Harpers Are Recipients of City’s Fourth Spirit of Union Award

She’s lived here all her life and wouldn’t have it any other way. In fact, when Darla Harper and her husband Scott Harper were hunting for a lot on which to build a house, they looked solely in Union. That was four years ago, and today, what was once a bare tract of land is now the site of the Harpers’ dream home.

Their attention to detail—especially in their beautiful landscaping—helped the Harpers garner the City’s fourth Spirit of Union Award.

The Harpers, of 107 Shaw Road, built their country-style home with wraparound porch in 1995. Darla, who is a stay-at-home Mom to children Ambre and Matt, spends much of her spare time decorating and landscaping. “My husband teases me that I must be the only person in Union who changes her entire house—inside and out—with each of the seasons,” Darla said.

Indeed, inside her home, she changes the curtains and slipcovers to reflect the different times of year. Outside, the yard takes on a new look every winter, spring, summer, and fall. As this autumn approaches, Darla plans to create a harvest theme by adding cornstalks, bales of straw, pumpkins, and gourds to the porch and yard area. With the Christmas holidays, Scott strings up lots of lights to accompany Darla’s wreaths. Spring and summer bring bounties of perennial and annual flowers.

Passersby may recognize the Harper home by its ever-present goat cart in the front yard. The cart, made by people of German descent, was once used to take goats to market.

The season themes, the gardening, the landscaping—all of these activities add up to people who know how to make a house a home. For this reason, the City of Union’s Park Board awards Darla and Scott Harper the Spirit of Union Award.