Events

A Word With WPT’s Director of Television: Tuscany

My wife Mary and I recently returned from the WPT tour of Tuscany. It was a wonderful trip guided by our friends from Holiday Vacations. It’s hard to believe how beautiful Tuscany is until you travel there. The beauty is everywhere, including at every dinner table.

In fact, it was hard to leave Tuscany behind. Our trip reminded me of how, when you’re considering buying a car, you seem to see it everywhere. That was true for us with Tuscany, except that we didn’t see it on the roads – we saw it on PBS. Continue reading A Word With WPT’s Director of Television: Tuscany

WPT at the Wisconsin Science Festival

Today, kids all across the state were learning about science through hands-on experiments, games and puzzles at the annual Wisconsin Science Festival. WPT joined the fun in Madison at the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery, hosting a booth with some lessons on UV rays and their effects. The Cat in the Hat helped teach all about our skin – what it’s made of, how it works and why we need it!

If you’re looking to learn and play at the same time, join us! WPT will be at the WID all weekend, with an appearance from the Cat in the Hat himself on Saturday. We hope to see you there!

Behind the Scenes of Quilt Expo: Award-Winning Artist Cindy Frese

“Everybody loves everybody at Quilt Expo. Strangers are like best friends. I usually go with a few other ladies from the quilt guild, and there are vendors who are like family to us.” — Cindy Frese, Kenosha, WI

When Cindy Frese, one of the first-prize winners from last year’s Quilt Expo, says she’s “quilted in some odd places,” it’s an understatement.

“I did 20 years in the Navy and met my husband there. He worked with the State Department when I retired, and I followed him around to different embassies,” Frese says. “We lived in Nigeria for a couple of years, and were there for their first democratic election. We were in Egypt on September 11. We lived in Mexico and Mali. The first day after I retired, we went into Kuwait. That was in 1991, and the oil fires were still burning. So I’m taking two toddlers in, the first family to go back in after the war.”

Frese started quilting after the birth of her first daughter, and despite distance or difficulty, Frese took her hobby wherever she went.

“Kuwait was great for quilting because you could go to the open markets – there were no stores open at the time,” Frese says. “The ambassador’s wife and I were the only ones there, as far as government families went, but we met some oil company wives. We had nothing to do, so I taught them to quilt.”

Throughout her travels, Frese has found a way to work sewing and quilting into her life.

“My husband knows I pack more fabric than clothing. I can always sew something if I need to,” Frese says. “One time I did turn quilting fabric into evening gowns. Barbara Bush came to visit in Kuwait, and suddenly everyone needed something to wear.”

As she became familiar with different cultures, Frese began to appreciate the unique aspects of each region’s fabrics.

Are you ready for Quilt Expo this morning? Here’s a very fast 15-second sneak peek at the quilt contest exhibit. We hope you’ll get to spend a bit more time with these beautiful quilts today through Saturday!

Posted by Quilt Expo on Thursday, September 10, 2015

 

Continue reading Behind the Scenes of Quilt Expo: Award-Winning Artist Cindy Frese

Get Up and Go With Wisconsin Public Television!

Get Up and Go! Day 2015

Wisconsin Public Television’s PBS Kids Get Up and Go! Day takes place one week from today: 10 a.m. to noon Friday, Aug. 7! Mark your calendar and join us at this fun-filled, free event that encourages children to live healthy and active lives.

PBS Kids Get Up and Go! Day
Visit WPT’s YouTube channel to watch archived video from Get Up and Go! Day 2014!

Get Up and Go! Day is held in locations across the state, and each location features music, dancing, favorite PBS Kids characters, hands-on activities and crafts, community organizations and more. Families, day care groups and other childcare organizations are welcome to attend! Continue Reading for information o

Continue reading Get Up and Go With Wisconsin Public Television!

Preparations for Quilt Expo are Underway

Every year a ton of work goes into making Quilt Expo a great place to “Escape. Create. Celebrate.” and one of the most rewarding tasks — processing entries in the 10-category juried and judged Quilt Contest — is now complete.

With hundreds of entries, it took a jury a full afternoon and most of the evening to sort through all the quilts and to choose the best order for displaying them. It’s a grueling task, but I can assure you the jury was looking forward to spending hours scrutinizing every stitch and detail of the quilts.

We snuck into the jury room and snapped some photos to give you an idea of how they make their decisions. Check out the photos below, and remember to see the quilts for yourself at the Quilt Contest exhibit at this year’s Quilt Expo, Sept. 10-12 in Madison. Continue reading Preparations for Quilt Expo are Underway

PBS Healthy Lunchtime Challenge sends Appleton girl to White House

When Jennifer Ganser, a health coach for ThedaCare in Appleton, first read about the PBS Healthy Lunchtime Challenge on Epicurious, she knew right away that it was a good opportunity for her family.

“I love cooking and so I thought, ‘hey, we could probably do this together,’” said Jennifer.

The nationwide recipe contest encourages children to cook and eat healthy and culminating with a state dinner hosted by first lady Michelle Obama, with winners attending from each state and territory.

Jennifer’s 10-year-old daughter, Anna Ganser, jumped in right away, and the family started collaborating on recipe ideas.

“I just thought it would be neat to meet the first lady and go to the Capitol. I like roasted vegetables and cucumbers, so we started there and decided on the Mediterranean idea,” said Anna.

After choosing several finalists, chefs re-created each recipe in Washington for a panel of judges who rated each dish by taste, nutritional value and affordability. After weeks of waiting, the Gansers were able to celebrate.

“When heard the news, I came home and told (Anna) in person,” Jennifer said. “All of her sisters were home, and it was a big party for a while.” Continue reading PBS Healthy Lunchtime Challenge sends Appleton girl to White House

Attend a Live Taping of 30 Minute Music Hour

30 Minute Music Hour LogoTake off work the afternoon of Monday, July 13 and enjoy some live music at Wisconsin Public Television. Three bands will be joining us to record live sets for the new season of 30 Minute Music Hour, and tickets are totally free. Just send an email to 30mmhaudience@gmail.com to reserve your seats for one or all of the following shows.

FEUFOLLET – 1:15 p.m. concert/audience seated by 1 p.m.
It’d be easy to label this five-piece from Lafayette, La. as a Cajun band, but a deeper listen reveals experimentation with honky-tonk, rock, country and even a bit of pop. During this set, we may need to push back the chairs and make way for dancing. You can also check out Feufollet at La Fete de Marquette in Madison the weekend before their 30MMH show.

TRAPPER SCHOEPP – 2:30 p.m. concert/audience seated by 2:15 p.m.
Milwaukee’s Trapper Schoepp have toured hard the past year, sharing stages with big-name bands like The Jayhawks and the Old 97’s. Huffington Post called Schoepp a “master storyteller.” Add catchy alt-country rock to insightful lyrics and you have a recipe for musical longevity.

THE CACTUS BLOSSOMS – 4 p.m. concert/audience seated by 3:45 p.m.
The Cactus Blossoms are two brothers from the Twin Cities who are true country throwbacks. The duo’s vocal harmonies, which resemble The Everly Brothers, have garnered praise from Garrison Keillor, CMT and BBC Radio.

Meet This Year's WPT Auction Commemorative Artist

Ann Fischer Athas
Ann Fischer Athas

Art items created by artists from around the state will be available throughout Auction, May 27-31, including the work of Ann Fischer Athas, the 2015 Auction Commemorative Artist.

Ask Ann Fischer Athas to name her proudest artistic achievement and she won’t boast, even though her creations are remarkable. Instead she’ll cite the fact that she keeps producing. “Just when you think you’ve found something you like to do in printmaking, you find a million more things to explore,” she says.

Fischer Athas consistently turns her concepts into realities by producing one-of-a-kind prints often inspired by nature. Printmaking is a technical, step-intensive art form that has deep roots. Many printmaking techniques date back to the 1600s. The commemorative piece Fischer Athas has donated to Auction, titled “Winter on the Farm, February, 2015,” was created using the intaglio method, which is the exact opposite of a relief print. For this piece, the image was incised into the surface of the plate using acid, and the etched area held the ink prior to transfer.

Winter on the Farm, February, 2015

Like the origins of printmaking, Fischer Athas’ love of printmaking runs deep. She first experimented with printmaking while working on her B.A. at Knox College. After graduating with a degree in art, she worked as a graphic designer in marketing for years, until a move to Wisconsin brought printmaking back into her life.

After relocating, Fischer Athas heard about a printmaking class offered by UW-Extension and decided she wanted to try the medium again. So the then stay-at-home mom hired a babysitter for her daughters and headed back to the studio for the first time in years.

“I thought, ‘do it now or you’re never going to do it,’” she reflects. Looking back, she recognizes that decision as a pivotal moment in her life. She has now been making prints for more than 20 years.

“One of the things that’s interesting about the printmaking tradition is the collaboration between artists and printers,” she explains.

That rapport is showcased by the donated piece, which was created through collaboration between Fischer Athas and Master Printer Andrew Balkin, with Balkin serving as the printer for the edition.

To learn more about Fischer Athas’ prints, visit
www.athasprintstudio.com.

Be sure to join us for this year’s Auction, May 27-31 as we celebrate our 40th year of fantastic fun! Help support Wisconsin Public Television as you bid on an array of goods and services donated by businesses and individuals from around Wisconsin and beyond. For details, visit auction.wpt.org.