DYERSBURG, Tenn.– A Dyersburg, Tennessee man passionate to spread the word of the Lord has created a scaled-down model of Noah’s Ark, complete with a variety of animals.

To fully understand why this scaled-down model of Noah’s Ark is set up in Dyersburg, one has to know the spiritual transformation its builder Wayde Jackson went through.

“Twenty-four years ago I went to treatment for drugs and alcohol and when I got out I knew that my life had to change,” Jackson said.

And change it did for Wayde Jackson starting with daily bible study and, 20 years ago, building a living nativity scene and Noah’s Ark in the front yard of his Dyersburg home.

Jackson wanted to reach more people with his biblical creations, so eleven years ago he got permission to set up in front of Cumberland Presbyterian Church.

This week, he started building his version of Noah’s Ark and amazingly had it completed in four days.

“It took a minute to put it all together and then it really took a minute when we started building it because there was no plans. We had no plans. The plans was all up here,” Jackson said.

Of course, the Ark needs animals, so Friday morning about 40 varieties, one male and one female, of everything from goats and sheep to sheep, llamas, alpacas, and large tortoises took up temporary residence.

It wasn’t long before adults and youngsters arrived to feed them by hand.

“I think it’s fantastic. It’s something we look forward to. It just brings a little bit of joy, a little bit of smiles around, and the kids…they love it. That’s the best part,” said Dyersburg resident Amy Day.

For Jackson, this is a labor of love and a piece of the bible he especially hopes youngsters will take with them.

Building materials and feed for the animals were donated and there is no charge for attending. Wayne Jackson said ironically there may be a slight chance for rain Saturday, but he doesn’t expect a long-term weather event.

The Ark will be on display at the Cumberland Presbyterian Church for the next 10 to 12 days.