Susan highlighted the week below:
- The project included 18 houses (I worked on House #2), and at the end of the week, it was announced that land on the other side of the street had been donated so that the entire subdivision will eventually consist of 41 houses.
- Trisha Yearwood, Garth Brooks, & David Letterman all participated this year along with several hundred volunteers and of course, President Jimmy Carter and Rosalynn Carter.
- Rosalynn’s special touch this year: As she is very concerned with the survival of the Monarch butterfly, the subdivision will be planted with milkweed, which is the only plant on which Monarch butterflies construct their chrysalis and breed. (See the monarch butterfly on the sign to the subdivision.)
- This year something new was tried – using a crane to lift the roofs (built on the ground during the week) up onto the rest of the house.
- Opening ceremonies were held at Notre Dame, and David Letterman spoke. A real treat! He has been building fervently with Habitat since Katrina and had tried to keep it under wraps. Even the Carter’s did not know, but it is out now. He has sponsored 24 houses so far. Amazing!!
- Also, on that Wednesday the Carter’s and all of the volunteers were honored at a South Bend Cubs baseball game (minor league team of Chicago Cubs) with a big cookout in the stands.
- Another evening, there was a planned “Party on the Bend”, for all participants with the Habitat build, at a nice pavilion overlooking the St. Joseph river. The turnout was great!
We were very lucky, weather-wise. Only one or two brief showers interrupted activities during the week. I saw about a dozen friends that I’d built with before, in Memphis, Haiti, and Canada. The joke is, once you contract “Habititis,” you have it for life. It’s a disease I’m happy to live with!
Way to go Susan!!!