Ripley residents to star in new season of Make 48 premiering September 12 on MPB Television
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Jackie McKenzie, Palmer Jones, Shadrach Spight
Courtesy of Make 48

JACKSON, Miss. – Three Ripley, Mississippi residents will be among the creative and inventive individuals who put their skills to the test in season two of Make 48 premiering at 10 p.m. September 12 on MPB Television.

Jackie McKenzie, Palmer Jones and Shadrach Spight call themselves the A-Team on Make 48 – a competition documentary-style series. They competed against several other teams who had to create a commercial product idea, develop a prototype and a promotional video, and then present their idea to judges within 48 hours. The series then follows the top three winning teams as they try to get their products to market.

The Ripley men are lifelong friends who grew up together participating in Boy Scouts. McKenzie is now a Ripley city alderman. Jones is a mechanic with his own shop, and Spight has a few jobs; he works at the Tippah County Sheriff’s Department, is a Ripley police officer and is a mortician. Needless to say, they make up an innovative trio.

McKenzie convinced his friends to go with him to check out the Make 48 competition three years ago before it was a television series. They had such a great time, they were invited back.

“We actually got to meet a lot of people from all over the world,” Jones said. Investors, product creators and hosts from Shark Tank – an entrepreneurship reality program on ABC – were among those in attendance.

The men are restricted on giving away too many details about the show, what they created and their experience but Jones did say that, “it was a lot of pressure” to complete the product. The creative process included doing research to ensure a product had not been created. Patent attorneys were on hand to give the OK.

Everyone will need to watch the series to see how far the A-Team makes it in the contest. In the meantime, the men are reveling in their opportunity of a lifetime.

“It’s been like a dream come true for us and a very humbling experience,” McKenzie said. “Anybody who wants to do it too should go for it.”

“This show will prove to people that their pre-exposure of Mississippi is not what they think,” said Jones, considering the show will air on PBS stations across the nation. “We are diverse, but we’re all together and we have a lot of creative ideas.”