Dollhouse Festival effort to raise funds to fight child abuse

Published: Sunday, Oct. 16 2011 3:00 p.m. MDT

Attention to detail makes a dollhouse entry unique. Millicent Lewis applies a bit of paint to the trim of the White House dollhouse the Democratic Women of Utah County are building for the 2011 Dollhouse Festival.

Marc Haddock

PROVO — The Democratic Women of Utah County want to start a friendly bidding war for the White House.

They'd like to see Republicans and Democrats vie with dollars over the dollhouse model of the presidential residence.

It's all in the name of raising money for The Children's Justice Center in Provo.

"Nothing hostile but all in good fun," said Millicent Lewis, a member of the board for the Democratic Women's organization.

The White House under discussion is a five-room model made to 1-inch scale, complete with 37 windows framed in resin molding, made and being furnished by the group for the 13th Annual Dollhouse Festival at the Provo City Library at Academy Square.

"There's not a model for this that we found," Lewis said. "My husband is kind of a genius and made this for us."

The dollhouse is about 3 feet wide and a couple of feet deep with room enough for a Lincoln Bedroom, an Oval Office, a kitchen and an entryway with a hanging chandalier.

Six-inch dolls will fit right in.

"We do have a little Obama doll," Lewis said. "We've got a little presidential picture of George Washington and silks for the carpets and drapes. We had to take a little artistic license but we're just fine with all the details."

The women in the club have painstakingly researched interior photos of the White House and are hanging wallpaper with matching patterns.

"We've spent time gathering and looking," said LouAnn Talcott, as she cut wallpaper. "One or two ladies are in charge of each of the rooms."

The money goes to support programs and needs at a center that serves abused children.

"Every year, we do something for charity, so this year we decided we should do a dollhouse to donate," Lewis said.

The Dollhouse Festival, started in 1999 by Barbara Curtis and Ruth Brasher, opens Oct. 20 at 6 p.m. with a dinner and live auction event. The cost is $100 a plate for dinner provided by The Chef's Table. Honorary chairman Fraser Bullock will be the keynote speaker. The auction will feature a quilt made by Renae Thackery, who donates a quilt to the event every year. That quilt is prized by those attending.

Bidding and the boutique run from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 21, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22. Admission is free.

A Mad Hatter Tea Party will take place Saturday at 2 p.m. Cost is $7 a person or $30 for a family. Children are invited to wear a favorite hat.

For details, visit DollhouseFest.com.

Sharon Haddock is a professional writer with 30 years' experience, 17 at the Deseret News. Her personal blog is at sharonhaddock.blogspot.com.

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