To celebrate the ghostly season in 19th-century style, a lavish masquerade event will be held at the Conrad-Caldwell House Museum on St. James Court in Old Louisville. “This Victorian-inspired masquerade ball is a fundraiser for the Conrad-Caldwell House and it has become a highlight of the city’s social calendar,” says Earlene Zimlich, executive director of the Old Louisville Chamber of Commerce.
Author David Dominé will host the gala event that attracts Old Louisville enthusiasts and ghost story aficionados to the streets made famous in his bestselling books about haunted Old Louisville; in fact, some characters described in his stories make spirited appearances at the ball, where revelers are urged to don costumes or black-tie attire befitting this festive fundraiser.
The masquerade ball begins in the grand foyer and parlor at 8 PM, where guests will enjoy bourbon tasting, chamber music, champagne and cocktails, butlered hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction. At 9 PM, a cocktail buffet, dance and live auction, will begin downstairs in Caldwell Hall. Throughout the evening, guests can wander the first and second floors of the 1893 mansion to socialize and bid competitively for Bed & Breakfast weekend getaway packages, jewelry, wine, decorative items, confections, restaurant gift certificates, performance tickets and art.
The Conrad-Caldwell House “is the only house museum in the area which enjoys the involvement of descendants. By having them available, we are able to tell the story of the house from a very personal view . . . “ says Margaret Young, a Caldwell great-granddaughter and president of the museum’s board of directors.
One hundred-and-eighteen years ago, the mansion was known as “Conrad’s Castle,” because of its astounding price ($75,000). The richly carved, heavily ornamented Richardsonian-Romanesque mansion remains a treasure-among-treasures in Old Louisville. The mansion is described in Victorian Homes Magazine (August 2011) as a “design template,” for homeowners who seek “a bit of formality, elegance, refined craftsmanship and a respect for decorative arts.”
The ticket-price for the 6th Annual Spirit Ball is $150.00 per person ($140 per person before October 1). All proceeds from ticket sales and auction purchases will go to the upkeep and preservation of the Conrad-Caldwell House Museum. Tickets can be purchased by calling (502) 636-5023 or by logging-on to the website http://www.thespiritball.com.
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