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TLC network show to feature Malone native, unique houses

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MALONE — Cable network TLC will broadcast a show tonight featuring out-of-the-ordinary houses and north country residents.

“Surreal Estate” will air at 10 p.m. as a one-hour pilot episode. Jim LaValley of LaValley Real Estate said California-based production company LMNO contacted him when he was involved with the Paramount Pictures filming of the “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” in Tupper Lake during the winter.

“They asked me if I knew anybody that would be interesting in looking at (unique) properties, people who had ties to the north country, but no longer live here,” he said.

His first thought was Tim Coughlin, a Malone native, and his partner, Shon Parker, who is from Dothan, Ala.

“It’s a pilot displaying the most unique houses,” he said.

A house the production company found in Northern New York is the missile silo property in Saranac, Mr. LaValley said.

Filming in March took two days and the segment will probably be about 15 minutes, Mr. LaValley said.

The missile silo is virtually unknown because what lies on top of it looks like a normal house. But below the silo it features a condominium-like aspect.

“It’s incredible to see. ... It’s from the Cold War period,” Mr. Coughlin said.

Other unique houses for sale that will be shown include a Dr. Seuss home in Colorado and a pyramidal home in Arizona.

“These are outrageous places turned into homes,” Mr. Coughlin said. “It leaves you pondering. It has a bit of a shock value.”

Mr. Coughlin said the show’s basis is each couple’s reaction to the different homes.

“The idea is, ‘If you had a chance to purchase it, what would you do with the property?’” he said.

Mr. Coughlin’s segment will not only feature the ins and outs of the missile silo, it will glimpse into his childhood home in Malone.

He and Mr. Parker were filmed at Mr. Coughlin’s parents’ home at the Pine Crest Farm on Chasm Falls Road.

Mr. Coughlin and Mr. Parker work as interior designers for Atlanta-based Shon Parker Design Inc., which was founded in the spring of 2000, according to Mr. Coughlin.

The producers “wanted a background story about their lives,” Mr. LaValley said. “We talked about real estate and what they were doing by way of design down in Atlanta and their love for the north country.”

Mr. Coughlin and Mr. Parker will be shown working on projects in the Pine Crest Farm home. The show will also feature their design firm’s projects. Because of Mr. Coughlin’s ties to Northern New York, combined with Mr. Parker’s newfound love of the Adirondack Mountains, the couple extended their interior designing to the Adirondacks five years ago.

Since then, they purchased a condominium in Tupper Lake to work on.

“My grass roots are in the Adirondacks,” Mr. Coughlin said.

They have been working on interior decorating in cabins and other aspects of the Lake Placid Lodge and will continue to do so.

“They close in April for mud season. That’s when we work on revamping,” Mr. Coughlin said.

They also worked on the Adirondack Mountain Club and Resort for Tom and Susan Lawson and revamped his office in Tupper Lake.

Filming also took place at Malone’s Village Furniture with Debbie Cox.

“We’re shopping in her showroom,” Mr. Coughlin said.

The show will also feature the Titus Mountain Sugar House.

LMNO hired a producer from New York City and a filming crew consisting of a light, a camera and a sound worker from Vermont for the segment, according to Mr. Coughlin.

“They were great,” he said. “We had a lot of fun.”

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