About Jonna Mayberry

I’m the editor of Wisconsin Public Television’s program guide, Airwaves, as well as a publicist. In my free time, you’ll find me thrift shopping, reading the latest memoir or history book, and watching Independent Lens. I run on coffee and puns. Follow me @JonnaMayberry or email me at jonnatha.mayberry@wpt.org.


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Watch, Bid & Win! WPT Auction Airs June 1-5

Support Wisconsin Public Television — Watch the WPT Auction!

Lights, camera, Auction! Join in on the fun as Wisconsin Public Television’s largest fundraising event kicks off another year of bidding fun at 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 1! Now in its 41st year, the WPT Auction invites viewers to bid on merchandise from Wisconsin businesses during a live TV broadcast. There are great deals available, and all the proceeds support Wisconsin Public Television programs and outreach initiatives!

Bid on vacation packages, gift certificates, home and garden items, sports tickets to the Packers, Badgers and others, jewelry, art and more. Each night there is a different theme, and big ticket items valued at $1,500 or more will be auctioned off during the Auction Showcase Sunday, June 5.

2016 Auction Schedule

7 p.m. Wednesday, June 1* Entertainment & Hobby

7 p.m. Thursday, June 2* Home & Garden

7 p.m. Friday, June 3 Sports & Recreation

4-7 p.m. Saturday, June 4* Kids & Family

7 p.m. Saturday, June 4 Travel

4-7 p.m. Sunday, June 5 Marketplace

7 p.m. Sunday, June 5 Showcase

*Auction is broadcast to the WHA-TV viewing area only at these times. (Watch online and take part in the fun from anywhere at any time during Auction!)

Watch Auction anywhere via the simultaneous online stream at auction.wpt.org. Use #WPTAuction on social media to share how you’re participating in Auction!

Want more Auction? Check out online-only items in the Deal of the Day category even now before Auction begins! More items will be added every day throughout Auction.

Start browsing hundreds of items now and pre-bid at auction.wpt.org. Learn how to pre-bid below!

Five Incredibly Catchy PBS Theme Songs

My brain’s wonderful at sopping up theme songs, commercial jingles and mediocre 1990s pop songs like a sponge. Is it a talent? A curse? The judges are out.

When it comes to theme songs, PBS has delivered some true gems over the years. Here are five of those songs that you might have forgotten about … or might still be able to recite word-for-catchy-word.

Continue reading Five Incredibly Catchy PBS Theme Songs

Your Guide to British Drama Season Premieres

We may have said farewell to Downton Abbey, but British dramas still reign on WPT. March brings new seasons of Grantchester on Masterpiece and Mr. Selfridge on Masterpiece, and April welcomes a new season of Call the Midwife.

Clear your Sunday evenings and make a date with your favorite midwives, vicars and entrepreneurs. View premiere dates and season previews below.

Grantchester on Masterpiece: Season 2
Premieres 8 p.m. Sunday, March 27
Enjoy a new season of adventures, matchmaking and murder with vicar Sidney Chambers and veteran cop Geordie Keating.

Mr. Selfridge on Masterpiece: Season 4
Premieres 9 p.m. Sunday, March 27
See Jeremy Piven in the thrilling final season that dramatizes the climactic battle for the future of London’s iconic department store,
Selfridge & Co.

Call the Midwife: Season 5
Premieres 7 p.m. Sunday, April 3
Rejoin the nurses and midwives for a fifth season. It’s 1961 and Poplar is beginning to feel the winds of social change, along with improvements in housing, sanitation and healthcare.

Saying Farewell to Downton Abbey

As of 10 p.m. Sunday night, the phenomenon known as Downton Abbey is officially over. I’m a Downton fan (see: The Downton Dish), so I spent my weekend trying to squeeze in as much Downton as possible before the finale.

My all-things-Downton weekend included attending Wisconsin Public Television’s A Downton Abbey Farewell fundraising event, held Saturday night at the University Club in Madison. It was so much fun to mingle with fellow fans, dress up in 1920s attire and enjoy Downton-themed food and music. The amazing team that puts the event together really goes all out to give guests the complete Downton Abbey experience, and the excitement was contagious. (View photos from Saturday’s event here).

The show might be over, but our love of Downton Abbey doesn’t have to stop. Check out Masterpiece’s The Downton Abbey Connection to stay connected to your favorite characters, hear from other fans, take Downton-inspired quizzes to find out if you’re a superfan, and more!

Fellow Downton fans: We’ll get through this.

The Downton Dish: Episode 9

A million romances (old and new), butler news, and a new baby! Downton Abbey: The Final Season has been a potpourri of highs and lows, and the series finale was no different. Join us for our final episode of The Downton Dish as we recap the finale’s many developments and reflect on the fates of our favorite characters.

Watch the complete series of “The Downton Dish” here.

The Downton Dish: Special Edition

While a new episode of Downton Abbey won’t be airing this Sunday night — the finale airs 8 p.m. next Sunday, March 6 — we just couldn’t go a whole week without Downton, and luckily, we don’t have to. WPT is airing a Downton Abbey: The Final Season marathon beginning 11 a.m. Sunday. A lot happened this season, so this is the perfect time to catch up on important plot points before the series finale.

We’re also taking this time to reflect on some of our favorite moments from our video series, The Downton Dish. Kait and I have had such a blast recapping each episode of this season. We’ve laughed. We’ve cried. We’ve almost fallen off our chairs (literally). Here are just a few of our favorite clips:

Tom Branson returns —The remix:

Daisy’s at it again:

The hilarious Downton tour:

(Stay tuned: We’ll be back with one final episode of The Downton Dish after the series finale airs on March 6!)

It’s hard to accept the fact that Downton Abbey is almost over, but there’s still time to squeeze in as much Downton as possible. Join us for A Downton Abbey Farewell, 5:30 p.m. Saturday, March 5 at The University Club in Madison! It’s a fundraising event for WPT, and the event will feature Downton Abbey-inspired food and fun, both upstairs and downstairs, as the University Club is transformed into a lavish estate. Kait and I will be there and we’d love to meet you! Get all of the details here.

Dowager Insults: The Complete Collection

If you watch Downton Abbey, you’re likely in awe of the Dowager Countess’ (Maggie Smith) wit. Stubborn wouldn’t even begin to describe Lady Violet, but despite her faults, there’s no doubt that Downton Abbey just wouldn’t be the same without her sharp tongue.

Luckily, Slate Magazine has taken all of the Dowager’s sassiest moments and compiled them into one hilarious video. With only two more episodes to go until Downton Abbey: The Final Season is over (sadly), what better way to prepare to say goodbye than with a reflection on the Dowager’s best moments?

Director Stanley Nelson Visits Madison

Director Stanley Nelson’s work — which includes impactful American Experience documentaries Freedom Summer and Freedom Riders, and the unprecedented upcoming documentary The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution — is important, unrivaled and prolific.

In advance of the Feb. 16 nationwide premiere of The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution, the first feature-length documentary to explore the Black Panther Party in detail, Nelson is taking time out of his busy schedule to visit Madison this week.

While in Madison, Nelson will attend a free screening  at the Madison Central Library, sit down with Wisconsin Public Television Director’s Cut host Pete Schwaba for an exclusive interview about his film, and appear Tuesday, Feb. 9 at 3:15 p.m. on Wisconsin Public Radio’s Central Time.

Needless to say, everyone at WPT is excited to welcome Nelson to the studios, and we hope that you can take advantage of the opportunity to meet this prolific director while he’s here or tune in to one of his interviews. Check out the details of Nelson’s screening and appearances below, and mark your calendars for the premieres of Director’s Cut: Stanley Nelson and The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution Feb. 16 on WPT.

Continue reading Director Stanley Nelson Visits Madison

It’s the First Day of Winter: Celebrate With Virtual Snow!

Today marks the official first day of winter, a harbinger of more chilly, snow-filled weeks, which will eventually melt into slushy days as we prepare for spring. As I write this, the ground is currently devoid of snow here in Madison, which is a boon to holiday travels, but unfortunate for those fond of a white Christmas.


While we wish we could deliver actual snow to those who want it, virtual snow will have to do. For your daily dose of winter, check out this clip from Wisconsin Life, featuring Eau Claire’s super-talented snow carvers, Jason Anhorn and Steve Bateman.

Each year when Wisconsin winters are at their harshest, the professional artists set out to brighten the barren landscape, spending eight weeks carving blocks of compacted snow into larger-than-life sculptures in Eau Claire’s Boyd Park. I’m left feeling that my feeble attempts at snowmen don’t quite compare …

Celebrate International Tea Day With Violet Crawley

Violet Crawley, avid tea drinker and Dowager Countess of Grantham.

Today is International Tea Day, and what better way to celebrate than with some of Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham’s most witty quips and comebacks? Check out some of my favorites below, and post your own to add to the mix!

Downton Abbey: The Final Season premieres 8 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 3 on Wisconsin Public Television. Continue reading Celebrate International Tea Day With Violet Crawley