Children's Volunteer Health Network has kicked off its seventh year of offering cottage-style playhouses as possible Christmas gifts for kids, with proceeds benefiting area children who are uninsured or underinsured for dental or healthcare.
The cottages are presently resting on Rosemary Beach's East Long Green lawn and are visible from County Road 30A.
Each cottage/playhouse is different and each was designed and built by a different company, with each receiving its own unique dose of imagination and view into a child's mind.
Designed to entertain and delight, this year's choices range from a two-story pirate ship built by Freeport High School's Key Club members under the leadership of Ted Missildine; "Seaslide" designed after Seaside's iconic Coleman pavilion; the understated "Live It Up"; "All Decked Out"; and last but not least, "Kid Comfort," which was designed by HGTV's Vern Yip.
CVHN's Shaye Smith said the designs reflect local architecture.
"They all bring something different," she said. "One even has a rock-climbing wall."
Cottages for Kids is an annual “fun-raising” event that kicked off Nov. 9. The cottages are open for play and discovery each weekend through Nov. 30. It is a free, family-friendly event. The designs are earth-friendly and the materials must be safe and healthy for kids and good for the environment.
The 2013 builder teams include returning teams Randy Wise Homes with the Freeport High School Key Club, Corestruction, Heritage Builders with The Merchants of Rosemary Beach, Davis Dunn Construction with Studio A Architecture and the newest addition to the builder line-up, Chuck, LLC.
These carefully crafted mini-houses may be purchased, and this year, CVHN offers two ways to win a Cottage: by raffle and an online auction. Raffle tickets are available for purchase at the event and online.
The second way to win one of the creative cottages is to bid during the online auction. Buy It Now prices will also be available onsite and online. Bid online through Nov. 30.
Proceeds from the Cottages for Kids raffle and online auction support CVHN's ongoing efforts to make sure every child in the community has access to the health and dental care they need and deserve.
For more details, event schedule, to purchase raffle tickets or bid on a cottage, visit www.cottagesforkids.org or call 622-3200.
"This event is significant for raising funds for CVHN," said Smith. "Every year is different."
Bidding starts at $2,000 for all except Yip's cottage, where bidding starts at $3,000.
As for garnering Yip's involvement, Smith said the organization reaches out to designer contacts every year, as well as builders.
"One of the builders had contacts with Yip and got his commitment to design a playhouse," she said. "He chose to recreate his home in miniature."