Food & Travel

Q&A: John McGivern

As the new year begins, John McGivern is on the road once more, visiting cities across Wisconsin to uncover unique locations in each neighborhood – and meeting the interesting people who make our state’s communities thrive.

We caught up with the host to talk about Around the Corner With John McGivern ahead of the show’s seventh season premiere 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 18 on Wisconsin Public Television.

You can catch up with McGivern, too, in a series of free community screenings premiering new episodes in the communities they profile!

  • Appleton: 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 17
    Fox Cities Exhibition Center
  • Middleton: 7 p.m. Monday, Jan. 22
    Performing Arts Center, Middleton High School
  • Viroqua: 6 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 31
    Historic Temple Theatre

Check in for more details posted soon at

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Introducing… Midday Me Time!

Weekday afternoons aren’t just for kids anymore!

In September, the flagship channel of Wisconsin Public Television introduced something new. Now viewers who tune in between 1 and 3 p.m. from Monday-Friday can settle in for a relaxing treat with the new Midday Me Time block.

Mary Berry takes a taste on the Great British Baking ShowSo indulge yourself! Whether you’re taking a break from hard work or just enjoying some time to yourself, Midday Me Time is the perfect way to catch up on classic PBS favorites – or discover new ones featuring the thoughtful, intriguing stories you love.

Read on for a preview of what’s coming up!

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North to Alaska! With Inga Witscher, Host of Around the Farm Table

For years, Wisconsin Public Television has partnered with Holiday Vacations to provide unique travel opportunities around the world. Viewers join experienced guides and enthusiastic WPT personalities to visit many sites they may have experienced for the first time through a program on PBS.

Inga Witscher, host of Around the Farm Table, recently traveled to Alaska with one of these groups. Read on for her reflections on travel, television and the world we share.

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More to Savor: Around the Farm Table is back!

A Note From Inga…Inga Witscher, host of Around the Farm Table

It’s officially fall – which means it’s time for another great season! Rick, the producer, director, idea guy and – most importantly – my dad, joined me over the last few months as we had a blast touring the state in search of new farms and unique opportunities.

Read more to find out where we’re headed this season on Around the Farm Table – and join us for our new episodes beginning Thursday, Oct. 5 at 7:30 p.m.!

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The Final Recap: The Great Wisconsin Baking Challenge

In the beginning, there were 12. Now, only Andrew, Candice and Jane remain. The Final marks the end of an era in more ways than one, as the iconic show announced that its format will change drastically next season.

But, for now, let’s bask in the glow – or the dough – of The Great British Baking Show we all know so well. The Final put the spotlight on the three remaining bakers, as Mel, Sue, Mary and yes, even Paul, stepped aside for a minute to let the bakers do their magic.

And unsurprisingly, our Great Wisconsin Baking Challenge bakers amazed us till the very end, tackling the most challenging of The Final challenges, and not backing away from incorporating hard-to-find local ingredients (we asked our bakers to do their best to incorporate three local ingredients in The Final).

We cannot say it enough: You are all incredible.

So, it’s that time again: Let’s recap the happenings in the tent and in our bakers’ kitchens. If you haven’t seen The Final yet, here’s your spoiler alert!

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Pie Week Recap: The Great Wisconsin Baking Challenge

It’s the semi finals, and there’s plenty of drama and plenty of bakes. But only four bakers remain!

We broke from convention this time, transforming the week’s challenge from patisserie to pie.  Everyone loves pie — and we couldn’t bear the thought of going all summer without baking a whole bunch of pies. But don’t think we forgot about our beloved Great British Baking Show friends: We did incorporate some inspiration from this week’s episode since pie crust is a type of patisserie.

Let’s showcase the efforts of our local bakers and recap this week’s episode of The Great British Baking Show. If you haven’t seen this episode yet, here’s your spoiler warning!

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Wisconsin Week Recap: The Great Wisconsin Baking Challenge

And we’re back! After a three-week hiatus to allow for baking vacations and the Wisconsin Public Television summer fund drive (we welcome your support and donations anytime!), our Wisconsin Week challenge has finally concluded.

Many of our local bakers really upped their game for Week 8, with impressive presentations and ambitious blends of local ingredients. The Great Wisconsin Baking Challenge deviated slightly from the goals of Episode 8, which were to embrace the era of Henry VIII by baking creations to please the upper class at a fancy Tudor banquet. Rather, we wanted to see bakers bake for regular Wisconsin folk, tapping local farms, businesses and backyard gardens — and sourcing inspiration from our great state itself.

But don’t worry. You can find references to Game of Thrones in both.

GBBS Tudor-Week

It’s time to showcase the efforts of our local bakers and recap this week’s episode of The Great British Baking Show. Spoiler warning!

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Week 6 Botanical Recap: The Great Wisconsin Baking Challenge

Seven contestants on The Great British Baking Show took on three very different challenges inspired by nature. All tested technique, creativity and patience. One person made quite the rebound to land Star Baker, despite magnificent creations by the more consistent bakers.

The Great British Baking Show S4E6

Our local bakers took on the botanical challenge with enthusiasm, tapping their gardens, markets, CSAs, farmers markets and friends for fresh ingredients. And, we were pleased to see the Wisconsin state tree and flower be honored in their creations.

Here’s our recap of both the show and all the submissions we received this week in The Great Wisconsin Baking Challenge. Read to the bottom to find out who our local featured bakers are for Week 6!

And as always, here’s our spoiler alert!

Continue reading Week 6 Botanical Recap: The Great Wisconsin Baking Challenge

This Wisconsin Native Living in Alaska Wants WPT Viewers to Watch Wild Alaska Live!

Meet Lewis Pagel, an Edgerton, Wisconsin native, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh alum and a die-hard Green Bay Packers fan who moved to the Arctic town of Kotzebue, Alaska 10 years ago. We couldn’t think of anyone better to tell us why we should watch the three-part  Wild Alaska Live starting this Sunday night at 7 on Wisconsin Public Television to learn about the natural beauty and wonders of America’s last frontier! We’ll be watching, Lew!
Watch a trailer below for the three-part series, hosted by the Kratt brothers, that will continue Wednesday, July 26 and Sunday, July 30.