Extreme week comes to an end

It's hard to believe, but it was just a few days ago when Dale Dunning and son Brooks waved to well-wishers from in front of the soup kitchen at Rehoboth Presbyterian Church at Midway. A lot has happened since Aug. 22. BY RON MACARTHUR
August 31, 2011

What a week; what a weekend.

The week started with the door knock for “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” last Monday and ended with a hurricane and reported tornado. In between, we had a small earthquake to make things interesting. Are locusts next?

I’ve had the rare chance to get up close and personal with the makeover project and it’s been an amazing event to behold. The employees of Schell Brothers deserve major kudos for pulling the extreme makeover off – with the help of more than 1,000 friends and subcontractors.

In all my years of covering events, I’ve never seen anything like the makeover project. It’s amazing how many people have volunteered their time and even more amazing how many companies have volunteered time and materials to make the project a reality.

It’s also interesting to see how the ABC television show unfolds over the week. I doubt they have ever had a shoot with so much natural drama.

An earthquake, hurricane and tornado only add to the story that will be told on the show the Friday before Thanksgiving.

Critics may say it’s major overkill to help just one family, but by helping Dale Dunning’s Jusst Sooup Ministry, thousands of needy and homeless people will be helped each year.

It’s been Dale’s dream over the past 12 years to have a place to base her soup kitchen without using her own kitchen. Now her dream will be realized beyond expectations with a massive soup kitchen on a commercial scale.

It will be interesting to watch her reaction when she sees the 7,000-square-foot Jusst Sooup Ministry Ranch this Wednesday, Aug. 31. It will also be interesting to see how she is able to change what she does because of the complex volunteers have built for her.

At first it might seem a little overwhelming, but knowing Dale, she will get things in order and have her soupers – those who she serves – taken care of even better than before.

  • Ron MacArthur has lived and worked in Sussex County all his life. As a journalist for more than 40 years, he has covered everything from county and town meetings to presidential visits. He also has a unique perspective having served as an elected official and lived on both sides of the county.

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