Showing Historic Buildings Love this Valentine’s Season

Cary, NC – Valentine’s Day and February is a time to show affection and attention to loved ones. But this year, a new initiative will let people show their love for historic Cary sites and learn more about them.

Learning About Cary History

Mary Collins got the idea to create this kind of event in Cary as a long-time patron of the Downtown Cary Farmers Market. Since the market has been in front of the Ivey-Ellington House, Collins said she saw the 1870 house get a lot of attention, especially during the previous Fall Festival.

“Many people were gathered around the Ivey-Ellington House but there were a lot of people who don’t know about its history, or about any of Cary’s historic structures.”

From there, Collins started talking with other historians in Cary as well as the Friends of the Page-Walker to plan something out. Then, the group learned about the long-running “Heart Bomb” event promoted by the National Trust for Historic Preservation every year. They made some changes, including changing the name to “Show Love for Cary’s Historic Buildings in Heart of Cary” and unlike usual “Heart Bombs,” this will not involve taping paper hearts to Cary’s buildings.

Instead, from Friday, February 9 to Thursday, February 22, 2018, people will be encouraged to visit these Cary sites and take photos, videos and tour around them to learn more.

“It is not a structured, official Cary event,” Collins said. “People who are history buffs have volunteered and people can go on tours led by them and learn more.”

Spreading the Love

Collins said tours will develop based on community interest but there will also be opportunity for tours on the Saturday, February 10 and 17, 2018 Downtown Farmers Markets.

In addition to the Ivey-Ellington House, the history tours will include the Cary Arts Center, the Page-Walker Arts and History Center and some of the older businesses along Chatham Street in the heart of Cary’s downtown.

Information about the events have been spreading through organizations such as the Friends of the Page-Walker but mostly Collins said it has been a word-of-mouth campaign.

As people learn more about Cary and its history, Collins said she hopes it will make them engage with their community.

“I encourage people to educate themselves about what happens in Cary and figure out ways to play into that,” Collins said.


Story by Michael Papich. Photos by Hal Goodtree and Jessica Patrick.

1 reply
  1. Ken and Mary Collins
    Ken and Mary Collins says:


    Thank you for the wonderful article and photos of some of our Heart of Cary Historical buildings. Looking forward to Showing the Love Saturday 2/9/2018.

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