Mike Homes

Mike Homes

TV’s Mike Holmes goes beyond the code for Red Deer charity

A $15,000 playhouse built to the standards of Canada’s Most Trusted Contractor will be featured at this year’s Festival of Trees.

A $15,000 playhouse built to the standards of Canada’s Most Trusted Contractor will be featured at this year’s Festival of Trees.

On Wednesday, organizers revealed the unfinished playhouse in Clearview Ridge featuring Mike Holmes of Holmes Approved Homes.

“Minimum code sucks,” said Mike Holmes. “I’m that kind of guy … I believe in building things better. When it comes to anything with kids, it better be safe. It better be strong. And they got to love it.”

By mid-fall, raffle tickets will be available to win the two-storey, 33-metre (11-foot-high) playhouse with a wrap-around deck and slide, built by Avalon Central Alberta Homes.

Before hammering a shingle onto the playhouse’s roof, Holmes said one of the biggest mistakes he sees in home projects like treehouses or playhouses is the element of not caring.

“If you don’t care about what you do, you’re not going to do it well,” said Holmes. “If you care about what you do, you will build a treehouse beautiful. If you don’t, you’re going to make it ugly. Eye candy. All new paint, all new floors, looks beautiful, but we are about what’s behind this. So if you build it right and you care about what you do, it’s all going to be good.”

This year, the Festival of Trees is dedicating its funds to upgrading and improving the equipment in the histology lab in the Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre.

Kathy Lacey, Festival of Trees co-chair of sponsorship, said upgrading the equipment will mean health workers will be able to get the results accurately and quickly to the waiting patients. Treatment and diagnoses can’t happen until they know what we are dealing with.

The lab tests tissue samples from 22 rural hospitals into Red Deer Regional. Roughly three million samples a year come out of the lab and that number is expected to triple once the cancer centre opens in 2013 and the endoscopy centre opens this spring.

The winning ticket will be drawn at the Festival of Trees in November.

“Mike Holmes’ certification and endorsement of this project just makes it much more valuable to everybody that is buying a ticket,” said Lacey. “You know that it’s built right. You know he has given his stamp of approval. … At the end of the day, it’s the monies that are created for the Red Deer Regional Hospital that are probably most important to the citizens of Central Alberta.”

The Festival of Trees runs from Nov. 23 to 25 at Westerner Park. For more information, visit www.reddeerfestivaloftrees.ca.