Thursday, October 12, 2000

Free 'neighborly' remodeling

        Need help remodeling a room? Then consider volunteering for the Learning Channel's Trading Spaces show coming to the Tristate next month.

        Trading Spaces will tape three programs here Nov. 13-22. For each show, TLC will provide an interior designer, a handyman, and a $1,000 budget to each of two neighbors.

        Here's the catch: The neighbors must switch houses for 48 hours.

        “Why? Because you're decorating your neighbor's room, while they're redoing yours. Forty-eight hours later, you get to return to your own house and see the result,” says Beth MacDonald, Trading Places locations supervisor for Ross Television Productions in Knoxville, Tenn.

        She will scout homes of Tristate volunteers starting Wednesday for the show created by GMG Endemol Entertainment, the London company that created Who Wants to be a Millionaire and Big Brother.

        Here are the rules:

        • Neighbors must live across the street, next door or at least on the same block. Condo/apartment neighbors are welcome, too.

        • Each home must have a “team” of two people residing there — spouses, partners, roommates or parent/child. (Team members must be 16 or older).

        • The room to be redesigned must be at least 14 by 14 feet, to accommodate a camera crew.

        • Residents must take 2 1/4 days off work during the taping. The shooting may not occur on a weekend, she says.

        Interested? Recruit a neighbor for the project, and call Ms. MacDonald at Trading Places office in Knoxville, (865) 588-5768 and request an application form. Or go to the show's Internet site,

        “There is no fee. We'll give you free expertise, labor and material to have a room in your home re-done,” she says.

        And you get to be on national TV. Such a deal.

        Reaching Regis: Kimberly Ray, co-host of the WVMX-FM (MIX94.1) Kimberly & Carson morning show, had her 15 seconds of fame Wednesday. Now she wants 60 minutes.

        Regis Philbin broadcast her audition video Wednesday on his Live with Regis show, one of hundreds he received from female radio personalities wanting to replace Kathie Lee Gifford. Five radio DJs will co-host on the national show the week of Oct. 23.

        Ms. Ray submitted a 30-second video of her to the tune of the WKRP in Cincinnati theme. Sidekick Rob Carson wrote new lyrics sung by MIX94.1 creative services director Bill Millikin: “Live with Regis and Kimberly from Cincinnati.”

        The morning team encourages all listeners to e-mail support for Kimberly to Mr. Philbin at

        “They're certainly going to pick someone from New York and Los Angeles, the biggest markets, but we're telling people that Cincinnati needs to be represented, too,” Mr. Carson says.

        Ms. Ray, a 12-year radio veteran who has never done TV, says she has a good feeling about her chances. Astrologer Jean Hart, a guest on MIX94.1 Wednesday, said “she believes that it's 99.9 percent that I will go to Regis, so I'm very excited.”

        Mr. Philbin's radio co-hosts will be selected next week.

        Pledge time: Northern Kentucky University's WNKU-FM (89.7) starts a seven-day, $80,000 fund drive today. Premiums include WNKU-FM 15th anniversary caps and shirts.

        ER returns: NBC Entertainment President Garth Ancier says he's confident ER won't miss a beat this fall, despite the departures of Julianna Margulies, George Clooney, Kellie Martin and Gloria Reuben in the past 18 months.

        “It's the genius of (executive producer) John Wells. He overstocked the show with cast last year so when you got to this year, and Julianna Margulies is gone, he'd have a whole new group of people. I think it's in good shape,” Mr. Ancier says.

        Kiese-watching: Wasn't Clyde Gray a bit premature telling Channel 9 viewers at 6:15 p.m. Tuesday that “we may know soon who is headed to the World Series” — a day before the best-of-seven National League Championship Series started?

        Memo to Channel 19's Jack Atherton: It's the School for Creative and Performing Arts — not the School for Performing and Creative Arts, which would make it the SPCA.

        Radio highlight: Public radio talk host Diane Rehm will be on the other side of the microphone when she is interviewed by Darrel Gray on a live WMUB-FM Forum at 9 a.m. today on Oxford's WMUB-FM (88.5).

        The Diane Rehm Show airs 10 a.m.-noon weekdays on WMUB-FM, and on WVXU-FM (91.7) at 10-11 a.m. and 5-6 p.m.


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