General Guest Information
The tour is during Columbus Day weekend every year. Homes are open from 10 AM to 5 PM Friday and Saturday and from 1 PM to 5 PM on Sunday.
Unfortunately not. Since these are private homes, they are not required to meet accessibility requirements. We do have special parking closer to the homes if walking is a problem.
No. Children under twelve, including babies in arms or carriers, are not permitted in the homes.
The Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour is the community fund drive to support critical services for those in need in the Smith Mountain Lake region in southwest Virginia. The Tour accomplishes this through partnerships with volunteers, charities, businesses and individuals.
Eight total, located in Franklin and Bedford counties, bordering Smith Mountain Lake. Only tour in the nation where all homes can be accessed by car or by boat.
Each of eight participating charities provides volunteers to help administer the Tour and receives a share of the proceeds, which come from business and individual donations, as well as ticket sales. Participating charitable organizations qualify by delivering services to people in need in the Smith Mountain Lake area. The Tour has provided $4 million to local charity operations.
Smith Mountain Lake offers visitors more than 500 miles of shoreline, 22,000 acres of water, and hundreds of converging rivers, creeks and coves to explore and enjoy. Scenic shorelines range from manicured lakefront lawns to steep bluffs, breathtaking views of Smith Mountain and other surrounding peaks. More information on the lake and its surrounds is available at the SML Chamber of Commerce website www.visitsmithmountainlake.com. Request a Visitors Guide at 540-721-1203 or view the digital version online
No. The tour goes on rain or shine.
It can be done, but you don’t get much time to spend at each home.
Children under 12 and babies in arms or carriers are not allowed. No photography, smoking, food, drink, or pets are allowed in the homes. Please ladies, do not wear high heels which may damage floors.
The Home Tour Guide will be included in the Laker Weekly in the Labor Day Special at all Laker Weekly outlets, including their email to 100,000 subscribers. After that week it will be at local outlets such as Kroger, Food Lion, local mini marts and gas stations, along with SML Chamber of Commerce and Lakescapes.
Online tickets will be available from the Home page of this website through Tour weekend. Beginning July 1 , paper tickets will also be available for cash or check only at the Smith Mountain Lake Visitor Center during their regular operating hours through Tour weekend. The Visitor Center is located in Bridgewater Plaza (16430 Booker T Washington Hwy, Moneta, VA 24121).
A Convenience Fee to cover credit card processing fees (3.5%) and TicketSpice services ($0.99) will be added to each ticket for E-Ticket purchases. This ensures that 100% of the proceeds benefit our Tour's charities.
Either will work, however, you may want to print your ticket as cellular service can be spotty around the lake. We will be scanning the QR code (square bar code) on your ticket. We can scan a paper ticket or the QR code image on your smart phone. If using your phone, we suggest taking a screen shot of the QR code (square bar code) and saving it to your photos so you have access to your ticket even if there is no cellular service at a particular home.
This can be a problem for boaters or if it is raining. We suggest placing your paper ticket inside a clear zip lock bag with the QR code (square bar code) visible. Our scanners can read the code through a clear bag.
Unfortunately, no. To get the lower price, the tickets need to be purchased before the deadline.
You should still have a confirmation email regarding your purchase. There is a link in the confirmation email that will allow you to reprint your tickets. If you can’t find your confirmation email, please email us at [email protected] and we will resend your confirmation email.
Unfortunately, no; however, you may claim the full value of your purchase as a charitable deduction on your taxes since you will not be going to the Tour. Alternatively, you could give the tickets to a family member or friend.
You may purchase tickets online at this website or in person at the SML Visitor Center at Bridgewater Plaza during Tour weekend. Our Ticket Team will also be available to assist you with ticket purchases at the homes during the Tour.
If you have a smart phone, you may purchase the ticket online using your credit card and email or text the ticket to your phone. Please be aware that cellular service can be spotty around the lake; therefore, we suggest taking a screen shot of the QR code (square bar code) and saving it to your photos so you have access to your ticket even if there is no cellular service at a particular home.
There are multiple ways. If you are buying a ticket online, there is an option to donate when you pay for your ticket. If you are not purchasing a ticket, you may return to the Home page of this website and click on "Donate." Alternatively, you may write a check made out to the SML Charity Home Tour and send it to PO Box 416, Moneta, Virginia 24121.
We have limited parking spaces available near the home for those with special needs. Tell the traffic greeter you need to be parked near the home and the greeter will give you a yellow placard to put in your windshield. Please return the placard when you leave. Also note that the homes are not handicapped accessible.
Follow the directions by boat in the Tour guide or from this website. As your get near the home, look for an orange flag on the dock. Please follow instructions from our dock volunteers.
We provide directions starting at Hales Ford Bridge. Since most tour guests arrive by car, the numbers on the Tour Guide are organized for a logical one-day car trip. A second set of numbers outlines the easiest route by boat.
Sponsors and Patrons/Donors
There are multiple ways. If you are buying a ticket online, there is a spot to add an optional donation when you pay for your ticket. If you are not purchasing a ticket, you may return to the Home page of this website and go to the Sponsors tab. Click on donate now. Alternatively, you may write a check made out to the Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour and send it to PO Box 416, Moneta, Virginia 24121.
A business is defined as an entity that files taxes as an LLC., INC., or sole proprietorship. All other sponsors are considered patrons.
Yes, all eight are assigned as well as an an alternate. We would be happy to consider your charity for next year's Tour.
If you would like to be a future participating charity, please complete the application posted on this website which you can access from the Charities tab.
An independent selection committee reviews all applications and together, makes their final selections according to SML Charity Home Tour requirements.
There are 5 criteria that must be met: 1. The charity must possess a 501(c) 3 tax-exempt status. 2. The charity must provide services to the SML geographic area. 3. Each charity chosen must be prepared to supply 5 key volunteers. 4. Your charity representative will be asked to attend a check distribution event to inform those in attendance how the charity proceeds will be utilized. 5. At the December kick-off event, each charity will be required to execute a Participation Agreement which you can find on the website. More in depth information on these criteria is included in the Application Protocol document on our website.
There are many ways to help - before, during, and after Tour weekend. The SMLCHT Board oversees the planning of the Tour, including choosing the homes and charities, soliciting donations, generating publicity and advertising, determining traffic flow and parking, setting up the homes, and so much more. Fresh ideas are always welcome! Contact any Board member or send us an email at [email protected]. We will be happy to find a place for you to help.
On Tour weekend we need almost 1,000 volunteers! Help with parking, at the boat dock, taking tickets, as a host or hostess inside the house - there’s a job for everyone!
You must be 18 years of age to volunteer. You may contact any of the participating charities if you would like to help a specific charity or help at a particular home. If you are willing to help where you are most needed, you can sign up on this website - under the More tab, click on Volunteer.
Yes, but we are already signing contracts with homeowners for next year's Tour.
There are really no set requirements. We look for homes that we feel people would enjoy viewing, both newly built or remodeled. Unique features, great views, easy access by land and water, and availability of supporting sponsors are all items we consider.
You can email us at [email protected] with your name, the location of your home, and a little about the home.