Every year, the Builders Association of South Central Oklahoma (BASCO) opens hundreds of houses across the metro area for the public to tour as part of its Festival of Homes. Formerly the Norman Builders Association, Inc., the organization that got its start in 1949 includes Cleveland, McClain, Garvin and Grady Counties.

The association keeps members up to date on ongoing changes in the industry, improvements in construction materials and techniques through local, state and national educational programs. 

BASCO executive officer Dana Kelso can’t say for sure how long the festival has been running, but she said it’s been a long time. 

“I found some clippings from 1960 in The Norman Transcript. One of the houses from a previous festival is in my neighborhood,” Kelso said. “This year, we’re also partnering with the Moore Homebuilders Association from pretty much south of I-240. So, they’re going to have a pretty big showing, too.”

This year, builders from across the metro will open their doors to an expected 12,000-plus visitors June 5-7 and 12-14 to give the public a peek at the latest trends in home building. About 30 homes will be on display for people looking for design ideas and, for some, a new house to call their own. 

“They can look, feel, see and touch and decide what they like,” board president and homebuilder Tony Foust said.

The crown jewel of the festival is the Festival Show Home, a high-ceilinged manor style house in the Hallbrooke addition at 2017 Providence Drive courtesy of Da Vinci Homes.

It’s a 4,000- plus square foot palace with 4 bedrooms, two media rooms, a study, a grand family room and a mixed-use area. It even has a state-of-the art geothermal system for heating and cooling. 

“This is the pinnacle show home for the association. It has a very grand look from the exterior. The interior is an old-world contemporary themed home. We’re only using contemporary colors, but the woodwork and things that are going into it give a very comforting feel,” Foust said. “Whoever walks in here, we want them to think ‘This feels like home. I could live here.’”

It has a European-inspired kitchen and a full stone fireplace, high ceiling beams and intricate woodwork. 

“It will be a very open and entertaining home,” Foust said. “There’s plenty of space if you have children that are growing. We have what could be playrooms upstairs. If you’re downstairs and older and you want your theater room downstairs, we have that as well. So, the home was designed to fit any family at any time.

“When I design a home, that’s what I’m looking for and that’s what it’s going to afford that family that ends up purchasing it.”

The Festival Show Home is a collaborative effort on behalf of BASCO members, who come together, providing supplies and assistance to make an amazing house for the benefit of the organization.

Proceeds from the sale of the house go to fund the nonprofit association and its vocational-technical scholarship programs aimed at helping students who want to go into the home construction field. 

“We have several builders participating. The (Festival Show Home) is our charity house. The proceeds from this home go to fund our scholarships and things we do as an organization to give back to the community. So, all our members contribute by giving donations and discounts to try and maximize the profitability of the home when it sells.”

The Festival Show Home is for sale. Foust estimates the house will sell for upwards of $600,000 and provide a great home for years to come, while simultaneously helping someone pay for school.

It’s a symbiotic master work worth exploring. And even though the owners-to-be can’t move in until after the show, it may be worth the wait. 

For more information, visit basco.com and pick up the BASCO design book at 7-11 stores starting Memorial Day weekend. 

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