June 14--A reality TV show about an insurance company may seem boring, but Chehalis native Tyson Miltenberger is sure his latest project will be worth the time.
Miltenberger and his wife will begin filming a new reality TV series, "Milty's Millions," in Portland next month. The show follows the couple on their quest to make their first $1 ,illion. The couple owns and operates Selinus Insurance, which insures 400 bars, pubs, restaurants and clubs in the Portland Metro area.
"The insurance will actually be fun," Miltenberger said. "In the Portland Metro area, there are 1,200 bars and taverns. The bar owners we deal with, they are real people. They will tell you what is on their minds, what is going on in their minds. Crazy stuff happens."
Filming will begin on July 1 and last about six months. Miltenberger is shopping the pilot series to major networks. If it is picked up, Miltenberger said, he sees the show having the blue-collar appeal of "Duck Dynasty" on A&E along with the quirky family dynamics of "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo," on TLC.
"America will relate with us because we are going after what it is like where we grew up, me in Chehalis and my wife in Medford," Miltenberger said. "We are focusing on middle America, the blue collar people out there. That is our mission."
Miltenberger, a 1999 graduate of W.F. West High School, spent five years in the Navy after graduation. He then went to work in Centralia for Nicholson and Associates Insurance and eventually joined Fullerton and Co., the largest insurance agency in Oregon and Washington.
While working for Fullerton and Co., Miltenberger realized he wanted to specialize in bars and taverns so he created his own company, Selinus Insurance.
His wife, Erica Miltenberger, shares the same entrepreneurial spirit. She has opened and sold 17 different businesses in her life, including bridal shops, restaurants, a juice bar and a bagel shop.
"We're just showing people you can do things on your own," Miltenberger said. "If you want a goal, you have to take the first step."
Miltenberger said the reality TV show will focus about 40 percent on the business and 60 percent on Portland and his personal life. The Miltenbergers stay busy raising their four children, ages 1 to 13, along with operating their business.
Once filming starts, Miltenberger said, he will post a calendar on the show's website, www.miltysmillions.com, so people can stop by the bars and taverns where filming will take place.
Having Portland as the backdrop will add to the interest of the show, Miltenberger said.
"People want to be in Portland. It's the weirdest town in the United States of America," Miltenberger said. "People are curious about it."
Miltenberger, whose parents, Dennis and Karen, still live in Chehalis, said his upbringing in Lewis County helped shape his career and hopefully will help inspire the reality TV show.
The show will have a tally each episode to count the money raised up to $1 million.
"We will start from zero and the tally mark will show our progress," Miltenberger said. "That will keep you tuned in and rooting for us."
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