New Martinsville Enters HGTV Contest


The City of New Martinsville recently submitted an application to the HGTV Hometown Takeover contest.


The rules for entering the contest were brief. The city must have a population of less than 40,000 and have the need and desire for renovation. The application asked for a video, pictures, written description and contact information. All were limited on size and had to be submitted by midnight on Friday, February 7th, 2020.


“My cousin messaged me about the contest in mid-January. She felt our city would be a perfect fit” stated Mayor Steve Bohrer.

“After some discussion, I appointed a committee consisting of Councilman Steve Pallisco, City Recorder Kim Whiteman and Parks and Recreation Director Bev Gibb and myself. From there it took off."

Talented New Martinsville natives, Michael McKowen and Dan Henthorn, were brought on board to handle the filming, editing and narrative avenues. Santina Vigliotti and Deanna McConaughey willingly gave their time and creativity to write the script.

Filming occurred on February 1st. Two Magnolia High School theater students, Garrett Black and Taylor Martie, gave up their Saturday to help with the equipment during filming.  McKowen, Henthorn and Gibb were also part of the group. Fortunately, Michael already possessed some outstanding film footage that he had previously taken of the city. This was instrumental in handling the tight time line that had been dealt.

They began at The Court Restaurant and made their way around Main Street. Stopping to conduct interviews with Sherron Winer and Tylor Chichick at Barista’s and Bill Witschey at Witschey’s Market.

Unfortunately, due to time constraints, not all interviews were able to be used in the final product. “I am just so pleased with how everything turned out.” said Bohrer. “The sense of pride this video portrays is incredible. Michael and Dan, and everyone else involved, deserve a standing ovation.  If we do not win the contest, we have a remarkable film showcasing our city, which already makes us winners in my book.”

In addition to those already mentioned, special thanks go out to Mike Smith, owner of Barista’s, John Yevuta, David Chichick, Sam Winer, Dan McConaughey, all the fine people at Witschey’s Market, Audrey Gibb, Dawn Myers, The Wetzel County Museum, Matt Quinet, and all those that loaned pictures or agreed to pictures being taken.

The video portion of the application can be viewed on the NM Parks FaceBook Page or the NM City Hall FaceBook.