Fry family

Justin and Megan Fry with their children, left to right, Kailer, 10; Kolton, 8; and Camden, 13 in a Papillion neighborhood.

Plenty of folks dial up HGTV, but a Papillion family jumped beyond that.

Justin and Megan Fry and their three kids will be featured in an episode of HGTV’s “House Hunters Family,” a spinoff of the series where parents and kids search for homes together. The family looked at two homes in Papillion and one in Omaha’s Benson area. The episode is scheduled to air at 9 p.m. Aug. 21.

“It was a once-in-a-lifetime family memory,” Megan Fry said.

The family plans to move into their new home this fall.

There’s long been chatter on the Internet that people featured on the “House Hunters” series aren’t necessarily starting their home search from scratch when filming starts. There are even rumors that some people on the show have a home picked out beforehand.

Megan Fry said the family can’t address that or what home they decided to buy, because of their contract with HGTV. But she said the show gave the whole family a chance to share what they wanted in a new house.

Megan Fry said an HGTV crew of about a dozen spent three days filming the family in May. The crew followed them as they visited the three homes with real estate agent Ethan Brown of Coldwell Banker Real Estate Associates, who is a former neighbor and friend.

Justin Fry said it was interesting to see the behind-the-scenes aspects of the show, like the 10 GoPro cameras set up in the family’s SUV to capture them as they cruised around looking at homes. There was also a van that drove ahead with a camera operator to film them as they got out of their SUV and walked up to the house.

Two camera operators would film them inside the home’s entry as their real estate agent described the property. Then the family would wait as the crew set up in other rooms.

Megan Fry said it was a little hard at first getting used to having cameras and mics around. The crew gave them simple advice: Ignore us and focus on the house.

She said her three kids are all outgoing and adjusted just fine.

Said 10-year-old Kailer: “I got kinda used to it.”

He said he especially liked playing basketball with the crew on his home court. His two siblings joined him on the show — Camden, 13, and Kolton, 8.

Megan Fry said her sister encouraged her to apply for the show, partly because the family was already considering getting a new home. The Papillion house they’ve been in for 10 years near 96th Street and Schram Road suffered storm damage last year and water damage from a plumbing problem.

It’s all been fixed and the house is in great shape, the Frys said, but they figured the timing was right to start a new chapter in a home that has all the features they want.

So what were the kids looking for in a new house?

Camden wanted a bedroom with a bay window and a window seat, and her own bathroom far away from her two brothers.

Kailer thought a walk-in pantry would be perfect for the kitchen.

Kolton wanted a feature that the family could splash around in  : a pool.

The crew provided plenty of food and snacks for the family, but when one kid happened to mention some Goldfish crackers would be tasty, a crew member went to the store and bought some. When the Gatorade ran out, a crew member fetched some more from the store.

The family is looking forward to watching the show at a viewing party hosted by a relative.

Megan Fry said the episode will probably give the family plenty to rib each other about.

“There are going to be jokes for the rest of our lives,” she said.

oconnor@owh.com, 402-444-1122

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