Move that bus!

Recently, Extreme Makeover Home Edition was in our neck of the woods, literally! 

In Season 9-Episode 14, the Extreme Team makes their way deep into The Lost Pines forest of Smithville, Texas.

No longer than two months ago the most destructive wild fire in Texas history ripped through this area destroying over 1,600 homes; leaving many families and the surrounding pine forests completely devastated. The community has since demonstrated that even a natural disaster of this magnitude couldn’t keep them down. Since the month long fire ended, volunteers with varying skills from Bastrop and surrounding areas banded together to rebuild their homes from rubble.

Extreme Makeover spent a lot of time in Bastrop speaking to locals about the specific destruction they had experienced while also searching for a family who was in need of more than a little extra help. During their search they learned about the Heart of the Pines Volunteer Fire Department which had been completely destroyed during the fire while the firefighters were out battling the flames themselves. Members of the Heart of the Pines are all long standing volunteer members, but during such an unexpected and overwhelming catastrophe, many members of community left their homes behind to help aid the Firefighters defend what was left of the town they share and call home. One of these selfless individuals was Mizzie Zdroj. The Zdroj home was located less than 400 yards from the Heart of the Pines fire station, and burned to the ground in mere moments of each other. Abandoned foundations and burned single standing chimneys lined the road leading up to the Zdroj and Heart of the Pines site. It’s heartbreaking to see the widespread damage throughout Bastrop and Smithville. 

In just 7 days, Extreme Makeover and the community not only rebuilt the Zdroj family home, but also completed a fire station for Smithville’s Heart of the Pines firefighter family. As proud sponsors of this effort and Extreme Makeover Home Edition, Gallery Direct got out of the office for a few days and into the volunteer action over in Smithville. Nearing the end of the project, for 3 days hundreds of volunteers came out to help with the finals stages, from landscaping to simply moving furniture in. Every aspect of building these new structures was donated, sponsored and offered up freely by Extreme Makeover and the community.

That’s pretty powerful, see for yourself! Check out the photos from the last 3 days right here and get ready to MOVE THAT BUS! 







Be sure to tune in to Season 9 – Episode 14. It airs next Christmas in a two hour special! I can’t wait to see the art the designers chose for the Zdroj’s!


Author and Photos by Candice Benge






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