Lawrence among 16 finalists for Canada’s Handyman Challenge

A former Sylvan Lake resident is among 16 finalists in Canada’s Handyman Challenge which appears on HGTV Canada.

A former Sylvan Lake resident is among 16 finalists in Canada’s Handyman Challenge which appears on HGTV Canada.

Doug Lawrence, 33, of Cochrane, was chosen after judges reviewed hundreds of projects and the results of intense audition challenges.

Each contestant was tasked with making an original plywood project to impress the judges before competing in challenges ranging from building rocking horses and mini putt courses to catapults and water towers.

The competition continued Tuesday night (after press time) with finalists thrown into skill-testing battles that push the limits of their creativity, resourcefulness, and fundamental handyman knowledge, according to a news release from HGTV. “They’ll go from building an entire patio space to facing a one-on-one quiz with each judge, with unexpected twists thrown in along the way. The season culminates in an impressive finale build, where Mike Holmes (Holmes Makes It Right) adds his expertise to the all-star judging panel to award the winner of Canada’s Handyman Challenge with $25,000 and the title of Canada’s Best Handyman.”

Lawrence graduated from H. J. Cody High School “and may or may not have learned a thing or two he used on the show in Mr. Solomon’s shop class,” said his sister, Debra Andersen. “He’s already a bit of a town celebrity for the epic Christmas light displays he used to rig at our parent’s place.”

His biography on the program’s website states, “Whether it’s helping turn his aunt’s basement into a rental unit or adding a sleeping platform and running water to his SUV, Doug loves doing it all. A cabinet maker, Doug comes from a handyman family and admits he took his talents for granted until competing with Canada’s best. Originally from Sylvan Lake, Alta., Doug now lives in Cochrane with his wife and dog.”