WPT's "In Wisconsin" Reports on Citizens Being Trained to Spot Severe Weather

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In_Wis.924.doc

April 28, 2011

For More Information:
Lynn Brockmeyer, WPT publicist, 608-263-3364, lynn.brockmeyer@wpt.org
Joel Waldinger, series producer, 608-890-2840, joel.waldinger@wpt.org

The next episode of In Wisconsin on Wisconsin Public Television (WPT) reports on how average citizens are being trained to watch the sky for tornadoes, an experiment in the Madison area that will provide fresh fruit free for the picking in some parks and neighborhoods, and the negative impact climate change could have on shipping across the Great Lakes region.

The newsmagazine airs 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 5 on WPT and is available in high definition. The program also will air at 11:30 a.m. Sunday, May 8 on Milwaukee’s MPTV and on WDSE-TV in Duluth at 4 p.m. Sunday, May 8.

Spring is the beginning of tornado season in Wisconsin and every year the National Weather Service issues tornado alerts based on computer models and radar. Weather spotters are the next line of defense to help determine if a "watch" becomes a "warning." In Wisconsin Reporter Adam Schrager discovers how weather spotters are getting help from average citizens like a dentist in Lomira whose severe weather photos are now the gold standard for training others.

This growing season marks the beginning of a ground-breaking experiment in Wisconsin —fresh sweet fruit will be free for the picking — in public places like city parks and along boulevards. Madison’s Wingra Park and Middleton's Bock Community Garden have planted fruit trees, with the help of volunteers, and other neighborhoods are eager to follow their lead. Liz Koerner reports.

In Wisconsin explores the history of Door County’s Rock Island with the help of Chester Thordarson an inventor, Icelandic native and amateur botanist who turned his private holdings on the island into a retreat for the rich and famous. Today it is Rock Island State Park where all travel is on foot.

The St. Lawrence Seaway is a major shipping route linking the Great Lakes to the Atlantic and the rest of the world. It supports 30,000 jobs and $3 billion of business every year. With Lake Michigan water levels projected to drop 1 to 2 feet during the next century, how will this major thoroughfare be affected by climate change? As part of In Wisconsin’s Quest environmental reporting project, Finn Ryan, video producer with the Educational Communications Board, teams up with veteran Milwaukee shipping pilot Randy Hayes.

This program's video postcard features Smith Rapids Covered Bridge in Price County.

To learn more about what is coming up on the series, visit the In Wisconsin website at wpt.org/inwisconsin where the “Producer’s Journal” blog offers behind-the-scenes insights and information about reports currently in production.

Funding for In Wisconsin is provided, in part, by Alliant Energy, and Animal Dentistry and Oral Surgery Specialists LLC of Milwaukee, Oshkosh and Minneapolis.

WPT is a service of the Educational Communications Board and University of Wisconsin-Extension.

Wisconsin Public Television is a place to grow through learning on WHA-TV, Madison; WPNE-TV, Green Bay; WHRM-TV, Wausau; WLEF-TV, Park Falls; WHLA-TV, La Crosse; and WHWC-TV, Menomonie-Eau Claire.

 
DESCRIPTION: IN WISCONSIN #924
In Wisconsin reports on how average citizens are being trained to watch the sky for severe weather, an experiment in the Madison area that will provide fresh fruit free for the picking in some parks and neighborhoods, and the negative impact climate change could have on the Great Lakes.