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Town of Phil Campbell pursues HGTV show slot

When Brooklyn resident Phil Campbell ended his work on the documentary “I’m with Phil,” he always knew he wanted to do more to help the town that shares his name. Now, almost six years later, the New Yorker is pushing to have the Town of Phil Campbell featured on HGTV.

Campbell said when someone tagged him in a post on Facebook about an HGTV show renovating an entire town, it only took a few hours for a plan to be in the works.

“The pitch to HGTV is that Phil Campbell residents are proud of their little town but could use some outside help,” Campbell said. “After the tornado hit in 2011, we tried to see if we could find a reality television show interested in taking on the project, but at that time no one was doing something at the scale of towns.”

Campbell said he is working to put together a video with footage of Phil Campbell to send to HGTV stars Erin and Ben Napier for their new show, “Home Town Takeover.”

Campbell said the video has to be submitted by Feb. 4, and there is a lot of work going into the project to get the video completed by deadline.

“There are a lot of different parts we want to show to tell the story of Phil Campbell,” Campbell said.

Phil Campbell Mayor Steve Bell is giving the backstory of the town, and a drone camera will show different aspects of the town.

“We really just talked about the town and the tornado and struggles we have seen since then,” Bell said. “We have come so far since then.”

Bell said he would love to see the show help renovate areas of the town the city is not allowed to help with municipal funds. He said he would also like to see the park expanded.

“I really have a soft spot for the park downtown,” Bell said. “I would love to see that expanded and more added to it. It has gotten to where any time you drive by it, it is almost always in use. It is nice for the people to have an area like that where they can go.”

A pep rally will be held at the high school Friday for a video of students, and another rally will take place Jan. 25 in the park by town hall at noon.

Bell said he is excited for Saturday to see how many people will come out and support.

Although not much is known about what all the show would bring, Bell said he is excited to see what the future holds.

“We don’t know much about how they do selections or even what all would be involved, but we are open to anything,” Bell said.

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