The St. Jude Dream Home will be open to the public on Saturday, Aug. 6, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, Aug. 7, from noon to 5 p.m.

The winner of the St. Jude Dream Home will be announced on Sunday, Aug. 14, at 2 p.m. on KTBS 3. Tickets are $100.

The St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway was created in 1991 by Dr. Donald Mack, a Shreveport pediatric physician. Dr. Mack has relied on St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to treat young patients with life-threatening diseases and was the first doctor to send an out-of-state patient to St. Jude. The first St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway raised $160,000 for the hospital. Since that first giveaway, St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway has raised more than $28 million for the hospital. Today, the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway is one of the largest single-event fundraisers for St. Jude nationwide and has raised more than $300 million. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food.

Thanks to dozens and dozens of volunteers and businesses, the St. Jude Dream Home gets bigger and better every year. But there are two individuals who contribute more than their share to make this annual fundraiser a success ––– Philip Rodgers and Guy Williamson. Rodgers owns Rodgers Homes and Construction, and Williamson is co-owner of Designer’s Showroom. Obviously, Rodgers and his team built this year’s home and Williamson is the interior designer.

Both men believe in St. Jude’s mission and that motivates them to give the St. Jude Dream Home that “wow” factor. Rodgers’ dad, George, built the first St. Jude Dream Home, so the St. Jude project is in Rodgers’ DNA. This is the third year for Williamson to lend his talents to the fundraiser.

This year’s home, located in Lost River Estates in Benton, has the feel of a traditional farmhouse, which gives the home a unique tone and texture. But, as you look closer, you will see a wide variety of features that really takes this dream home to another level.

For  example:

  • The granite  island in the kitchen is large enough to host a dinner party.
  • There is a fireplace inside and fireplace outside.
  • There is a super cool retractable  screen in the patio area.
  • There is a complete outdoor  kitchen on the patio.
  • There is a mixture of antique and new pieces throughout the house.
  • The shower in the master bath is enormous. And there is a freestanding tub just like you might find in an old farmhouse.
  • There is a gas  grill inside and outside.
  • There is a collection of antlers from the World War I era.

The home has an open floor plan, perfect for entertaining. You easily could host 40-50 guests in the living/kitchen area. Even though the home has an open feel (thanks to a 12-foot ceiling in the living area), it’s still cozy, charming, comfortable and livable.

The shiplap wood, which runs horizontal, really reinforces the farmhouse look. You also will find some special finishes on walls and furniture throughout the house. Williamson used a color scheme of grays, French blue and white to compliment the whitewashed shiplap. Substantial wood beams can be found in the open spaces, which also lends to that rustic feel.

The home boasts wood floors in the kitchen, living area, foyer and dining room, as well as the front and back halls. Patterned, textured carpets in the bedrooms lend an elegant feel to the home. The home has a lot of natural light, thanks to an abundance of windows.

No doubt, this St. Jude Dream Home has a ton of touches that sets it apart. “Whoever wins this house will be totally impressed with the details of the home,” Williamson said. “Nothing has been spared. Everyone who buys a ticket will be impressed.”

Photography by Marc Gibson