To celebrate our 20th season on national television, we’re highlighting some of the great improvements people are making in their communities all over the country.

We traveled to Tulsa, Oklahoma to help the Home Builders Association of Greater Tulsa with a service project at a local nonprofit called Manna House.

The Today’s Homeowner team with Ade Bakare of Launch Outreach/Manna House and members of the Home Builders Association of Greater Tulsa.

Manna House is a transitional living home for young women who have aged out of the foster care system. The program provides a safe and supportive environment for the residents while focusing on mentoring, educating, and developing life and social skills.

Building the Cedar Pergola

Members of the local Remodelers Council, who also served as carpenters on this project, designed a beautiful cedar arbor as the shady focal point of the patio. To reclaim some valuable real estate, we moved the AC unit to a nearby slab. Then we cleaned and painted the concrete patio to give us a fresh blank slate.

Check out Cleaning and Staining a Concrete Patio or Porch for tips.

The volunteers had cut and stained the lumber for the pergola earlier in the week, so building the structure went quickly once we were all on site. The addition of corner braces not only look attractive, they also add rigidity to keep the pergola from tilting or twisting. Finally, we added some large carriage bolts to the major timber joints and trimmed out the column bases.

The volunteers work together to build the pergola.
The pergola, patio furniture, grill and plants create a homey outdoor space for the residents.

Watch How to Build a Pergola Shade Arbor for Your Yard for details on this project.

The Finishing Touches

The residents of Manna House already felt at home inside, but we wanted to bring that feeling of warmth and comfort outside as well.

Amenities like the gas grill, patio furniture from Overstock, planters from Southern Patio, and Moonrays string lights complete the outdoor retreat.

To create a neat and secure spot in the yard for the ladies to store their bikes, we added a commercial-style bike rack.

The bike rack provides a secure spot for the ladies’ bikes.

Other Tips from This Episode
Simple Solutions with Joe Truini: Tip for Leveling Wood Patio Furniture

Here’s a tip to address two common problems with wood patio furniture: the tendency to rot from sitting on wet concrete, and to wobble from sitting on an uneven slab. Watch the video.
Best New Products with Jodi Marks: Ridgid 5-Outlet Power Hub

Unlike typical power strips, this 5-outlet indoor/outdoor power hub from Ridgid is designed to accommodate large plugs, so none of the receptacles will be blocked. It is available at The Home Depot. Watch the video.
Editorial Contributors
avatar for Danny Lipford

Danny Lipford


Danny Lipford is a home improvement expert and television personality who started his remodeling business, Lipford Construction, at the age of 21 in Mobile, Alabama. He gained national recognition as the host of the nationally syndicated television show, Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford, which started as a small cable show in Mobile. Danny's expertise in home improvement has also led him to be a contributor to popular magazines and websites and the go-to source for advice on everything related to the home. He has made over 200 national television appearances and served as the home improvement expert for CBS's The Early Show and The Weather Channel for over a decade. Danny is also the founder of 3 Echoes Content Studio,, and Checking In With Chelsea, a décor and lifestyle blog.

Learn More