This year's Haus und Garten Tour will be edged in silver -- the silver screen, that is.
The annual tour's 2013 theme is "Reel Life: German Village," a nod to the movie industry.
Participants in the 54th annual tour, slated for June 30, are asked to be pictured with their favorite fixture in their home and garden as part of a storytelling display.
The PreTour event also has a cinematic theme: "Lights, Camera, Dinner."
"That gives dinner hosts a lot of different things to think about -- dinner menu, character theme," said Shiloh Todorov, director of the German Village Society. "The door is wide open there. Some people will even encourage costumes."
Tour officials have identified 10 properties so far, eight homes and two gardens.
The goal is to get 13 properties on the tour this year, Todorov said. Two gardens and one house are along Schiller Park.
"We always feel like Schiller Park is the heart of the community, so it's just nice to give people reasons to spend some time not only in the park but also parkside," she said.
Tickets, which are $20 in advance and $25 the day of the tour, go on sale March 14 at germanvillagetour.com.
Raffle tickets, which cost $5 each or three for $10, qualify participants for up to $5,000 worth of home-improvement services.
Tour organizers are rolling out two new programs this year to keep select patrons moving quickly through the lines and to help comfortably transport small groups of people to tour spots.
Those who don't want to bake the hot summer sun can spend an additional $50 on the Autobahn pass, which will allow attendants to jump to the front of lines.
For an extra $500, a party of five can hop aboard a chauffeured golf cart.
"The Haus und Garten Tour, after 54 years of successfully wooing people to the village to see award-winning design, always has to reinvent itself a little to stay fresh," Todorov said. "I love this year's Autobahn and chauffeured golf carts to make 2013 newly special, even if you've been joining us for decades at this event."