The end-of-project wrap party is a longstanding tradition at This Old House, but there was a delightful new twist to the party marking the conclusion of the Gen NEXT project in Newton, MA: We had Insiders in da house! In early December, eight Insider members received word that they had won an invitation to the event, and quickly made their plans to get to town. On the night of the wrap party in mid-December, the Insiders and their spouses mixed, mingled, and took photos with the TOH crew. Some highlights:
- The award for longest distance traveled goes to Nick and Eli Warner, who journeyed the 925 miles from their hometown of Lexington, KY, to Newton by plane. “We had a blast, and it was a real honor to meet everyone!” says Nick. “I grew up watching This Old House, and joined Insider as soon as I heard about it.” Nick and his wife, Eli, live in a renovated 1938 house with their son, Oscar, 3. Their only regret was that Oscar wasn’t with them—he started watching the show from his high chair before he turned 1!
- Easily winning the longest-drive award were Fraser Coburn and Jennifer Cammisano, who drove 330 miles from Montreal, Quebec, to enjoy the party. “I can tell you that it was really an incredible experience to meet and talk with the people I have been watching and learning from on TV over the last 35 years,” said Fraser. “Having met with Kevin, Norm, Tom, Charlie, Richard, Roger, and all the rest of the gang along with homeowners from previous seasons, it was such a thrill to see that they are the same people I have watched on TV. What you see really is what you get. What a wonderful bunch of people.”
- Michele Bernier, of Mattapoiset, MA, enjoyed seeing the Newton project firsthand: “The renovation was amazing to see live. Love the kitchen, the farmhouse sink, and the reclaimed-wood door to the pantry. Really love the tiles in the bathrooms and, of course, the warm colors in the in-law suite.”
- Josh McCallen and his son, Connor, jumped on a plane from Philadelphia to attend the party, and chatted with many members of the TOH TV team. For Josh, it was verification that the people he has been watching since childhood are just as genuine as he had imagined. “This Old House is a very personal thing for me, and I still have a passion for building, which has become my career. Connor and I loved every minute of that party.”
- Rich and Carol Preston, of Douglas, MA, drove 60 miles to make the event, and loved seeing the real thing. “It was fun to compare and contrast our impressions from the show with being on-site,” says Rich. “We have been fans of This Old House since the very first show in 1979, so having the opportunity to attend a wrap party was a unique and exciting experience for us. Frankly, we did not know what to expect, but the evening exceeded our expectations. The atmosphere was inviting and everyone made us feel right at home.” That’s a wrap!