Courtyard and Garden Tour features former Huneycutt home, Senior Center

It’s garden tour time across the South and this year, Stanly County will be showcased in a new event hosted by the Stanly County Historical Society. The Courtyard and Garden Tour will be 10 a.m.-4 p.m. April 30.

Proceeds from this rain or shine event will fund educational programs and preservation initiatives of the Stanly County Historical Society, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

This self guided tour will allow access to 10 private and public courtyard and garden spaces stretching from Albemarle to Richfield that will inspire gardeners of all levels. The tour features a variety of garden spaces including DIY landscapes, restored formal gardens and centuries old family farms.

Site No. 5 is at 271 N. Third St., Albemarle. Three generations of the King family reside in this landmark Stanly County house built in 1923 by A.C. Huneycutt.

Huneycutt was a local attorney, Albemarle mayor and publisher of several newspapers in the Piedmont region.

Now the home of Austin and Megan King, their children Ellison Rose and Khi, along with Austin’s parents, Rob and Dondee King, they enjoy the gardens and rich history of the home.

A wide front porch is shady and thriving with container plantings: ferns, geraniums and annuals. Several of the stone urns are original, while matching ones are new. The backyard slopes steeply to a large brick paver patio where Austin and Megan said their wedding vows.

A slate lined rainwater trench winds through the yard, while River Birch trees shade the back yard that includes a bird bath and stepping stones that once belonged to Austin’s grandmother, Joyce King.

Some of the landscaping “timbers” are concrete lintels from when Albemarle High School was remodeled.

Note the bottle tree at the bottom of the garden. A large dogwood, a Twisted Corkscrew Hazel Tree and other trees complete this park-like setting. Since the path to the patio is downhill with various steps and no handrails, you can enjoy the expansive view from the upper lawn.

Site No. 6 is the Stanly County Senior Center at 283 N. Third St., Albemarle.

Here, visitors can see what planning and mulch can do. In 2021, through the efforts of The Friends of the Senior Center and a gift from the Tom and Jean Rabe family, new landscaping was installed at the front entrance and a covered courtyard was constructed in the rear.

The courtyard includes a shuffleboard court and space for multiple fire pits. The courtyard named “Becky’s Backyard” honors Becky Weemhoff, retired Senior Center director, for her long tenure of service. The Friend’s Garden features ornamental shrubs, a contemporary garden sculpture and a secluded garden bench to relax and enjoy.

Site No. 6 is the Stanly County Senior Center at 283 N. Third St., Albemarle. (Contributed)

Advance $15 wristband tickets are available at the Stanly County History Center, 157 N. Second St., Albemarle, or by mail order to Stanly County Historical Society, PO Box 1384, Albemarle, NC 28002. Pre-paid mail orders will be held at the will call station at the 1852 Isaiah Snuggs House, 112 N. Third St., Albemarle, from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m.. Wristband tickets for $20 may be purchased on the day of the tour at the Isaiah Snuggs House.

All ticket sales are non-refundable donations.

Direct inquiries to 704-986-3777 or Stanlycountyhistory@gmail.com.