National Exposure: HGTV show to feature Selma’s Harmony ClubPublished 3:23pm Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Jay Sowers | Selma Times-Journal
Thirteen years after he moved to Selma, the hard work David Hurlbut has put into Water Avenue’s Harmony Club is gaining national attention.
A crew from AMS Pictures was in Selma Friday interviewing Hurlbut, and his roommate Bill Tomey, as well as collecting footage of the building, which will be featured in an upcoming episode of “You Live In What?” on HGTV sometime this fall.
“They are interested in the way people take and adapt older buildings or different structures, instead of letting go to waste,” Hurlbut said.
This isn’t the first time Hurlbut and The Harmony Club have received national attention. The building was also profiled in a 2010 article by The New York Times.
Clark Gray, producer with AMC Pictures, said Hurlbut’s work on the 3-story brick Venetian plaza was a big reason why the building was selected.
“The main thing that impresses me while working on this show, is when anyone takes on a task like this on a building that has, to many people, seen it’s heyday,” Gray said.
Gray said Hurlbut’s work plays a perfect compliment to the intricacies that have been there since the building was constructed over a century ago.
“The amount of details and the appearance of the building, matched with the work he has done; it is great,” Gray said.
The first floor of the building is commercial — half is home to the Vineyard Italian restaurant, and Hurlbut hopes to open Restotonica in the other half of the street level floor either later this year or early next year.
Hurlbut and Tomey reside on the second and third floors. The third floor features a ballroom with 30-foot ceilings.
Hurlbut said it takes a special set of eyes to not only see a building as is, but more importantly, as what it can be with some hard work.
“Sometimes the most difficult part is to get people to see it when you are working on it,” Hurlbut said. “They think you are crazy. But they are the same people who, when the work is all done, they say ‘ohh’ and ‘ahh.’”
While his work on The Harmony Club has drawn the eye of a national broadcasting network, Hurlbut said it is really no different than the work every homeowner does on their home.
“People don’t want to admit this, but when you buy a new house, within seven years you are doing the exact thing that you are doing here,” Hurlbut said. “It’s just on a bigger scale.”
And after 13 years, Hurlbut laughs heartily when asked if he is nearing completion of the renovations on The Harmony Club.
“This is like a cathedral for me,” Hurlbut said. “I’ll probably always be working on this.
“You are never done working on a building. That’s the nature of the work.”