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Believe in Brooksville

By Natalie Kahler Posted on November 6, 2019

When I was 13, my parents moved us out of Pittsburgh to a small Western Pennsylvania town, Cambridge Springs, and purchased a historic home to convert into a bed and breakfast. 

With a winding staircase, a widow’s walk, 14-foot ceilings, and lovely black walnut and chestnut molding, the town banker who built it in 1876 had built to impress.  The home had most recently been used as a funeral home; and what could be more fun for a kid than a creaky old house with lots of secret spaces to explore and leftover caskets above the garage?

The White Family in western Pennsylvania, where Natalie Kahler remembers helping run the family bed and breakfast.

My parents had seven children at the time (the last three would be born while we lived there). As an adult I think back to that time of painting, rehabbing antique furniture, modernizing plumbing and electric, and moving walls while a bunch of kids ran around “helping,” and I can’t imagine how chaotic a time it must have been for my very brave parents. At one point the only really safe place to sleep was in the parlor, and I can still see the sleeping bags and suitcases lined up in front of the white marble fireplace.

The Amos Kelly House in Cambridge Springs, Pennsylvania (2010).

It was a lovely life; my mom is the essence of hospitality, my dad could fix anything in that old place, and the kids contributed by making beds, cleaning guest rooms, and handwashing the breakfast china.    We gave tours dressed in period costumes and learned the history of our home and little town – setting me up for a lifetime of valuing the past and its connection to our future.

Moonlight over Main Street was a recent fundraiser for Brooksville Main Street.

I think my childhood experience made me triply excited about Main Street’s recent fundraiser, Moonlight Over Main Street.  Attendees enjoyed live music and exquisite dining at two Bed & Breakfasts in Brooksville. 

Moonlight over Main Street

Both homes were built by families important to Brooksville’s early days: The Dolan House (built 1890s) belonged to Frank Ederington and The Mirador (built 1884) housed Brooksville’s Railroad Station Master, Roland Frazee.

The Mirador is a recently renovated bed and breakfast in Brooksville, Florida.

At the event, guests toured the homes and heard stories about their residents.  Tickets were $75 and proceeds will be used towards some exciting Main Street beautification plans.

Brooksville is blessed to have so many people who love our historic homes and are willing to invest in them to keep them beautiful for our modern world to enjoy. 

Let’s show them our appreciation by noticing their efforts – now is the perfect time of year to walk and discover the architecture and beauty of our historic district.

Brooksville’s upcoming November events

Meanwhile, stay tuned to the Brooksville Main Street website or our facebook page for the latest happenings.

and LOTS of Christmas fun in December, so stay tuned…


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