Build a House…Build a Dream Contest 2020

When we first announced that we would not be able to host the Build a House…Build a Dream contest on March 21st; we were so hopeful that we would be able to postpone until things calmed down. With Governor Wolf’s shelter in place order and the extended closing of schools, we came to another sad truth that getting all of our participants together this year wasn’t going to be a possibility.

But that didn’t stop us! We want to show off all the hard work the students have put into their dream homes by hosting the first-ever VIRTUAL Build a House…Build a Dream contest! We are asking participants to email us a photo and/or video of their dream homes with their 100-word description of the inspiration behind their house. We will upload all the pictures and videos into a presentation and share everyone’s work in a video.

The virtual event will take place on May 2nd from 10am-12pm via a YouTube link sent to everyone that submits a home. We will also share the video on our Facebook page for everyone else to see these amazing creations.

We welcome any 5th grade student to submit a dream home even if they were not previously registered for the event! We hope this allows for some fun at home while everyone is doing their part to stay healthy and safe.


We have made some changes to the rules to accommodate for the virtual version of the contest. You can find more information below but if you have any questions you don’t see an answer for, please email Becki Patterson at becki@hfhcc.org

Submission Instructions
  • All dream homes must be submitted by 5 pm on April 28th, 2020.
  • To submit your dream home, please email the participant’s name, age, elementary school, a picture and/or video showing their creation along with a 100-word description of how they came up with their design. Also, please let us know if you had originally worked on your dream home with a partner.
  • We will create a presentation of all of the homes and host a live YouTube video on May 2nd from 10am until 12pm displaying all of the submissions along with thanking our sponsors and pulling winners for our raffle prizes.

Please email submissions to becki@hfhcc.org

Contest Rules

Here are the updated rules to keep in mind when building your model dream home:

  • Models must be three-dimensional and fit on a base no larger than 2ft x 3ft.
  • Students must prepare one written description of about 100 words or less explaining why this is their idea of a dream house and highlighting any interesting features. This paragraph will be displayed with their homes.
  • Since the house will be displayed in your home, you are welcome to use electricity or any other element that might not have been available before.
  • Participants are also welcome to use liquids or goo when designing their homes since there is no risk to a venue location.
  • Students must include their name, age and what school they go to.
  • Since the contest will not be judged, we welcome the whole family to get creative and have fun building a dream home.
Helpful Answers
  • What exactly is this contest when it’s not happening virtually?
    It may be easiest to think of the contest like a science fair, except instead of making a science project, students build a model home. Contestants spend time before the contest building their three-dimensional model dream home and then present it on the day of the contest along with a written paragraph as to why this is their dream home. Judges will evaluate each entry based upon originality and creativity, use of materials, appearance and design, and independent effort.
  • Who can participate in this contest?
    Any fifth-grader in public, private, charter, parochial, or homeschool (or any other type of schooling we missed) can participate!

Tickets for our online raffle are now available!

We have raffle prizes available for participants and parents to win during the event. Raffle ticket sales are normally a big part of the funds raised during the Build a House event and are crucial to keeping Habitat’s mission going. If you’re able to purchase raffle tickets, we would greatly appreciate your support.

All students will be entered into the student raffles including passes to rock climbing, bowling, and other fun activities. We understand that most of these locations are currently closed due to the quarantine restrictions but we have been in contact with our fabulous donors and we will ensure that the prizes won will be valid for when the restrictions are lifted. (We can’t wait for that day to come!)

There are also 5 big-ticket raffle prizes available by purchasing raffle tickets through an online program!

Available Raffle Prizes:

6 One-Day Park Hopper Tickets to Walt Disney World

With the Park Hopper tickets, you can visit multiple theme parks on the same day of your ticket. These tickets are a $1,014 value! Tickets can not be used between Christmas and New Years.

Family Fun Package

Tickets for a family day out or a night for the parents to have some fun! Includes gift certificate to the West Chester Escape Room, Play Cards for Arnold’s Family Fun, Power Cards from Dave and Busters and six tickets to the Reading Fightin Phils. The package also includes a $20 Gift Certificate to Ron’s Original Bar and Grille.

Green Gardens Package

The essentials for a day of green-thumbed inspiration. Two guest passes to Longwood Gardens, a $50 gift card to Terrain Garden Café, a $50 gift card to Home Depot and a 1-month membership to ACAC Fitness. The package also includes a $20 Gift Certificate to Ron’s Original Bar and Grille.

Thrill Seeker Package

For the family that loves amusement parks! This package includes 6 tickets to Dorney Park, 2 tickets to Hershey Park and 2 passes to Six Flags Great  Adventure & Safari. The package also includes a $20 Gift Certificate to Ron’s Original Bar and Grille. 

All Out Art Package

A complete kit for creative experiences for everyone to enjoy! Includes a $30 gift certificate to Pinot’s Palette in Exton, a bottle of wine to take with you (your choice of white or red), a $50 Michaels Craft Store gift card and two admissions tickets to the Crayola Experience. Also included is a $20 Gift Certificate to Ron’s Original Bar and Grille.

3rd Annual Building A Thirst Brewery Ticket Book Fundraiser

We are excited to have 11 Chester County breweries sign on for our 3rd annual Building a Thirst fundraiser! We will be out and about selling brewery ticket books this fall and winter, each containing tickets redeemable for a free beer at each brewery. Tickets are valid from January 1, 2020, until September 7, 2020. These books will be available during designated happy hours at each brewery leading up to the holiday season, making great gifts for the craft beer lover in your life!

Current Happy Hour Dates:

In addition to these happy hours, beer ticket books will also be available at our ReStore location from December 12th to the 21st! The Restore is open from 9am-6pm Monday through Saturday, giving you extra time to stop in and purchase a book while seeing what’s new at the store. The store is located at 1853 E. Lincoln Highway, Coatesville, PA 19320. Click here to RSVP to the Facebook event and receive updates!

Want to be the first to know when we add another happy hour? Click here to sign up for our Building a Thirst Newsletter for updates and happy hour dates! For any additional questions, please email us at info@hfhcc.org or call 610-384-7993 ext. 19.

Special thanks to these 3rd year participating breweries:

                            

And a warm welcome to this year’s additions!

               

Build a House…Build a Dream Contest 2020

Calling all fifth-grade builders, artists, architects, and engineers! Along with presenting sponsor Fox & Roach and Trident Charities, Habitat for Humanity of Chester County is excited to announce the 17th annual Build a House…Build a Dream! contest for kids being held on March 21, 2020!

In this competition, fifth-grade students in the Delaware Valley work individually or in pairs to build their own three-dimensional, model dream homes. Students deliver their models to the Church Farm School in Exton for display and judging. Participants may drop off their models Friday March 20th between 5:00pm and 7:00pm or the morning of the contest between 8:30am and 9:00am. Students will need to be standing with their dream homes at 9:15am for our panel of judges to speak with them about their inspiration and process. There will be three rounds of judging with contestants being dismissed after each round. The top three dream homes will be announced during our awards ceremony with the top three prizes awarded to the winners. While our panel of volunteers, Habitat board members and architects in the community judge the dream homes, we will have raffles, snacks and activities for the students and their families to keep the fun going! The event ends at approximately 12:00pm after all prizes have been handed out.

More information on getting registered, contest rules and the event location can be found below!

Contest Rules

Though there are few rules to the contest, please be sure to keep the following rules in mind when building your model dream home:

  • Models must be three-dimensional and fit on a base no larger than 2ft x 3ft.
  • Students must prepare one written description of about 100 words or less explaining why this is their idea of a dream house and highlighting any interesting features. This paragraph will be displayed with their homes.
  • Electrical outlets will not be available.
  • The use of liquids (water, slime, etc.) is not permitted, as we want to preserve the cleanliness of our contest venue!
  • Students must be prepared to discuss their entry with contest judges.
  • Model homes will be judged on the following criteria:
    • Originality and creativity
    • Use of materials
    • Appearance and design
    • Independent effort (This is a contest for kids, not their parents!)

This free contest is open to fifth grade students in public, private, and parochial, charter, and home schools throughout the Philadelphia area. Students may participate in this event individually or with a partner. If you are registering with a building partner, you only need to submit one form, but must provide an email address and parent/guardian contact of the building partner.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What exactly is this contest?
    It may be easiest to think of the contest like a science fair, except instead of making a science project, students build a model home. Contestants spend time before the contest building their three-dimensional model dream home and then present it on the day of the contest along with a written paragraph as to why this is their dream home. Judges will evaluate each entry based upon originality and creativity, use of materials, appearance and design, and independent effort.
  • Who can participate in this contest?
    Any fifth-grader in public, private, charter, parochial, or homeschool (or any other type of schooling we missed) can participate!
  • Can I work in a group of three or more?
    Sorry, but you may only work individually or with one partner. We want to ensure that each team member has contributed and been fully engaged in the project, which becomes difficult with a larger group. We can also only fit so many people behind a table the day of the contest!
  • Are there any restrictions or requirements on what I can use to build my house?
    Your house must be three-dimensional and fit on a base no larger than 2ft x 3ft and are not permitted to use liquids during the presentation of your house (we want to keep the venue floors clean!). Please also know that electrical outlets will not be made available.
  • Do I need to be present for the contest?
    Yes, the contestant that builds the house must be there to present their model to the judges. If working in a pair and one contestant is unable to make it, you may present the home with only one contestant present.
  • Can I drop my child off at the contest and pick them up later?
    All children must be accompanied by an adult for the duration of the contest.
  • Can I bring my other children to this event?
    Absolutely! Even though the contest itself is only open to fifth graders, the whole family can attend. While contestants receive raffle tickets, a light snack, and are eligible for prizes, there will be food for purchase and activities for the rest of the family!
  • Can my business be part of the sponsorship for Build a House?
    Absolutely! Click here to view our sponsorship opportunities.

Volunteer for the Event
Build a House…Build a Dream would not be a successful event without the help of an amazing group of volunteers! Below is a list of volunteer opportunities available. To sign up, please complete the information below and return to Latifa Raheem, Outreach Coordinator, via mail or email by March 1. You will receive a confirmation when your form is received. Questions? Call 610-384-7993, ext. 15. Volunteers must be 15 years of age or older.

Fields marked with an * are required
Location and Helpful Links

 

Church Farm School logo

 

The contest will take place in the Pavilion located on Church Farm School’s campus on Saturday, March 21, 2020. Church Farm School (CFS) is located at 1001 Lincoln Highway, Exton.

Church Farm School is a day and boarding college preparatory school for boys in grades 9-12 offering a competitive, affordable and personalized education in Chester County, PA. Learn more about Church Farm School at www.gocfs.net.

  • Curriculum Guide for Teachers
    There are many ways for teachers to incorporate Build a House into their curriculum. This helpful sheet offers some tips for integrating the contest into your lesson plans for a variety of different subjects.
  • Event Description
    See this document for complete contest details and guidelines.
  • Contest Flyer
    Help us spread the word! Bring this flyer into your school or show it to your favorite fifth grader!
  • Habitat Videos
    Can’t quite find the words to explain Habitat’s mission to children? You’ll find plenty of videos on Habitat International’s YouTube channel, but this short video featuring a Habitat homeowner’s charismatic child is our favorite!
  • Quick Clip of Last Year
    Check out Bill Henley talking about the contestants from last year’s contest.

Build A House…Build A Dream 2020 Registration

Fields marked with an * are required

 

Participants will receive a confirmation email within 2 business days of registering. As we get closer to the event, you will receive an email with final details. It is important that you add becki@hfhcc.org to your email contacts, as our .org email addresses oftentimes get sent directly to your email’s spam folder.

There will be a photographer on the premise who will be taking event photos. By entering this contest, parents and guardians are allowing photographs of their children to be taken and used for publicity and/or news purposes.

Entries will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis, as space constraints may limit the amount of entries accepted. The deadline to register is March 1.

2nd Building A Thirst Brewery Ticket Book Fundraiser

We have recruited nine Chester County breweries to participate in our 2nd Building a Thirst brewery ticket book fundraiser. Each book contains tickets redeemable for a free beer at each brewery between January 1 and September 2, 2019. Books are $40 (cash only) and will be sold at the following dates and locations:

Locust Lane Brewing, 50 Three Tun Rd., Suite 4, Malvern
Friday, January 18, 5:30PM-7:30PM
Stable 12 Brewing Company, 368 Bridge St., Phoenixville
Wednesday, January 23, 6PM-10Pm
Rec Room by Conshohocken Brewing, 230 Bridge St., Phoenixville
Tuesday, February 5, 6PM-10PM
Levante Brewing, 208 Carter Dr, Ste 2, West Chester
Wednesday February 6, 6PM-9PM
La Cabra Brewing, 642 Lancaster Ave., Berwyn
Tuesday, February 12, 6PM-9PM
Crowded Castle Brewing, 242 Bridge St., Phoenixville
Saturday, February 16, 7PM-9PM
Root Down Brewing Company, 1 North Main St., Phoenixville
Thursday, February 21, 6PM-10PM

For more sales dates and information visit our events page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/chescohabitat/events/

Or email info@hfhcc.org

Special thanks to all the breweries participating: