Former Youngwood school goes out as reality TV star
By Renatta Signorini
Published: Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
Architectural pieces from a former school in Youngwood are up for grabs.
To see some of the items for sale, just watch TV.
“It was a great experience for us,” said Tay Waltenbaugh, executive director of Westmoreland Community Action.
The agency's program, Shop Demo Depot in Mt. Pleasant, partnered with Virginia-based Black Dog Salvage to clean out the former Youngwood High School for an episode of “Salvage Dawgs” set to air later this month on the DIY Network.
Film crews spent Nov. 14 at the former school shooting the removal of lockers, doors and windows from the 97-year-old building. Many of the items will be repurposed or sold at Black Dog Salvage in Roanoke, Va., or Shop Demo Depot.
“We wanted to come up and show what we do and bring some of your stuff home,” said Mike Whiteside, co-owner of the salvage company that picks up new finds weekly on “Salvage Dawgs” and resells or repurposes them. The episode — airing Feb. 27 and March 2 — will chronicle the “Dawgs” removing chairs, chalkboards, sinks and other items from the school.
“We usually do them on our own, but we love working with other companies of like-minded individuals,” Whiteside said.
In turn, Shop Demo Depot and Community Action employees got a lesson.
The Mt. Pleasant store financially supports programs run by Westmoreland Community Action by selling donated excess or reclaimed items, such as building materials and kitchen cabinets.
“We were working side by side with them,” Waltenbaugh said.
“I thought it would be a good way to promote what we do at Demo Depot,” he said. “That show really does a great job of showing people how to use old things.”
The episode will be a last glimpse inside the school, which served students of all ages until it closed in 1984 and was transformed into office space. Demolition work on the building is scheduled to begin later this week, said Youngwood Borough Council President Lloyd Crago.
“It was interesting,” Crago said of the filming. “All the stars from the show were there ... cutting things out and stuff like that. I'm anxious to see what it looks like.”
Borough officials managed to salvage some items beforehand from the old building, including a sign and foundation blocks that may be used at a park and playground that is planned to replace the school.
“We don't make any money on it, but the stuff won't end up in a landfill,” Crago said.
He hopes the park will be completed by mid-summer.
Renatta Signorini is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reachedat 724-837-5374 or email@example.com.
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