Merrill Makeover winners announced
Projects have been awarded in the first ever Merrill Makeover contest, sponsored by River Valley Bank.
River Valley put up a $12,500 pledge at the onset of the project and requested other Merrill businesses to contribute. The community came through with $20,200 toward Merrill Makeover, which will help deserving families make needed repairs and upgrades to their homes.
“I’m extremely grateful for the support that was given to us,” said River Valley Bank Merrill Branch Manager Elizabeth Messner, who initiated the project. “I think it’s fantastic.”
With the amount of money available, Merrill Makeover was able to fund four projects.
Messner said she was thrilled with that result.
“For an initial attempt, I think four is great,” she said.
The winners were chosen by the public in an online vote. Thousands of votes were cast through the River Valley Bank website over the past few weeks.
Grand prize winners are Tim and Brandy Brandt, whose home will be remodeled for handicap accessibility.
Merrill Makeover will also provide the labor to complete and roofing project and install windows at the home of Richard Kotschi. Jane Kleinhaus will receive a roofing project and Ralph Schulz will receive siding and window repair.
“Merrill Makeover has been very well received by people,” Messner said. “We wanted to establish an event the community could get behind, something more on a personal level. Nobody gets behind Merrill like Merrill does.”
Messner had already met Friday with local buildings Jason Stadler of Stadler Builders and Eric Meyer of Meyer Electric and Construction, who will be completing the projects.
The goal is to have the projects completed by the end of June, when a finale celebration is planned at Normal Park. The public will be invited June 27 for the finale event which will include live music, vendors and inflatables for kids.
“We do plan to do this as an annual event,” Messner said. “(River Valley Bank) has shifted a good bit above and beyond what we already do in the community in terms of charitable giving. I wanted to do something that makes a bigger impact on people’s lives.”