Common Questions

General Guest Information

The tour is on Columbus Day weekend every year - October 11, 12 & 13th, 2019. 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.

Tickets

Online tickets are available from the website. Paper tickets will be available at Ticket Outlets (The General Store on Scruggs Road, Lakescapes Nursery on Rt. 40, and SML Visitor Center at Bridgewater Plaza) from on July 1 to October 4. Tickets will be available for purchase at any of the homes during Tour weekend.
Early bird tickets (online only) cost $X. Beginning July 1, the cost will be $X. On Tour weekend, tickets will be $X.
The purpose of putting a name on the ticket is so that you can be found in the event you leave your ticket somewhere (like at the ticket table). You may put the same name on every ticket if necessary. No one will be checking the name on the ticket when you visit a home.
Absolutely not. The published ticket price is the price you pay. There are no additional fees. All credit card processing fees and ticket vendor fees are paid by the Smith Mountain Lake Charity Home Tour.
Simply cross out your name and put their name on the ticket. No one will be checking the name on the ticket against your identity. It is simply there to facilitate finding you in the event that your ticket is left somewhere on the Tour.
You need to bring a ticket of some sort to the home. That can be a paper ticket (preferable). If you choose to rely on the ticket on your phone, please be aware that cellular phone service can be very spotty at the lake and may not be available at the home you are visiting. If you want to use your phone, we highly suggest taking a screen shot of the QR code (the square bar code on your ticket) and storing that on your phone as a picture. This will allow you to have access to your ticket even if there is no cellular service at a particular home.
Yes. If you are purchasing a ticket at a Ticket Outlet or at a Tour Home, you must pay by cash or check. We do not have the ability to accept credit cards at the ticket outlets or the homes. If you really want to use a credit card, then please purchase the ticket online prior to going to the first home.
This is a common problem for boaters. It also can be an issue if it is raining. We suggest folding your paper ticket so the QR code (the square bar code on your ticket) is on the top, and putting your ticket inside a clear zip lock bag. The barcode can be read with our scanners though the bag.
Unfortunately no. To get the lower pricing, 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 that confirmation email, please call us (540-297-8687) 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 friend who might be able to go.
You may go to any of the homes on the Tour and purchase a ticket at the home (cash or check only, no credit cards accepted). All the Tour homes have tickets for sale.
If you have a smart phone, then the answer is yes. You may purchase the ticket online using your smart phone and have the ticket sent to your phone. We would recommend then taking a screen shot of the QR code (the square bar code on your ticket) and storing that on your phone as a picture. This will allow you to have access to your ticket even if there is no cellular service at a particular home. Please do this before going to your first home, as there may not be cellular service at the particular home.
There are multiple ways. If you are buying a ticket, 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 click on "Donate." 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.

Parking

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.
On this website, see the information under the Sponsors tab. You may also call us at 540-297-8687 if you need more information or further assistance.
On this website, see the information under the Sponsors tab. You may also call us at 540-297-8687 if you need more information or further assistance.
On this website, see the information under the Sponsors tab. You may also call us at 540-297-8687 if you need more information or further assistance.

Charities

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.

Volunteers

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, send us an email (Contact Us under the More tab on the Home page), or call 540-297-8687. 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.

Homeowners

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 build 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 charityhometour@gmail.com or call (540)-297-8687. Leave us a message with your name, the location of your home, and a little about the home.