After Dick Van Dyke found out his childhood home was scheduled to be demolished, the TV legend found a way to do something about it.
The AP reports that Van Dyke — known for his early 1960s CBS sitcom “The Dick Van Dyke Show” as well as appearances in feature films such as “Bye Bye Birdie” and “Mary Poppins” — announced plans this weekend to have the house restored.
The two-story home in Danville, Ill., was condemned last December because of its dilapidated condition, with Van Dyke hearing about it this summer, the AP notes. Now Van Dyke, 89, has announced that the house will become the headquarters for a new foundation that will award scholarships to young performers.
“Organizers of the Dick Van Dyke Foundation hope to establish a museum in the home where Van Dyke and brother Jerry lived during high school after the family relocated from Missouri,” the AP reports. A new foundation is being formed that will seek nonprofit status.
In a news release from the Dick Van Dyke Foundation, the group’s board president, Lance Kirkland, said Van Dyke and his wife, Arlene, “look forward to working with the community of Danville to inspire the town’s young talent to follow in Dick and Jerry’s footsteps. The foundation hopes to quickly expand its reach to provide support to young singers, dancers and actors across the country.”