Revisiting Dreamscape 2014: Steve Williams and David Jesse

By: Nalee vang, Communications Intern

In our last “Revisiting” blog post, we had the opportunity to follow up with the 2013 Dreamscape winner, the Akron Rotary Camp. Don’t miss out on that blog post; read it now!

In 2014, lucky homeowners, Steve Williams and David Jesse, won the Dreamscape raffle, which allows the winner to have the landscape makeover of their dreams worth over $10,000! Craig Graf and Lisa Graf of Graf Growers Garden Center and Landscaping were the lead landscapers. Many renovations were done including planting trees and flowers, light fixtures and installation of a maintenance-free fence and a pergola. For details of the whole process, read “Dreamscape Makeover Provided Finishing Touches to West Akron Home“.


The results were amazing, and seeing the transformation through photos really showed how much work was put into this Dreamscape makeover. We wondered how Steve and David have been keeping up with their exciting change, so we did some catching up of our own with Steve:

Nalee Vang: What was your initial reaction after finding out that you won the Dreamscape Makeover?
Steve Williams: Well, first, [was] shocked.  We absolutely never thought we would be the winners! Then, our thoughts turned into what we would change in our yard now that we had the chance.

NV: The transformation in the ‘before’ and ‘after’ picture was beautiful. What was your favorite part of the makeover?  
SW: Working with Grafs to design the space and then watching the transformation unfold. It was amazing to watch the craftsmanship that the crew from each firm brought to the project.

KAB-Dreamscape-DrawingNV: How has the makeover changed your home?  
SW: We now have this amazing outdoor living space. We spend more time outside, when the weather permits, relaxing, enjoying the space and entertaining.

NV: Has there been any challenges keeping up with the renovations?  
SW: Well, once the renovation was underway, we realized we would need furniture for the space as well!  Thankfully, we found some wonderful pieces that give it the feel of an outdoor living room, which complimented our existing patio area perfectly.

NV: Looking back at the whole process, what are some reflections or thoughts you have that you want to share with us?
SW: The staff of Keep Akron Beautiful were wonderful and did a very good job of keeping us informed about what would happen along the way.

NV: Were you pleased with the results?
SW: Absolutely!  We could not be more pleased with the outcome.

NV: What is some advice for future winners?
SW: Be prepared for A LOT of change in a very short time!  It can seem overwhelming at times, but hang in there, because the end result is SO worth it!

NV: Would you recommend purchasing a ticket for the Dreamscape Makeover?
SW: Most certainly.  By purchasing a ticket, you help continue the excellent work being done to beautify our community at Keep Akron Beautiful.  Winning was just a bonus!


The Dreamscape Makeover Raffle is Keep Akron Beautiful’s annual fundraiser that was developed 12 years ago to help support our public land beautification program, Flowerscape. We are so happy that Steve and David enjoyed their Dreamscape experience with us! Now, you have a chance to win your very own Dreamscape Makeover too! Purchase a ticket now!

Dreamscape Makeover Provided Finishing Touches to West Akron Home

By: Genevieve Bohnak, The University of Akron Intern 

The Dreamscape Raffle makeover process for the property of Steven Williams and David 1Jesse of West Akron is happening right now through August 8th. Craig Graf and Lisa Graf, of Graf Growers Garden Center and Landscaping are the lead landscape designers for this year’s project. The makeover process began last week when Advanced Arboriculture began removing trees from the backyard. Graf Growers and Nick’s Landscaping of Ohio, LLC began their work over the weekend breaking down the site to prepare the yard for the week’s landscape makeover. Excavation equipment was rented from Copley Tool Rental.

Monday- day one, Gates Landscaping Co. started the prep work for the installation of the hardscaping for the patio and fire pit with pavers and sand/gravel donated by Belgard® Sales and W.L. Tucker Supply respectively. The hardscaping installation continues through Wednesday with both R.B. Stout, Inc. and Graf Growers laying the patio extension. R.G. Thomas Landscape and Design, Inc. have begun installing maintenance -free 5fence and pergola.

Keep Akron Beautiful’s Flowerscape Crew, working side by side with a crew from Paul’s Greenhouse, will spend Friday morning planting. All of the plants and one new shade tree are being provided by Dayton Nurseries, Pam’s Perennial Plant Farm, and Suncrest Gardens. Two planted urns are being donated by Donzells Flower and Garden Center. Topsoil and compost are will be supplied by KB BioEnergy, Inc. and blown into the beds on Friday by TerraScape Ltd. Tim’s Custom Electric will install light fixtures under caps, donated by Cascade Lighting, Inc., to provide the finishing touches on a dramatic backyard living room design.

Thanks to Circle K, Earth Fare-Fairlawn and Main Street Gourmet for providing beverages, ice, cookie dough, energy bars and drinks for the Vendor Partner crew members during this summer week of labor. It took a team effort of green professionals and we will all be proud of the final result!

A special thanks to Hitchcock Fleming & Associates, Inc., Star Printing Co. Inc. & YES Press Printing Co., and our marketing and communications media Vendor Partner companies. All proceeds from the sales of the 1,500 Dreamscape tickets will be used to fund the Keep Akron Beautiful Flowerscape public beautification program.2