Shuswap car shop crew featured in new History reality show

By Adam Donnelly
December 7, 2018 - 5:00pm Updated: December 7, 2018 - 5:37pm

TAPPEN, BC — On Thursday night a brand new unscripted reality show premiered on History. It’s a show built around classic cars and the big personalities working to make them shine again, and it all takes place in Tappen, BC.

Rust Valley Restorers premiered on History last night, but on Friday the Rust Bros crew were back in the shop making TV magic.

“One day I woke with 400 cars going ‘what the hell have I done?’ I listed it all for sale and [the listing] went viral,” Mike Hall, owner of Rust Bros Restorations explains. “Matt and Tyson from Mayhem Entertainment came up, they were serious. They signed me to an option, said we’re going to make a car show on you. As they say, the rest is history.”

Hall is the star of the show, along with the hundreds of car he’s accumulated over the years. He’s also enlisted the help of his pal Avery Shoaf, amongst others. According to Showrunner Matthew Shewchuk, the natural chemistry the pair exude really shines on the small screen.

“It’s super entertaining because [Mike and Avery] are best friends, and like a lot of best friends, the can speak honestly to each other and that’s what great about it,” Shewchuk tells CFJC Today. “People think they’re hamming it up, but that’s just the way they are, and that’s what makes it so amazing.”

Shewchuk knew the personalities of the human characters would play well in an unscripted reality show setting, but the area around Mike’s shop in Tappen has almost taken on its own personality.

“Between Mike, Avery, and all the other people we have around here that we’ve discovered through our research,” Shewchuk says. “It’s been amazing. It’s really an ensemble group of documentary subjects that are in this really amazing, unique part of the world and part of Canada that we’re really proud to show off.”

After watching the premiere on History last night, Avery says he was impressed with how the show’s producers were able to capture the essence of the relationship he and Mike share.

“It is very much exactly how me and Mike are with each other,” Shoaf says. “His kids and all our friends always pick on us and say you guys are like an old married couple.”

Matt and his crew have been following Mike and Avery for the past eight months, but hope to wrap up production soon.

From Mike’s perspective, he’s hopeful the show brings some attention to Rust Bros Restoration, so he can reduce his collection by passing the vehicles on to new owners.

“A good buddy of mine, we bought [a car] off him and he said ‘Mike, the thing about these cars is we don’t own ‘em, we’re caretakers.’ If we do a good enough job, the next guy gets to caretake them too, and that’s kinda cool,” Hall says. “These cars, if they’re taken care of, they’re going to outlive me and outlive the next guy. It’s just preserving history.”

You can catch new episodes of Rust Valley Restorers Thursday nights on History. If you happen to be in the Shuswap and are looking for a classic car of your own to restore, Mike’s always taking offers.

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