By Hiroko Sato
GROTON -- If you've ever wondered what elegant living meant in old New England, you might want to take a step into the circa-1812 federal home known as Calmore Country Estate in Dunstable.
A guest bathroom on the second floor may tempt you to sink yourself into the clawfoot tub and watch the fireplace glow.
Friends and families gathering for Thanksgiving could gather around the farm table in the kitchen or enjoy each other in a light-filled formal dining room complete with rustic furniture and oriental rugs.
The 21-room house that has been renovated from top to bottom joins the fine lifestyle of the 19th-Century and modern conveniences.
And it's all there for you to see when the homeowners invite the public in for the Groton Home Tour to help raise funds for Groton Community School.
The 11th annual Groton Home Tour will take place on Saturday, Nov. 21, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. In case of inclement weather, the event will be held on Sunday, Nov. 22.
The tour will begin at Groton Community School, 110 Boston Road, Groton, which is a nationally accredited nonprofit organization that provides programs to children from toddler years to kindergarteners.
This year's tour will feature five unique private homes, including four in Groton and one in Dunstable. The exact locations of the homes will be made available only to those who buy tickets. The homes range in style and era from a historical farmhouse to a meticulously updated classic colonial to a custom-built 4,600-square-foot house with a "resort-like" backyard, according to Jenn Greenwood, president of the Groton Community School board of directors.
"We have something to interest everyone," Greenwood said.
In addition, there will be crafts for sale by local artisans and merchants in the homes and at the school so participants can enjoy some holiday shopping. There will also be chance items for people to win that will be on display a week in advance at the school.
The annual tour is the largest fundraiser for the school, generating $22,000 last year.
"It's a popular signature event that kicks off the season," Greenwood said.
Advance tickets for the tour are $25 per person, or $35 per person with a boxed lunch from Simple Goodness. Tickets purchased on the day of the tour are $30 and are for admittance only.
Calmore is a 6,800-square-foot estate on Main Street in Dunstable that owners Mary and David Dacquino have painstakingly renovated since they bought the property in 2003. The two-story barn on the premises houses Mary's antique and interior design business, Seasons at Calmore. Her passion for old things comes through her own handwork, such as patterns painted on some floors to make them look authentic to the period. She has opened her home for the Home Tour in the past, as well, saying it's for a good cause.
To purchase tickets, visit http://www.grotoncommunityschool.org/home-tour/tickets or visit the following locations: Groton Community School, 110 Boston Road, Groton; Lavender, 137 Main St., Groton; Kimball Farm, 400 Littleton Road, Westford; Seasons at Calmore, 519 Main St., Dunstable.
Sponsors include Babin Landscaping, The Catalano Companies/Dunkin Donuts, Circle Health, Lavender, Middlesex Savings Bank, Platt Builders and Z Master Builders.