CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - A community pep rally on Thursday will help energize the Channel 3 viewing area for the Big Heart extreme home makeover project while collecting food for the Chattanooga Area Food Bank. Channel 3 has partnered with the food bank for more than 25 years during its annual Share Your Christmas food drive.

The builders and the senior producer for ABC's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" will be in attendance.

The invitation encourages you and your family to take some non-perishable food items to The Chattanoogan Hotel on February 3rd at 6:30 pm. The UTC marching band and cheerleaders will be on hand as well as the Mountain Cove Bluegrass Band.

Senior Producer Milan Vasic will give a presentation about the show and Vision Homes owners Craig Smith and Jason Willard will give you a glimpse of their plans to build a deserving family's home in just one week.  The event is free to the public.

"We've been told time and time again that this project won't only change a family, it will change our community," Smith said, when he announced the Pep Rally date.

"We're about to embark on a really, really big thing, and it's going to take all of us working together to get it done. I'm praying The Chattanoogan will be standing room only that night."

The Pep Rally also marks the official kick-off of the community's "Extreme Food Drive" to benefit the Chattanooga Area Food Bank. The goal of the drive is to raise at least 310,000 pounds of food to help supplement the organization's Emergency Food Box program, which provides at least 1 million pounds of food a year to the needy in our area.

Items in need include oatmeal, grits, flour, baked beans, peas, corn, green beans, peanut butter and pasta. You can learn more about the Emergency Food Box program by visiting the Food Bank's website at

Channel 3 Eyewitness News as well as our partners at the Times Free Press and US-101 will keep you informed. Channel 3 will have a crew at the pep rally and will keep you informed every step of the way. We will take you behind the scenes of the build daily and help you tell your story. Click here for a link to our official Big Hearts extreme home makeover sections with extra information just for the community.