House of the Week: With its distinctive 18-foot turret, this Oswego home was designed for family gatherings

Tray Ling

OSWEGO, N.Y. – Family is very important to Dan and Cindy Mather of Oswego. “It is all about family with us,” Cindy said, “and it always has been.” In 1991, when they were designing what would become their wonderfully unique home at 43 Lakeshore Road, across the street from Lake […]

OSWEGO, N.Y. – Family is very important to Dan and Cindy Mather of Oswego.

“It is all about family with us,” Cindy said, “and it always has been.”

In 1991, when they were designing what would become their wonderfully unique home at 43 Lakeshore Road, across the street from Lake Ontario, creating a house with a great family atmosphere for hosting holidays, birthdays, surprise parties, and baby showers was foremost in their thoughts.

“It is definitely a family home,” she said. “We have had so many great family events there.”

Dan and Cindy purchased the property in 1988 and then began drawing up the plans themselves, with the help of Cindy’s high school and college friend, Bill Lafferty.

They started a notebook, jotting down thoughts and ideas as they came to them.

“Can we make this happen?” the couple often asked themselves. “Is this doable?”

“I think we got it mostly right,” Dan said.

They call their five-bedroom, house a “unicorn” and it is certainly not your typical home.

The couple wanted a home that blended the “old-time feel and warmth” of an older house, blended with the modern conveniences of today, including lots of storage and entertaining space.

To get the feel just right, the couple visited antique stores and festivals, and made inquiries with demolition companies.

The sunlight “sparkles” through the home’s many antique windows and the family room’s gas fireplace has a vintage mantel piece from a demolished Syracuse home from 1900.

A balcony, with a built-in library, extends over the room.

The most prominent feature is the 18-foot-tall turret, with multiple built-in window seats, each with cushions sewed by Cindy herself, at the base.

This one-of-a-kind feature is the perfect place to hold baby showers and celebrate Christmas mornings. In fact, a sixteen-foot Christmas tree comes with the house.

The space also has a wet bar with a tropical fish tank built inside the bar.

(This detail was a compromise between Dan, who wanted a bar in the family room, and Cindy, who wanted a fish tank. There was only space for one, so they came up with this clever plan.)

Cindy loves her huge kitchen, where she said they spend much of their time.

With double ovens, a wall of pantry storage, and a large center island which makes buffet lines easy, extending from the kitchen’s dining area through the dining room and front parlor.

Pocket doors can separate the parlor, where their daughter played on the piano located there, from the family room.

Cindy also loves the screened-in front porch where they enjoy outdoor dining.

“It is just like having a date without leaving the property,” she said.

Dan likes the “handy” home office with its built-in cabinetry.

The house also includes a beautiful master suite, with window seats lined with cedar, a laundry room, where Cindy works on craft projects, and a full walk-up attic for storage.

The full basement has a home gym, even more storage, and a bonus room. Dan has learned to read music and keeps a drum kit in the space.

After a long day of work, the couple enjoy their private back deck, which includes a hot tub, under a gazebo, which they enjoy all year long.

After 30 years at their home, they have decided the time has come to downsize.

Dan admits that the feeling is “bittersweet” to sell the place that they “poured their heart and soul in.”

But they hope that a large family buys it and continues the entertaining legacy of their “unicorn.”

The couple plan to remain in Oswego.

For more information about this property, please contact Realtor Ed Fayette of Century 21 Galloway Realty. His contact information is below.


Address: 43 Lakeshore Road, Oswego, N.Y. 13126

Price: $429,900

Size: 3,611 square feet

Acreage: 0.77 acres

Monthly Mortgage: $1,500 (based on this week’s national average rate of 3.27 percent, according to Freddie Mac, for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with a 20 percent down payment. Fees and points not included.)

Taxes: $10,966 (Based on assessed value of $334,000)

Built: 1991

School District: Oswego

Kitchen: The huge kitchen is among Cindy Mather’s favorite rooms. She says it is super convenient for large parties. Guests can pass through the dining room into the kitchen in buffet lines. There is a dining area just off the big center island. It has a wall of pantry storage space and a convenient desk for doing bills, writing recipes, and reading cookbooks. The appliances, including double ovens, are all less than ten years old.

Living spaces: There is a lot of room in this house for entertaining. Family and hosting big events were in the owner’s minds when they were designing their house 30 years ago. The front parlor and dining room can seat 30 people. The family room has a gas fireplace and a wet bar, with a tropical fish tank built in. The distinctive 18-foot turret has built-in window seats and is great for Christmas morning. A Christmas tree comes with the house. A first-floor laundry room also serves as a craft/sewing room. A “handy” home office has built-in cabinetry. There is a balcony which looks over the family room and turret has built-in bookshelves. The home was designed to have an old-fashioned feel and warmth, mixed with modern conveniences.

Bedrooms: There are five bedrooms in the house. The master bedroom has double walk-in closets and a window-seat, lined with cedar.

Bathroom: The home has three full bathrooms and one half-bath. The master has a coffee station, double sinks, and a Jacuzzi tub with a shower.

Basement and attic: The partially finished basement and walk-up attic are as long as the house, giving additional storage space. Each has a full bonus room. Dan Mather has a drum kit in the room in the basement and there is room for a home gym.

Outdoors: Cindy calls the neighborhood “wonderful” and enjoys walking its roads. Lake Ontario is across the street and she loves the flowers and birds of the area. A wildlife habitat is just down the street. The property is just 5 minutes or so from downtown Oswego. SUNY Oswego is just one mile to the west. The home has a two-car garage. The screened-in front porch is great for outdoor dining. The private back deck has a gazebo with a hot tub underneath. The home has many recently updated features, including new skylights, new windows, on-demand hot water, two new furnaces, a Leafguard gutter system, and a new home generator.

Agent: Ed Fayette

Century 21 Galloway Realty

Address: 120 East 1st Street, Suite 3A, Oswego, N.Y. 13126

Phone: (315) 402-3655

Email: [email protected]


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