FAIR HAVEN DOORS OPEN FOR SANDY VICTIMS

Among the homes on Friday’s tour is this one on Harvard Road. (Click to enlarge)

By DANIELLE TEPPER

A holiday tradition and one of the key fundraisers for the Fair Haven School District, the Fair Haven PTA’s biennial house tour typically draws some 300 community members, with proceeds supporting the educational programs in the borough school system.

This year’s edition, though, is focused on Hurricane Sandy relief efforts. Attendees at the event, which takes place Friday, are encouraged to donate new kitchen and household items, as well as gift cards to housewares stores, for those who lost their essentials in the storm.

“We thought it would be a unique way of supporting the hundreds of two-river area home owners who lost or sustained severe damage to their homes,” said tour co-chair Lauren Steets. “Most of us know at least one local family who is suffering now as a result of the storm, and we all want to help in some way.”

The tour runs from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and features eight distinctive borough homes. Among them are an updated historic 1870 house, a renovated cape cod style home with a shore feel, an eclectic house built in on the Navesink in 1890, a builder’s modern dream home, and a modular home with a front porch. Each has been decorated for the holidays, with lavish floral arrangements, sure to be an inspiration to those inclined to pull out all the stops for their own holiday decorating.

“We are so lucky to have eight families willing to open up their homes to the PTA during this busy time of year,” said Laura Nolan, Fair Haven PTA President. “This is great day is guaranteed to put everyone in the holiday spirit.”

Along the way, participants acting as tourists in their very own town will be able to sample some of the best cuisine the area has to offer: David Burke’s Fromagerie (Rumson), Pop’s Garage (Shrewsbury), Woody’s Ocean Grille (Sea Bright), Cups and Cakes (Rumson), Lusty Lobster (Atlantic Highlands) and Fair Haven favorites Tavolo Pronto, Gourmet Picnic, and Taste and Technique – one per home.

Two raffles will be offered during the tour, with prizes that include $3,000 from Sycamore Landscaping and dinner for 10 prepared in the winner’s home or other local home of their choice by Chef Hernan Garces of the Raven Tea Room. The dinner includes beverages, flowers, dessert, and service. Tickets are $10 each.

The stops on the tour are:

102 Buttonwood Drive
201 Cambridge Avenue
36 Fair Haven Road
85 Grange Avenue
74 Hance Road
25 Harvard Road
248 Kemp Avenue
77 Spruce Avenue

Tickets will be sold Friday at 248 Kemp Avenue and 85 Grange Avenue beginning at 10:30 a.m. No children will be allowed on the tour and participants will be asked to remove their shoes.

Collection boxes will be placed at each of the homes. The donations will be given to Sandy Family Match, which will them distribute them to local victims of Hurricane Sandy.

For more information, contact tour co-chairs Britt Garrison at 732-272-8622 or Lauren Steets at 732-933-1867, or click here.