La Grange to be featured in HGTV show on Sunday | News
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — A city crafted in kindness in Oldham County is being featured in an HGTV show this Sunday.
La Grange will appear on “Home Town Kickstart,” a spinoff series of “Home Town” that features husband and wife Ben and Erin Napier, a couple on a mission to help restore their hometown of Laurel, Mississippi.
The renovations are intended to help transform homes and businesses in small towns. La Grange, promoted as the “Kindness Capital of Kentucky,” is one of six small towns featured in the series.
Local businesses will be boosted by the national exposure, according to La Grange Mayor John Black.
“The town has been a place that’s caught with a lot of energy in the last number of years,” Black said. “We’ve been building on this town and this idea for many years. We have a lot of new things, a lot of investment in the city, a lot of good things are happening. People such as HGTV are recognizing that.”
The episode spotlights Alison Victoria and Joe Mazza as they kickstart three projects in La Grange. In the episode, Victoria and Mazza create a mural dedicated to a couple of trailblazers, design a hub for local small businesses and give a family a home makeover, according to HGTV.
HGTV director of programming and development Jodi Scheer said La Grange was selected out of a pool of thousands of applicants, initially applying to be featured on “Home Town.”
“We came upon La Grange and as we dug on it and looked into it a little bit further and started doing calls, meeting people, it just really seemed apparent that it was a town that was starting the renewal process and could just use a little bit of a boost,” Scheer said.
Scheer said two things that stuck out about La Grange is its train that runs through Main Street. As well as the investment into the town from its youngest residents, like Raegan, 13, and Rylyn Richins, 10, who created the “Be Kind” campaign.
“It was an interesting challenge to figure out how you can create gathering spaces and, and Business and Commerce on a main street where a train is running through it, 10 or 15 times a day,” Scheer said. “And seeing young people like Rylyn and Raegan be so invested in the future of their small town just really stood out to us and we just knew it was a place that we had to go.”
Teresa Boling, Executive Director of the La Grange Main Street Program, said the national exposure is a great “kick start” to for the city to move forward.
“It’s very exciting to be chosen out of thousands of applicants. The excitement here is just tangible,” Boling said. “We are grateful, it’s a great investment in our city.”
The city was told by HGTV to expect a 600% increase in tourism.
“People see it on TV, the stories they are going to tell are really precious stories of the youth in our city,” Boling said.
Scott Houchin, who was born and raised in La Grange, said the town deserves the attention.
“I’m so glad to see La Grange is getting its due. Oldham County has changed so much, but this street has stayed the same,” Houchin, who wrote a book about growing up in La Grange, said.
The show will first air on Sunday at 8 p.m. on HGTV.
La Grange is hosting a free premiere party on Sunday, going from 6:45-9:15 p.m. at Southeast Christian Church on South 1st Street. There will also be live music from 4-6 p.m. and food trucks from 1-6:30 p.m.
Shops and restaurants are expected to be open before the show. Around 800 people are expected to attend the showing at Southeast Christian Church.
While the city has already garnered the “Kindness Capital of Kentucky” reputation, Boling said it’s something the city continues to aspire for.
The city will show off its kindness during the one-hour episode.
“If we’re not kind, we aren’t doing anything right,” Black said. “We have a lot of young folks here that are portraying the kindness idea. We want to be known as the kindness capital.”
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