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If you ever get the opportunity to be part of an Extreme Makeover: Home Edition we believe you’ll enjoy the adventure… and it is just that. It’s an adventure for spectators, volunteers and anyone else involved.
We feel fortunate that a family we knew (See Ryanne Carr in the Miracles Among Us section of the website) was chosen to have a new home created for them while they vacationed in Hawaii.
The TV crew and stars, along with the local builder, press and law enforcement officials gathered in the crispy cold early morning approximately 20 miles from Mike and Katrina Carr’s residence near Mineola.
And though it was to be a secret for the Carrs, there numbers of folks gathered along the route, waving at the bus and almost mile-long entourage as it crept toward the Carr’s, slow enough for some filming to be done.
Then it was time for the show’s star Ty Pennington to get on his bullhorn and announce to the Carrs that they were the chosen family.
He did so more than once, it is TV after all, and as the week progressed there were reminders everywhere that the neighborhood had become a movie set that turned the front yards, back yards and the street, into a small army of trucks, tents and barricades.
Some neighbors took advantage of the offer to “get out of Dodge” and stay in a hotel for the week. Others chose to stick it out.
Spectators, volunteers and press all shared something. They rode in from remote parking in vans driven by even more volunteers.
The original house went down under the crushing blows of heavy equipment on Friday, several trees were removed and the concrete was poured overnight and in approximately three hours the building of the new home began.
The spectators included a mayor, more than one judge, a state representative, a police chief, and law enforcement from several agencies and communities. It was “the place” to be for one week in Wood County.
We’ve attempted to show in pictures a bit of the atmosphere that surrounded the event. Those interested enough, could sit at home all night and watch the building on their computer thanks to a local television station, KLTV in Tyler.
Then it was time for the family to return and several thousand “extras” … spectators, showed up and waited for the arrival.
The actual “move that bus” is filmed more than once to make sure they get it right for TV and each time the crowd reacts appropriately but when the family finally arrived the energy increased and it’s hard to imagine using any of the earlier takes.