Warren's Light-hearted structures serve a serious purpose By MICHAEL STRAND The Salina Journal • - etiring after some ' 30 years with Sears, Warren Young joined a Methodist mission trip to Appalachia, where he worked on building homes for people who needed < them. When he returned to Salina, he saw much the same need here. So in 1992, he joined Salina's Habitat for Humanity and has had a hand in 16 of the 17 homes the organization has built. He's also built three more homes in his garage. OK, so those three are kind of small — they're really playhouses". But they've become one of the main attractions at Habitat's annual fund-raising auction. Last year's home sold for $1,350. "They're really well- built," Young said, walking around the latest home last week while it was on display at Central Mall; the auction was Satiu-day. "It's got cedar trim, and the windows swing out. They're Plexiglas, so they won't break." "Somebody asked me if I'd be interested in building a playhouse, and I said, 'Sure.'" Warren Young Habitat for Humanity volunteer There's also lots of little details, such as the scalloped shingles — which Young and his sons cut using tin snips, with a coffee-can lid as a template. His sons Royce and Lee help build the playhouses, and son Kevin, who's an architect, draws the plans. In all. Young estimates there's $100 to $125 worth of materials — and many, many hours of labor in each house. "I started on this one in August, in my garage," he said. "I stopped when it got cold and started up again in the spring." Young started building playhouses three years ago, but it wasn't his idea. "Somebody asked me if I'd be interested in building a playhouse, and I said, 'Sure,' " he recalled. He doesn't build the playhouses to sell outright — as he tells one woman who approached him at the mall last week. See HOUSES, Page 8 TOM DORSEY / The Salina Journal Habitat for Humanity volunteer Warren Young uses liis construction experience to build playhouses that are auctioned annually to raise money for the local Habitat chapter.
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