The home of Lorita and Rod Thompkins will be featured in this year's Tour of Homes. The Victorian boasts many of it's original features, including stained glass windows.Deb Harm's grand American Foursquare will also be a stop for the Tour of Homes. Original oak woodwork paired with renovated spaces makes this home charming.

Dates and locations set for Tour of Homes

The Friends of the Wayne Museum have set the dates and announced the names of those who will have their homes open for this year's Tour of Homes.

Five homes in Wayne and the Wayne Museum will be part of this year's tour, set for Friday and Saturday, Nov. 17-18. Tours will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. on Friday and 1  to 4 p.m. on Saturday. 

Homes on this year's tour include Mark Kanitz and Lukas Rix, Deb Harm, Rod and Lorita Tompkins, John and Sherry Dorman and Steven and Dr. Marysz Rames. In addition, the Wayne County Museum will be decorated and a part of the tour.

Tickets are $15 each, with proceeds from the event going toward general upkeep of the museum.

Advance tickets for the event may be purchased at all Wayne banks, the Wayne Area Economic Development Office and Rustic Treasures. Tickets will also be sold at the museum during the tour.


Deb Harm's home is located at 414 Douglas Street.

Built in 1905 for J.G. Mines (who started Mines Jewelry), this house represents the typical American Foursquare design - square, two-story with four bedrooms upstairs and front porch. Notice the cozy seating area there for warm summer evenings.

This home retains much of its original features - quarter sewn oak woodwork and floors, two sets of five panel pocket doors and open stairs. All the wood floors have been refinished. It was typical to use the best woods on the main floor for guests to see and less expensive fir upstairs where only family would be. The original plans are still in the home.

Changes over the years have included an updated bathroom upstairs, converting a pantry into a 3/4 bath on the first floor, and updating the kitchen (just this past year).

A small back porch was opened to be a banquette eating area. The back door opens onto a deck for outdoor dining. The light fixtures throughout are new, as well, and the windows were replaced with energy efficient vinyl windows. There is also a finished family room in the basement, but it not included on the tour.

The quilts in the bedrooms were created by Deb's mother, the late Delores Lammers of Randolph.

Jill Brodersen has decorated this home in a Santa theme from her own and her mother's collections Every ornament on the front parlor tree is some form of a Santa. And, there may be a surprise for all visitors.

Over the years, at least eight families have lived here, including Deb and her children. It awaits another family to call it "home." 


The Rod and Lorita Tompkins house is located at 420 Douglas Street.

Ten original stained glass windows add elegance to this Victorian home. Built in 1888 for Frank Northrup, Wayne's first city attorney, it reflects Charles Eastlake's influence on architecture during that period. Notice all the various exterior details.

When the Tompkins moved into the home in 1978, the front porch had been remodeled into Craftsman style, a glaring departure from Victorian. It has since been restored to its original appearance, the design copied from a photo of the home taken around 1900.

Upon entry, notice the honey-colored oak woodwork (none has ever been painted or refinished), the very ornate solid brass hardware, the 10 foot ceilings, open stairway, three sets of pocket doors, front and back parlors, fireplace and china closet.

Mrs. Tompkins is an active member of the Historical Society. Her interest in historical preservation is evident throughout the home. The wide wallpaper borders are reproductions of papers used in the 1880s. Notice her collection of gilded picture frames.

Off-white lace curtains give guests a feeling of nostalgia. Electricity was added in 1926 and several fixtures are from that era.  Rod made the long, solid walnut buffet in the dining room about 45 years ago. It is mortise and tenon construction without a single nail.

In 1992 a small back porch was enlarged to be a four-seasons room. In 2010 the kitchen was gutted and the eating area bumped out for more space. The large window addition overlooks a brick patio, outdoor fountain and flower gardens.

Lorita has always wanted a Hooser cupboard but there wasn't room, so a cabinet beside the refrigerator was designed to look similar and would be her baking center. Notice her collection of copperware and small crockery. The pantry cupboard is original to the house and was the basis for the style of cherry cabinets. The original wood floor was refinished. A tiny half bath was relocated to the new laundry room addition. The exterior of this copies the original decorative elements of the home. 

The State Historical Society has commented on how well these additions blend into the existing structure. 

The tour does not include the second floor which has four bedrooms, a bath and airy sun porch which is used as a sewing room off the master bedroom. This house is best viewed during the daylight to see the beauty of the windows and their jewels.

Samantha Bierbower will be providing music for the enjoyment of all attendees during the tour.

Rod and Lorita's tradition is to host Christmas morning brunch for their three married children, five grandchildren and two fiancees.

The Wayne Herald

Mailing Address:
114 Main Street
Wayne, NE 68787
Phone: 402-375-2600

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