1219.