Homes on the Range

And Thou Shalt Honor Presents:

Early in the 21st cen­tury, a small town, Sheri­dan, in North­ern Wyoming decides it must change how it cares for its elders and its frail. More retirees are arriv­ing; more peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties and frail­ties need home care. What might they do? In 2004, com­mu­nity lead­ers see a glimpse of what their town’s future could become. They watch a video that depicts the very first Green House Project model built for elders in Tupelo, Mis­sis­sippi. Though the chal­lenge of cre­at­ing these new homes with­out out­side insti­tu­tional sup­port is daunt­ing, the com­mu­nity forms a task force and they pro­ceed together to develop their vision. Just as they begin to raise the mil­lions of dol­lars they will need for the project, the eco­nomic cri­sis hits and severely threat­ens what they might accom­plish. Still, in spite of odds, they persist.

Homes on the Range “The New Pio­neers”  is a poignant two-hour doc­u­men­tary story about how Sheri­dan learns how to work together to ful­fill a dream and achieve a com­mon goal that will serve their com­mu­nity for gen­er­a­tions. MPC’s Senior Editor/Writer/Producer, Bev­erly Baroff, who has edited, writ­ten, and pro­duced all major MPC projects since our incep­tion, has already pared cam­era­man Dale Bell’s 10-year dig­i­tal mate­r­ial down from 80 hours to 4. Bev­erly will craft a fea­ture length doc­u­men­tary film for the­atri­cal release sev­eral months from now, before the film is broad­cast nation­ally on PBS sta­tions, with WYO PBS act­ing as our Pre­sent­ing Station.

Pro­ducer and Direc­tor, Dale Bell, has a unique con­nec­tion to the com­mu­nity and Green House Project in Sheri­dan.  As a young man in 1955 and 1956, Dale rode the rails and hitch­hiked across the coun­try to work for two sum­mers in Wyoming. He found a home in the Zane Grey coun­try of Sheri­dan, work­ing on ranches and many other projects. While there, Dale devel­oped a love and respect for the peo­ple he met and worked with, and who took him in as he was bounc­ing around from job to job, try­ing to find a home. Sheri­dan had always held a spe­cial place in his heart, and when he returned in 2004 after fin­ish­ing film­ing the rev­o­lu­tion­ary Green Houses in Tupelo, Mis­sis­sippi, he knew instantly of a way he could give back to the com­mu­nity that had given him so much as a young man. Dale shared the short video of Tupelo with the com­mu­nity of Sheri­dan, chal­leng­ing them to change the face of elder care. He then com­mit­ted to doc­u­ment on film the process of “com­mu­nity build­ing” so that their suc­cess could help moti­vate other com­mu­ni­ties to do the same…and the Homes on the Range project was born.

Click here for more infor­ma­tion on HOMES Wyoming Pre­mier.

Dale Bell, Sheri­dan, Wyoming. 1955.