It’s hard to believe two weeks have gone by since the Backyard Makeover voting has ended & the winners were chosen. You probably think it’s been a quiet two weeks after all that craziness of the voting frenzy. In fact the opposite is true, we’ve have been busy organizing, scheduling, ordering & meeting with the winners, contributing business members & local reporters. So busy in fact that I am writing this during the only free time I’ve had this week, as we drive to Orlando to pick up some of the donated goodies & to attend a landscape trade show. We thought it was time to give everyone an update as to what happens next.
First we didn’t want the 10 finalist to go home empty handed so we asked all of the participating businesses to help us fill a packet with coupons & freebies that we will be sending out to them on Monday. We also gave the second place yard, Michelle #5, a $50 gift certificate for Backyard Getaway & the third place yard, Derek #8, received a gift certificate to Bone Appetite. In case you aren’t familiar with Bone Appetite it’s a local pet boutique that carries all natural pet foods & treats & some of the cutest accessories.
The makeover officially begins Monday with a visit form Sunshine Dig. Sunshine Dig is a non profit that offers a free service to homeowners & contractors. Before you dig in your yard they will schedule all the utility companies to come out & check for underground wires, cables, plumbing, etc. Joey, our winner, found out the hard way the other day & cut through their cable wire while trying to remove a stump. Shame on you Joey, you should have called “811”. Don’t worry we know you were just trying to make the yard pretty for us.
Just like any project this one had a couple of hiccups. One of our original contributing businesses will not be able to contribute. I panicked for about a minute then after a few quick phone calls we were back on track. There truly are some amazing business owners in our area. Two companies came forward to help knowing that they would not reap the benefit of all the advertising & promoting we had been doing over the last couple of months. Trucking Southern Style agreed to supply us with the ground cover items we lost & Ruck Brick/OldCastleCoastal will be supplying the flagstone for the walkways Dave will install. Please visit www.whatabackyard.com click on the local contributors link & view the info about these companies. Another concern we had was due to a mistaken assumption on my part. I didn’t realize that the shade sail did not come with it’s support post. I was told that I would need to get 4” schedule 40 galvanized pipe at 16’ long. Where was I going to find that! I called Brad at All phases Welding (one of our contributors) & he stepped up & offered to donated them too.
On Tuesday we will lay out the yard marking where each feature will be installed. Wednesday will be the day we break ground. Digging for the pond & setting footers for the arbor & shade sail. Thursday & Friday will be very busy days with installation of the pond, arbor, shade sail, shed, hydroponics, landscape lighting, paver patio and walkways, all while being followed by our videographer & photographer. Oh, almost forgot there will be a couple of other surprises Dave has up his sleeve. Don’t worry Joey & Heather, there won’t be any mini grills, ponds or sheds.
Friday afternoon Joey & Heather will be sent away to the Best Western Midtown to spend a relaxing night & to keep them from seeing the finishing touches that we will be installing on Saturday. They will return home Saturday evening to their new $16,000 Ultimate Backyard Makeover & we will be off planning our next project. I think a party at the Patoray’s sounds like more fun!