SATISFY YOUR CURIOSITY ABOUT NOANK’S UNIQUE HOMES DURING TOUR
It has been 12 years since the residents of the village of Noank opened their seaside homes to share their history and the beauty of village life. A walking tour planned for June will give visitors an opportunity to enjoy the area’s architectural and decorative heritage, the fragrance of spring blossoms, and views of Fisher’s Island Sound, with its weekend parade of sailboats and motor yachts.
Two miles downriver from Mystic, and perched on the point of land where the Mystic River meets the Sound, Noank was a busy center of shipbuilding in the 1800s, and many of the homes which grace the storied streets and lanes had their origins in that era. Today, they stand as examples of tasteful historic restorations and, in some cases, parts of the original structure are blended with modern additions. Many offer open views of Mystic River and Fisher’s Island Sound.
The June 16 House and Garden Tour will give visitors an inside look at eight homes and three gardens. Among the homes are the Morgan Point Lighthouse (restored as a private residence in the early 1990s and usually only viewable from the water), the former Palmer Inn, the Captain Peter Baker House and the ornate Deacon Palmer House, a striking example of Victorian architecture.
The three featured gardens are joint works of art created by the couples who own them. Model train buffs take note— one garden boasts 800 feet of G-scale track intertwined in its layout. Each site will have a team of volunteers to greet visitors and to provide background about each property. Several Noank residents organized the tour to support Our Shoreline Community Association (OSCA), a local non-profit group which helps seniors remain in their homes by providing targeted services and social support. OSCA is a “virtual village” for seniors, covering the areas of Noank, Groton Long Point, Mumford Cove and Mystic (both Groton and Stonington). Founded two years ago, it is part of a nationwide grassroots movement to help seniors age in place and delay the need to move to assisted living.
With guidance from a coordinator, neighbors help other neighbors attend to appointments and light errands; connect with dependable service providers (lawn maintenance and pet sitting for example) and experts in elder care (doctors, attorneys); maintain social contact with their communities. According to its website, www.ourshorelinecommunity.org, its mission is to provide seniors with “the support and security of a retirement community in their own homes,” thereby creating “a retirement community without walls.”