Parade of Homes a chance to play MASH


Look for a photo gallery from the Parade of Homes at

Now I know why I never participated in the Parade of Homes. I’m suffering from a severe case of house envy, and I have only myself to blame. Apparently, I have champagne taste and a beer budget, as they say.

The self-guided tour, designed to showcase trends and technology in home building, features eight local homes. You can peruse everything from starter homes to dream houses and remodel projects.

As I wandered through the shiny newness of one of the dream houses (yeah, in MY dreams), wearing my little blue CSI booties to avoid tracking anything into this gorgeous abode, I remembered that elementary school game called MASH. It’s the game we played to see what house we would live in when we grew up. MASH stood for mansion, apartment, shack, house.

Well, as I looked at the $3,800 rocking chairs on the back patio, drooled over the custom metallic faux painting on a master bedroom wall, and wondered how a person can possibly use three showerheads simultaneously, I felt like I definitely drew the “S” in MASH. But I did leave that incredible home at 1439 19 Road wondering if there’s a way to install a water faucet at my stove for filling pots and pans. I’m a big fan of collecting great ideas.

I liked how the tour is designed to showcase a variety of new homes in different price ranges, and a remodel of an older home. This attracts participants who are looking for ideas for new construction (and contractors), as well as people looking for already-built new homes, and homeowners who are looking for ideas to use when remodeling their own homes. Even if you’re just looking for ideas for tiling your bathroom, it’s worth it to see these projects in person.

Another home, which I wouldn’t be afraid to live in, is by Griffin Concepts Inc. and showcased at 576 Corn Maiden Drive in Fruita. Griffin’s customized floor plan includes a lot of storage space, including a walk-in pantry, generous closet space with built-in shelves, and (my favorite) built-in window seats with hidden storage. One of the window seats is large enough to fit a futon mattress, so it’s an ideal space to read, relax or have an extra bed for company. Another neat feature of the home was the use of No. 2 grade white oak flooring on the main level, which offered more character in the wood’s imperfections.

It’s nice for potential customers to see what builders and contractors do “without a high-pressure situation,” said project engineer Dane Griffin. The home tour offers a kind of walk-through portfolio for homeowners (and potential homeowners) to see what professionals offer.

But I have to warn you, the side effects of the home tour are brutal. Suddenly, my fireplace-painting endeavor that remains in unfinished-project purgatory is a glaring eyesore in the corner of my living room. The 1970s-era ceiling fans seem ever so ghetto, and the orange-peel texture of the walls taunts me as I remember the hand-troweled finish on the walls in the newly-constructed houses.

After the home tour, I pulled into our cracked-concrete driveway, noticed the flower bed full of weeds and the paint starting to peel off the south side of the house, and sighed.

I mean, is it so much to ask to have a real laundry room, instead of a washer-dryer just off the middle of the hallway? I’m not asking for a slide, for goodness’ sake. Oh well, I guess I’ll start by finishing the fireplace project and vacuuming up all the dust rhinos.

And I’ll start looking for rocking chairs at yard sales.

You can experience house envy for yourself this weekend on the Parade of Homes tour, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. today and Sunday. Tickets are available for $10 at any City Market store. Go to for information.

Erin McIntyre is a writer, apprentice master gardener and owner of the gourmet pickle company, Yum Pickles. Email her at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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