Fayette home tour #5: Winzeler house

Written by David Green.

tour.winzelerBy DAVID GREEN

John Winzeler isn't sure if it was him or his wife, Eunice, who came up with the idea. There was an incident in their lives about four years ago that left John thinking that he might go to Toledo and buy a BMW to drive around.

"One of us said, 'Why don't we build a house instead?'" John said, and the planning began.

John says he had little input in the project. It was Eunice and their two daughters who got to work on the design that incorporates plenty of open space and lots of windows. Lange Custom Builders of Archbold was hired to build the structure and for Eunice, it was a thrill to watch her drawings move from paper to the real thing. In 2009 the Winzelers moved in.

Their new home was built next to the house where they had lived the past 40 years, just down the road from the Zone School where John served as principal for many years. With the new home in place, John disassembled the old home board by board. Some of that old house is now built into the new.

The home features hickory flooring and cherry cabinets in the kitchen and living room. There's oak woodwork throughout the home and plenty of closet space.

An open design connects the kitchen, living room and sun room. There are two bathrooms, a large laundry room, an office and a cloak room on the main floor. Upstairs, with separate heating and cooling systems, are two bedrooms and a bathroom. Most rooms in the house feature a two-tone painting scheme, sometimes subtle and sometimes stark.

A full basement includes a wood-burning fireplace and two entrance stairways: one from the main floor and one from the garage. Some basement rooms include recycled cedar siding and wood paneling from the Winzelers' old house. There are also two classroom doors and banisters from the former Zone School.

Two of the windowless bathrooms include solar tube lighting—a system that collects more light than a skylight.

"It's really surprising how much light they bring in," John said.

The exterior walls look very much like wood, but it's actually cement board siding. The Winzelers didn't want vinyl or metal, and they expect fewer maintenance needs than with wood siding.

There's one word John uses to describe his art collection—eclectic—and that diverse interest is evident from the moment a visitor enters the front door. There's art everywhere. It's a house, but it's also a gallery.

There are collections of soapstone, ivory, bronze and wood carvings from their travels. There are paintings, prints and stitchery from both far-away artists and from local ones including Ann Schang, Bev Biddix and Barb Bruggeman.

"It's kind of a bargain basement collection," John said. He's always picking up interesting items from estate sales and his son, Kim, occasionally brings in quality art from visits to Goodwill stores.

John says he's always impressed with the time people put into creating a piece, particularly wood carvings which he has dabbled in himself.

"I can't walk past things like that," he said.

Now that the Winzelers have been in their new home for three and a half years, they occasionally are asked how they might have done things differently and what they want to change. 

Eunice's answer is always the same: "Not a thing."

  • Front.sculpta
    SCULPTORS—Morenci third grade students Emersyn Thompson (left) and Marissa Lawrence turn spaghetti sticks into mini sculptures Friday during a class visit to Stair District Library. All Morenci Elementary School classes recently visited the library to experience the creative construction toys purchased through the “Sculptamania!” project, funded by a Disney Curiosity Creates grant. The grant is administered by the Association for Library Services to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
  • Shadow.salon
    LEARNING THE ROPES—Kristy Castillo (left), co-owner of Mane Street Salon, works with Kendal Kuhn as Sierra Orner takes a phone call. The two Morenci Area High School juniors spent Friday at the salon as part of a job shadowing experience.
  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.

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