The Idyllwild Area Historical Society’s 2017 tour on Saturday, Sept. 16, features four homes built in the 1930s, one in the 1960s, with refreshments served in the oldest home, the museum headquarters built in 1920.
Photo by John Drake

Idyllwild’s history, much like that of Anza and Garner Valley, is colorful and rich. Old-timers are proud of having lived through times of no regular electricity and rutted roads.

The Idyllwild Area Historical Society and museum sponsors an annual home tour whose residents are proud of their homes’ history and restoration efforts. Said new IAHS President Charlotte Grody, “Home owners are at the toured homes and will discuss their renovations and home-maintenance efforts. These homeowners are engaging and just love their homes.”

This is the 17th year of the tour, with visitors numbering between 500 and 650. The museum is the sixth edifice on the tour and the oldest of the homes. It was built in the 1920s and during the tour, will be a place for folk to stop for refreshments between home visits.

Four of the homes on tour were built in the 1930s and the fifth, built in the 1960s, sports a marriage between mid-century Palm Springs and Idyllwild. Toured homes feature a variety of historic touches, including knotty pine, stone fireplaces, hand-crafted wood mantles, authentic appliances from the 1930s and 1940s, Native American artifacts, and wonderful gardens and walkways.

People who love the mountain’s history and architectural authenticity will appreciate the immersive experiences this tour offers.

The IAHS home tour is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 16. The cost is $20 per person. Tickets, which are the home-tour booklet, can be purchased on the day of the tour next to the monument in the center of town starting at 9:45 a.m. or at the museum. Pre-sale tickets can be bought at the museum during normal business hours, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, 54470 North Circle Dr., at the corner of Oakwood Street.