Schiller Park, now in full bloom, will be the backdrop for this year's PreTour cocktail party, to be held under a tent.

Considered the crown jewel of German Village, the park will be the epicenter of drinks and conversation between 4:30 and 6 p.m. June 23.

The soiree was moved out of the Meeting Haus last year to City Park Avenue, which was closed between Stewart and Reinhard avenues.

"This year we're taking it out of the street and we're moving it into the park," said Tracie Stamm, organizer of the PreTour, which always precedes the Haus und Garten Tour by a day.

"It is a downtown urban neighborhood and the park was meant to be a focal point in the neighborhood."

PreTour tickets are $175 each and cocktail party-only tickets are $100 each. Tickets are available at

Those who opt for the more expensive PreTour package get a seat at one of 19 private dinners or four participating restaurants -- G. Michael's Bistro, Barcelona, Valter's at Maennerchor and South Village Grille.

After the cocktail party, patrons will get a first-hand look at the 13 sites on the tour this year. PreTour participants get to see the entire house. Those on the actual tour are shown the first floor only.

Participants will adjourn the tour at 8:15 p.m. and join their dinner parties, all of which start at 8:30 p.m. When they purchase their tickets, guests must indicate their top four choices. Some dinner venues might be sold out and patrons will have to dine at another choice. PreTour dinner menus are available online at

Schiller Park also will be site for one of the private dinners -- another first for the PreTour.

Christine and Steven Schillinger, with friends Meghan Conrad and Michael Carey, will host the tent dinner, "A Gatsby Night Under the Stars," at which patrons are invited to dress up in period apparel. It is a riff on this year's Haus und Garten theme, "Expect the Unexpected."

The party will seat 60 people.

"It will be a nice fun atmosphere in the park," Christine Schillinger said.

The dinner will have a 1920s motif, with food and drinks to match, she said.

It will be the second time the Schillingers have hosted a dinner in their 2 1/2 years living in The Village.

"It was wonderful," said Schillinger, whose house also was featured on a recent tour. "It was a great way to meet people who love the village as much as we do."

"I would say the German Haus und Garten PreTour event offers the chance to experience German Village like you live here," Stamm added.

"It's the opportunity to see German Village from the inside and support one of Columbus' oldest historic neighborhoods."

Haus und Garten Tour

The actual Haus und Garten Tour will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 24.

Tickets are $20 if purchased in advance at or at the Meeting Haus, 588 S. Third St. Additionally, tickets are available for $18 at all central Ohio Giant Eagle locations. They can be purchased for $25 on the day of the tour.

New this year is the Sunday brunch from 9 to 11:30 a.m. tour day in Schiller Park.

Katzinger's Delicatessen, LA Catering and Two Caterers will provide a breakfast bar coupled with mimosa and bloody Mary beverages for $15, which includes breakfast and one drink. Drinks alone can be purchased for $5 each.