The Story Behind Stonegate Manor


Stonegate Manor is the retirement adventure of Thomas Nelson and Prudy Barrett Nelson. Tom was the Chief Judge when he retired and served 21 years as a Family Court Judge. Prudy was a pediatrician in the area for 30 years.

Prudy sat down and shared her story with Kathy Bumgardner from

“A few years back, Prudy decided she needed to do something a bit more joyful, something that might even help uplift others. As a collector of vintage china (she had amassed quite a collection) Prudy made the decision to open ‘My Mother’s Attic’, a vintage china and tableware rental company in Southwest Michigan. Continuing her passion to help others, all proceeds from the rentals went to support education and orphans in SW Uganda.

A couple of years later, an acquaintance of Prudy’s shared her vision of creating a classically elegant wedding venue on an estate that was for sale in the area. Her contagious enthusiasm prompted Prudy and her husband Tom to jump on board. It began as a relationship where Tom would provide financial backing for someone else’s project but eventually evolved into full ownership of this beautiful venue which was certainly an unexpected twist in retirement.”

When Stonegate is closed for the season, Prudy functions as a Disaster Response physician and public health consultant.  She recently traveled to Bangladesh where she spent a month responding to the Rohingya genocide and later spent a month in Ecuador.

To read more about Prudy and Tom and Stonegate’s history, read the full article on