Fundraiser to open homes and ears for local student musicians

For Newton Now

Area residents will get the chance to tour area homes and listen to local musicians as part of a fundraising effort for local high school musicians.

The event, Harmonies in Holiday Homes, lasts from 2 to 7 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 8, and takes place in four local homes decked out for the holidays. Each home hosts a mini concert of holiday music.

The tour features the Newton homes of John and Debbie Robinson, Dr. William and Mary Beck, and Richard Stinnett and Charlie Robinson. The fourth home is in North Newton and belongs to Conrad Snider and Diane Sorensen.

Musical performances include the Newton USD 373 String Ensemble under the direction of Kara Tann at the Stinnett/Robinson home. Those musicians are Rai Angolo, Hanna Brown, Olivia Oiler, and Keaton Wetschensky. Father-son trumpet duo, Greg and Josh Bergman will be at John and Debbie Robinson’s home. Vada Snider, flute, and Karen Loucks, keyboard, will perform at the Beck home. Ethan Moulds will play the piano in the afternoon at the Snider/Robinson home, while Jonah Schloneger will play in the evening.

Advance reservations are required and may be made at Prairy Market and Deli (formerly Prairie Harvest) 601 N. Main in Newton, for a suggested donation of $13 per person. All proceeds go toward scholarships for Newton High School instrumental students. Sponsors for the event are Gertrude Olson and in the past, the late Dr. Erwin Olson, the Charles Olson Memorial Foundation, Newton Treble Clef Club, and participating merchants Prairy Market and Deli, Ruzen Flowers, Bella Salon and Tuxedos, and North and South Dillon Floral Shops. Information is available by calling 316-727-4533.

The Homes:

John and Debbie Robinson, 610 Stone Creek Drive, Newton

This ranch style home was built in 2000 by Harder Construction and is situated in Stone Creek Addition. The location was chosen because of its calming lakeside view and cozy neighborhood. The spacious backyard has been a perfect setting for a variety of gatherings for the Robinson family and friends.

Dr. William and Mary Beck, 1621 Hillcrest Road, Newton

Dr. William and Mary Beck have lived at 1621 Hillcrest Road for 29 years. The two-story home has 55 windows and the original wood /parquet floors. The home sits on one acre of land and was built in the 1930s by Mr. Brodhagen and his 18-year-old son for the Dotson family. Unfortunately, Mr. Brodhagen died during construction, and his young son finished the project himself.

Richard Stinnett and Charlie Robinson, 509 Normandy Road, Newton

With its distinctive shape and roof lines, this beautiful mid-century modern ranch built in 1957 by Chuck and Susan Koehn combines character, a spacious lawn, mature trees and manicured flowerbeds to present a distinctive and welcoming curb appeal.


Conrad Snider and Diane Sorensen, 510 West 24th Street, North Newton

The home of Conrad Snider and Diane Sorensen at 510 West 24th St., North Newton, is often referred to as the “Koppes House,” in reference to the family who built the house and continually owned it until the early 2000s. One of the first homes in North Newton, the house was built in 1883, one year after the red barn—which is located just to the north of the house—was built.

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