Kathy Tynes is currently in the process of having a house built. That did not stop the Columbus woman from purchasing a ticket for a chance at winning the St. Jude Dream Home.
"I get one every year," said Tynes, who runs Tidy Up Cleaning Service. "I think it is an awesome program. There are so many people out there with cancer, and I want to give my support."
Tynes was one of several hundred people who took advantage of a weekend open house at the site, 205 Pebblebrook Lane in Columbus' Riverbrook Subdivision.
"It seems a little smaller than some they have given away in the past, but it is very nice," she said of the house.
Tynes said she was especially impressed with the hardwood floors.
Money raised in the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway goes to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., where children with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses are treated with no financial obligation to the family.
This is the 12th year for the local St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway, and there are 6,500 tickets available at $100 apiece. The tickets have been on sale since January.
Event marketing representative Courtney McMahon said approximately 5,500 were sold last year.
"So far, we've sold about 1,700," she said. "We had hoped for about 2,000 at this time."
She said that ticket sales usually pick up in the last couple of weeks before the drawing, which is April 21.
"Even if you don't win the house there are so many other great prizes," McMahon said.
All of them, she said, are worth more than $1,000.
Joanne Blankenship, of Preston, Ga., won last year's house, valued at $365,000.
This year's house, constructed by Grayhawk Homes, is valued at about $300,000,
The house is approximately 2,800 square feet and has four bedrooms and three and one-half baths. There is an oversized covered deck, wood-burning fireplace and game room.
For those wishing to see the house, it will be open from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturdays and from noon to 5 p.m. on Sundays.
Some of the prizes are a $1,500 shopping spree from Stone furniture, a portable storage building from Action Buildings, one year of fresh flowers from Flowers Plus, a $1,500 shopping spree at Leisure Lifestyles, a $1,000 shopping spree at JC Penney and a 55-inch LG flat screen TV from Kmart.
For more information or to reserve tickets, call 1-800-383-9844 or visit www.dreamhome.org.
Tickets are available at local Regions bank locations and at Action Buildings and Truck Style Locations.