New Franklin wants to raise the public profile of the city-owned Tudor House, a historic 20-room mansion that sits along Turkeyfoot Lake.
The picturesque property, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, isn't being used enough for social, corporate and community events, Mayor Paul Adamson said.
"We want to make it more of a Portage Lakes institution than just a New Franklin institution," he said. "It's such a beautiful venue and we want to utilize it more."
The Tudor House, located at 665 Latham Lane, has a storied history. It was built in 1929 by Franklin H. Mason, a senior executive of the B.F. Goodrich Co., and given as a wedding present to his grandson and granddaughter-in-law, Frank Raymond and Zeletta Robinson.
The property was sold to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources in 1974. The city took ownership in 2010.
"This house was built for love," said Cherie Lopuchovsky, administrator at the Tudor House.
Lupuchovsky, who handles bookings for the property, said she stresses the "love" part when talking with brides and grooms.
"How does it feel to be part of that legacy of love? I think it's just beautiful and romantic," she said. "It's a beautiful, historic home and we are so fortunate to be the keepers of that piece of history. It's just truly a jewel for us to cherish."
The five-acre property, which is adjacent to Portage Lakes State Park, is available for rent for weddings, corporate outings and other gatherings. But the city has relied too much on word of mouth and hasn't done a good enough job marketing the Tudor House in today's world of social media, Adamson said.
As part of its awareness campaign, the city helped launch a Tudor House website (www.tudorhouseonportagelakes.com) and created a dedicated Facebook page (www.facebook.com/Franklin-Park-Civic-Center-The-Tudor-House-1430705957245728/).
It also will host the New Franklin Community Christmas Open House & Tree Lighting — an event that's returning after about a 10-year hiatus — from 2 to 5 p.m. Dec. 2 at the Tudor House. The gathering will include musical performances by area high school students, kids activities and a visit by Santa and Mrs. Claus.
The tree lighting is at 5 p.m., and people will circle the 20- to 25-foot tree and sing Christmas carols.
The city wants to host more community events at the property. The city spends anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 a year maintaining the Tudor House, the mayor said.
Rick Armon can be reached at 330-996-3569 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter at @armonrickABJ.