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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – The historic, festive halls of the Turner-Dodge House should be able to get even the biggest of Scrooges and Grinches into the Christmas spirit.
Turner-Dodge House, built in 1855 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972, is hosting its annual Christmas open house through Dec. 31.
Guests can walk through the home’s three stories and enjoy curated decorations in beautiful bedrooms, ballrooms, dining rooms and living rooms that call back to American yuletide culture ranging from the 1890s to the ’50s.
The house is located at 100 E. North St., Lansing. Admission is $5 for adults and free for children under 12. Hours are 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday through Thursday, and noon to 5 p.m. on Friday through Sunday.
Susan Ward, president of the Friends of Turner-Dodge House group, has been helping maintain the house and oversee events since the late-’90s. A history buff, Ward took an instant liking to the fascinating mid-19th century mansion.
She said the good vibes of the toasty warm mansion and its classical Christmas decorations is a helpful salve for the soul after the difficult times the country has experienced the past two years.
“We’ve had such a trying time for everybody with the pandemic, that having something that’s bright and festive has been a real attraction for families. We have it as a family-friendly event, there’s a lot of families with small children that visit,” Ward said.
The home originally belonged to the pioneer family of James and Marion Turner. The house was built in 1858, before Lansing was even a city.
“After the War of 1812, it became a topic that Michigan needed a centrally located capital. Bids were put out, many communities wanted to be the capital’s home. Lansing at that time did not exist,” Ward said. “James, who lived in Mason, decided that he needed to be a part of that conversation. He was important in getting the group of men and deciders to get the capital to what is now Lansing.”
Ward said the family moved out in 1958 and ownership of the house was transferred to the Great Lakes Bible College. During David Hollister’s tenure as mayor, the house was taken over by the city and is now managed by the Lansing Parks and Recreation Department.
If you’ve never taken the time to experience one of Lansing’s most historic buildings, Ward said Christmastime provides the perfect opportunity.
“It’s a real mix of generations and individuals that have put the decorations together,” Ward said. “We have some pieces that are even from the ’70s and ’80s. It’s a wonderful eclectic mix of Christmas and holiday decorations.”
See the picture-perfect Christmas home at Lansing’s Turner-Dodge House
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