Community Lifestyles News

Cotton Ball returns after three-year hiatus

(Editor’s note: According to an April 27 email from Historic Augusta, the Cotton Ball has been moved to Sacred Heart Cultural Center due to inclement weather.)

(Featured photo is courtesy the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation’s website)

Historic Augusta’s Cotton Ball, a tradition in Augusta since 1988, will be held this year for the first time since 2019.

The casual event will be from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, April 27 in the gardens surrounding Overton, the home of Lauren and Bert Gary, located at 635 Gary St. in Summerville Historic District. 

Overton is a neo-classical revival style house originally built circa 1799 by Gov. John Milledge, and significantly remodeled circa 1890 and 1910. The house features a monumental portico with four Tuscan fluted columns sheltering a wide front porch and second-floor balcony. Milledge named the property because it overlooked the town, according to a news release from Historic Augusta.

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Overton received the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation’s Excellence in Restoration Award in 2022.

“The current owners acquired the house in 2019 and began restoration. The project involved saving and restoring the 1910 design and features, while addressing 21st century needs. Notable things that were preserved in the house include curly heart pine ceilings in the Butler’s Pantry, original plaster throughout, hardwood flooring, original doors and hardware, and the portico and porches,” according to the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation’s website. “As one of Augusta’s landmark residential properties, both for its architectural and historical significance, this restoration ensures that Overton remains a vital presence in the Summerville Historic District.”

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Outback Steakhouse is catering the meal with dessert by Two Moms Kitchen. There will be a cash bar featuring mint juleps, and Will McCranie will provide the entertainment.

Admission to the Cotton Ball is by current, new, or renewing membership in Historic Augusta, Inc., which is open to all who are interested in preserving Augusta’s historic places. Memberships start at $60 for individuals and $100 for couples.