Two brothers turn a successful home renovation business into a reality show on the DIY Network.
Do you like this story?
It’s easy to see why brothers Terrence and Jonathan Wittmaack, stars of the new reality show Brothers on Call, are referred to by the DIY Network as polar opposites.
“Terry’s married with three children and lives in suburbia,” says Jon, 35. “I’m single and live in Hoboken. He’s level-headed and I’m a complete nut.”
The brothers are co-owners of Man Around the House, a Ridgewood-based home renovation and remodeling business launched by their father, John Wittmaack, in the early 1990s. The senior Wittmaack envisioned a modest business “to change lightbulbs for old ladies with big houses,” they say. The business grew and Terry, who lives in Ridgewood, joined forces with his dad. After John Wittmaack died in 2002, Jon joined the business.
The brothers might be opposites, but their skills are complementary. “I’m the businessman, Terry’s the builder,” says Jon. Together they’ve built a thriving local business; Terry, 40, claims they’ve done work on at least 50 percent of the 8,000 homes in Ridgewood.
Now they are building new careers as reality-TV stars. Brothers on Call, which premieres at 9 pm on October 16, is intended to both entertain and inform homeowners looking for tutorials on everything from building a deck to hanging a swing. Each episode unspools in three parts: the planning, the build and the reveal. “The final reveal part is where the homeowner goes, ‘Wow, I can’t believe how awesome my kitchen is,’” says Jon.
The brothers have mixed feelings about becoming celebrities. “It’s almost surreal; we’re so excited,” says Terry, adding they have had a number of concerns since being approached about doing a show. “My biggest concern is my family,” Terry says. He wants to make sure viewers know “my brother and I may have differences of opinion, but at the end of the day we have a common goal, and we’re hard workers who run a legitimate business.”
Jon has his concerns, too, not least that he and Terry might be lumped in with other New Jersey reality TV stars known for less-constructive exploits. Jon is doing his best to avoid any confusion pre-emptively: “Basically, we don’t use gel in our hair,” he says.
Interview with Happy-Chic Tastemaker Jonathan Adler
Fashion Forward: Chic, Rattle & Roll Fashion Mobile
Miami Vibe: A Rundown Carriage House Becomes An Entertainment Center
Stylephile: Bunny Williams
Coming Home: The New Kitchen Comes First
Coming Home: A "Castle" Restored
Thank you for signing up!
If you want to go away Thanksgiving weekend but not too far, Crystal Springs Resort in Hamburg has lots of Thanksgiving dining options—and overnight packages. Plus, lots of other New Jersey restaurants will be open on Thanksgiving.
Talk about racking up bragging rights. New Brunswick’s Stage Left Restaurant is giving 20 lucky (and presumably well-heeled) whisky aficionados the opportunity to hand over $1,800 for a single, one-ounce shot of a rare 50-year-old Scotch.
...to the reception for my solo show, my first in nine years and biggest yet—45 pictures, many of them recent. Come for the photographs, stay for the Schnackenberg doughnuts. The best!
At the newly-opened Jockey Hollow Bar & Kitchen in Morristown, I was handed a cocktail called a Cannon Ball Shrub, named for the restaurant's spirited owner, Chris Cannon. Made with gin, the drink had pungency, fruity sweetness and a tingle from a splash of sparkling wine.
Our popular May shopping issue featured many of the state's best consignment shops. Get your fall fashion fix at DoubleTake boutiques in Red Bank, Short Hills, Englewood and Ridgewood...