On Dec. 14 the Friends of Eden Gardens State Park is again hosting its annual Christmas Candlelight Open House.



The beautifully renovated two-story Wesley House with its elegant white columns and wrap-around porch is the focal point of the 161-acre park. Built in 1897, the home is named after its original owners.



In 1963 the home was purchased by Lois Maxon, who totally renovated the house, creating a showplace for her family heirlooms and antiques. It reportedly holds the second-largest known collection of Louis XVI furniture in the United States.



During the five years she lived in the home, Maxon graciously opened her doors to various garden clubs for tours.



Decades after her death, the Friends of Eden keep the tradition alive by hosting each year the Christmas Candlelight Open House. 



Various clubs, organizations, business owners, and individuals spent a day decorating the grand and stately mansion, with each taking a room, porch, or hallway and giving it their own special touch and theme.



Friends committee chair Tricia Sloan said there are some rooms that are decorated totally different this year, such as the children's bedroom, which was decorated by children this year.



Sloan said children in 1st through 3rd grades at the Montessori School decorated the room as a child's room would have been decorated for Christmas during the time period when the house was built.



"They were so excited! They made all the decorations and used no staples, and no reds. It is all historically correct," said Sloan.



The owners of Nest on 30A gift shop participated for the first time and took another bedroom and decorated it with unique birdhouses.



The owners of Furry Fanatics pet store at Gulf Place are also first timers and used stuffed animals to decorate the downstairs back porch.



The Ladies of Point Washington United Methodist Church again claimed the dining room and brought back the rich look of gold, but this time added purple for an even more luxurious touch.



The holiday open house and candlelight tour of the Wesley House will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 14. The public is invited to enjoy the traditional luminary walk through the beautifully decorated rooms and then vote for their favorite.



Admission fees are waived for the evening and the Friends of Eden will provide refreshments in the Pavilion. Donations to the Friends of Eden are welcomed.



Eden Gardens State Park, 181 Eden Garden Road, is located in historic Point Washington, off U.S. Highway 98E and County Road 395N.