2017 Neighborhoods USA Tour

Photos by Kyle Muschall

Our tour starts at the home of Walter (Skip) and Jackie Thompson 309 South 8th Street.Part of the Bayliss West Neighborhood Association


Our Neighborhood USA (NUSA) guests have arrived by bus and starting to disembark


Jackie and Skip greet our NUSA guests on their front porch to start the tour


Corey Peters and Sharon Babbitt, two of our tour organizers, bring up the rear as a NUSA guest snaps photos of Jackie and Skips house


From Left: Jackie, Corey, Sharon and Dave Huggins having a quick chat about the drive over from Omaha


NUSA guests marvel at the kitchen


Skip shares details of his home in one of the upper bedrooms


Skip relates when the house was once renovated in the past they used a product called “Oak Carpet”. Large rolls of thin oak planks


Jackie answers questions from NUSA guests


Skip pointing out pocket doors off the bedroom


NUSA guests descend the grand staircase as Skip wraps up his house tour


Our next stop is the home of Wayne Andersen 301 South 8th Street. A short walk from Skip and Jackie’s home


Wayne Andersen, on the far right, greets our NUSA guests into his home


Sharon, on the far left, gathers up the NUSA guests in the entryway


Wayne pointing out ornamental details on his plaster ceiling


Wayne answering questions in his living room


NUSA guests chatting amongst themselves and marveling at Wayne’s lavish home


Sharon chats with one of our NUSA guests


Wayne, in the kitchen, relates to our NUSA guests about how servants used to live and work in the house


Corey, between the bushes, leads the NUSA group back to the bus


Before leaving Wayne’s property two of the NUSA guests spot one of Council Bluff’s famous Black Squirrels and just have to take a photo of him


The group pause under the shade to say goodbye’s to skip and Jackie before boarding the tour bus


Everyone back on the bus and we’re off to our next stop the Gibraltar Neighborhood


Corey sharing historical facts and stories as we drive thru the Gibraltar Neighborhood Association


Sharon providing some commentary on local historical figures

The Grenville M. Dodge House of Council Bluffs, 605 South 3rd Street. A national historic landmark


Corey Nielsen, the Director of the Dodge House, greets NUSA tourists from the main staircase to give a short history of this national historic treasure


NUSA guests are then allowed to roam the three stories, and full basement, of the opulent home museum


NUSA guests on the third floor ball room where numerous celebrations and events have taken place over the last hundred years


NUSA guests inspect the many artifacts of the Dodge Family in the basement


Corey shares some of the life and details of General Dodge and his illustrious career building the Union Pacific Railroad


Corey going over some of the artifacts that General Dodge had in his office


Corey telling NUSA guests of the Dodge Family’s long history with Council Bluffs


Corey and Wayne chat in the shade while the NUSA guests finish up


Sharon urging the NUSA guests back on the bus after the General Dodge House Tour


Our next stop is the Bregant House, 517 South 4th Street


We didn’t have time to tour the Bregant House so Corey informs us of the history of the home of Jean and Inez Bregant who were perfectly proportioned “little people”. Jean was 46 inches tall, Inez was 42 inches. The house was custom built for them in 1912


NUSA guests arrive at Bayliss Park, Council Bluff’s central square


It is just a short walk across the street to the Spaghetti feed at the Mason’s Lodge, 130 South 6th Street


A big crowd at the Mason’s Spaghetti feed


Dave paying for all NUSA tour attendee’s dinners


NUSA guests queueing thru the cafeteria line


NUSA guests topping off their dinners


NUSA guests looking for open tables to sit


NUSA guests settling in for a nice meal


Wayne bringing up the rear of our little coterie


NUSA guests and our tour guides finishing up their meal. This is the halfway point in our tour. A little nourishment to keep us going


The new Bayliss Park Fountain


NUSA guests marveling at the fountain


Wayne taking a quick break and conversing with one of our NUSA guests Diana Ruiz


Dave putting out the call to our tour attendees to start heading back to the bus and Sharon leading the way


Dave leading this portion of the tour as he directs people’s attention to homes within the Fairmount Park Neighborhood Association


As we shuffle off the bus, Wayne points out the home of Bill Mann and Bob Pashek, upper right corner. One of the majestic homes in the Fairmount Park Neighborhood Association. Unfortunately a scheduling conflict didn’t allow for a tour


Our next stop is the home of Dave and Marie Huggins, 150 Park Avenue. Yes, that Dave Huggins, one of our lovely tour guides


Dave begins to impart his history with the home and purchasing it back in the 80’s


Marie Huggins, fourth from the left, greets NUSA guests into her home


NUSA guests admire the Huggins home as they relate the extensive renovations they’ve done over the years


Marie in the kitchen sharing details of various remodels


A NUSA guests chats with Dave as Dave recounts how his home got put on the National Registry of Historical Houses


NUSA guests stroll down Park Avenue to our final destination


Our final stop. 134 Park Avenue


NUSA guests make their way into 134 Park Avenue under the Fairmount Park Neighborhood Association Banner


John Huggins, yes Dave’s brother, shares photos of the current renovation of 134 Park that is underway by the two of them.


NUSA guests were then encouraged to roam the three floors and see the work in progress on bringing this great home back to life


NUSA guests gather on the front porch


Wayne sharing his vast historical knowledge with NUSA guests


Your friendly neighborhood photographer documenting the NUSA tour of 2017. This photo was sent to me by Diana Ruiz one of our NUSA guests from the tour


Marie pointing out other homes of interest on Park Avenue to our NUSA guests


The long processional of NUSA guests and tour guides back to the bus. With our last stop home tour complete it’s a short bus ride back to Omaha to finish off the tour



Our 2017 NUSA tour guests and guides pose for a group picture on the steps of the Dodge House. An historic occasion with our historic homes. Good times and great people. We are thrilled that we could share this little piece of Council Bluffs with folks from all across America.