UPDATED: Interviews each day with volunteers at Big Hearts site - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATED: Interviews each day with volunteers at Big Hearts site

Volunteer Holly Beth Zuckerman Volunteer Holly Beth Zuckerman

By WRCB Staff

February 16, 2011

ROSSVILLE (WRCB) - Another volunteer, Patricia Suddeth, shared her experience with Channel 3 Eyewitness News. Suddeth noticed how positive everyone is around the site.

As soon as I heard they would be coming to our home area I knew I would do anything to be a part in making this happen. I had in mind the TV show of course. I wanted to be one hold something to be nailed in or working on a project going into the finish project along with wanting to work side by side with the stars of the show Ty, Ed, Eduardo, Leigh Anne and Xzibit. But after signing in and getting to the volunteer area on site I began to see just because I volunteered that don't mean I'm going to be doing hard labor on the house. Picking trash up around the house taking drinks to all the construction workers and something as small as cheering yelling and clapping for the REAL STARS of the show the builders inside and out of the house, the caterers of the food for everyone even the porta potty cleaners. Yeah funny I thought but really this stuff has to be done and we are doing such a big part even just standing here cheering them on. All volunteers were treated like stars offered more food then we could eat free massages in between work.
As many people there are inside the home and surrounding the home no matter how many times I stepped in the way or bumped shoulders with someone never did anyone say "move" ," watch out". " your in the way." Always it was "thank you"," your fine", " great job", always positive. There is so much great things I great things I could say to the opportunity of a life time, but it's so hard to put in to words but THANK YOU for allowing me to be a small part of this of this big help for the family!!!!


February 15, 2011

ROSSVILLE (WRCB) - Kelly Sullivan was able to help on the house and get a look at the production of the show. Here's an excerpt of the interview with Channel 3 Eyewitness News:

This afternoon was amazing! I was amazed at all of the behind the scenes activity that goes into making a show. When I first got on set, we spent a lot of time in the fenced in area for the volunteers. After being picked to help with the taping of a scene, I and my best friend were so excited! We went to the Production area and waited some more. A lot of time was spent waiting to film a shot with Leigh Anne, only to run out of daylight so they will have to re-shoot it tomorrow. We became "helpers" in another scene with all five designers. This is when I realized just how much TV magic happens on the show. A lot of the real volunteer work is spent sweeping, gathering trash and delivering food/drinks to workers. The volunteers are treated very well while on site. The food that they serve was excellent. You could even get a massage while in the holding area!

At the beginning, I and my friend were very star struck when you start seeing Ty, Ed, Eduardo, Leigh Anne and Xzibit walking by. You think that they wouldn't say hi or really even acknowledge that the volunteers were even there, but they stopped and waved and would talk to you like you were their friend. The designers were very funny. The atmosphere on site was amazing. I can truly say that this experience left me wanting to really help build a house so I am sure that I will try and help build a Habitat for Humanity house next. This opportunity to help a wonderful family can also open up someone's heart to where they will begin to volunteer more on a local level. I will never forget this experience and I feel truly blessed to have been given the chance to volunteer.


February 15, 2011

ROSSVILLE (WRCB) - Here's an excerpt from our interview with Anthony Grimes, a volunteer who attended the Big Hearts pep rally, who made a decision to get involved.

My wife and I were invited by our good friends Heather and Rodney Guffey to attend the Big Hearts Pep Rally. We listened to the stories and how the show came to being. We also heard that the producers saw this as the greatest job ever because they get to work on a television series that helps other people.

When the producers mentioned they needed mattresses we knee we had a way of making that happen. We were able to work the 8-2 shift on Monday. It was amazing getting to help Ty and his crew film that segment and we also carried water and Tammy helped serve lunch but the best part was this. I was asked why my wife and myself was doing all that I we were doing? They mentioned that nothing I was donating was going to benefit my me or my company. Well, that made me stop and think, why was I so passionate about this cause? The answer I gave him was this," God has been very good to my family and myself.  He has blessed my in so many ways I can't start to name them. So from Katrina to the Fort Oglethorpe flood victims to now little Patrick to whatever is next, our blessing comes from giving. Thanks. 


February 14, 2011

ROSSVILLE (WRCB) - One of the first volunteers, Ann Cho, got an early start on the build site. Here's part of our interview with Ann Cho.

Today started bright and early at 7am. The rally point was at Lake Winnie where registration took place and I got my tee shirt and hard hat. We were informed that production on the site was roughly four hours behind schedule and that 15 people had to be called in last night to help pick up the slack. I was so excited to find out that today would be demolition day, but first, we had to hurry up and wait.

At some time around 7:30, we were moved from the parking lot to Staging Area 2, better known as the food tent. It was there that I got my first job of the day. We were asked to more pallets of food from one side of the tent to the other.  It was not the most glamorous job, but every little task helps organize the future of the production.

Our next task was to lay out some camouflage netting to let it dry. We took one of the nets and walked it down to drape over a trailer near  the job site. Now this netting was probably 10 feet by 15 feet, but 7 of us decided to carry it down. Someone in the group had suggested that we drape it over us (since it was camo, they couldn't see us, right?) and sneak closer to the set. We did get closer, but not under the net. We now went to the holding cell (em, holding area).

The rest of the day was spent disillusioning the Hollywood glamour by seeing how much work and organization actually goes into the filming of this kind of show. There were multiple takes of different scenes, dry runs, and dress rehearsals. The demolition part of the show had been scripted in a comic book hero theme since the young man of the house is a fan of comics. We of course were the "good citizens" standing by as the heroes came to save the day. I loved English Muffin Man (who's power is to change color with the help of paint). The antics were amazing and I cannot wait to see what it looks like on screen.

Demolition of the house started with a big bang, thanks to Chattanooga SWAT and bomb squad. The replay of the explosion was perfect.  From there, I just became a member of the crowd eagerly  cheering on the super heroes and Ty. We were moved from spot to spot, shuffled around a lot, and were asked to act different emotions. I had always wondered how there would seem to be an endless supply of people on the television, but if everyone dresses the same, it is hard to pick out one person over another in a sea of faces. If I ever do something like this again, I am definitely   going to dye my hair hot pink or something to stick out in the crowd.

Everyone on the set and behind the scenes were wonderful and very polite. I am glad that I was able to be a part of this process and it was great to see what happens behind the camera and it gives me a great appreciation for all the other people who make sure the stars look great. I came home with my tee shirt, a little sunburn, but mostly it will be the memories I will keep with me for that small piece that Hollywood gave me. Now, the hard part will be going back to my life as Ann and not being just another face in the crowd. ;-)  


February 14, 2011

ROSSVILLE (WRCB) - One volunteer, Beth Zuckerman, saw an alert on Twitter that last-minute volunteers were needed for an overnight shift. She answered the call and answered a few questions from Channel 3 Eyewitness News.

An All Points Bulletin was put out around 9pm Sunday evening on Facebook requesting fifteen general volunteers come out to the build site to help. Without hesitation I quickly shut off the Grammy's and threw on some appropriate clothing and left. When I arrived at the rendezvous area, they were still accepting volunteers for the evening, and said that the production was already behind schedule! They needed some extra hands to help move out the house and prepare it for demo. 

Blue shirt on and hard hat on head, a shuttle drove a small group of us up to the site where we joined volunteers already bustling around the home. After a very short briefing on how the home was being emptied (certain items going to long term storage, short term storage, or sentimental items that revolved around the family's story being held for props and staging), it was all hands on deck. Find a room and start emptying.

The instant camaraderie among the volunteers was a testament to the spirit of the cause. Everyone working together seamlessly to quickly and efficiently keep the build moving. A little more than two dozen general volunteers wrapped, packed, moved and cleaned out everything in the home in no time at all.

As soon as the house was clear, they asked for the volunteers to move out in order to let chain saws move in. Most of the volunteers took a shuttle back as it was already pushing 11:00pm. A few of us stayed on the site to keep watching what happened next, and to share our motivations for being part of the build. I also got to speak with Emily, the wife of one of the partners from the construction company running the show, who was so happy to greet and speak with the eager volunteers and thank us for our hard work.

The build so far holds very little fanfare without any of the cast on site, and with mostly skilled construction going on. Utility crews prepared the area for demolition and for the upgraded facilities, and right before I left construction workers were preparing the house for demo by cutting it to pieces with chain saws and buzz saws.

It is still very exciting to be part of this extremely worthy project, and I'm very glad that I got to see the home before what will be close to the final product when I return for my confirmed volunteer time Friday night.

If you are a confirmed volunteer, email your information to newstips@wrcbtv.com. We'd love to share your story as well.

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