Thinking Inside the Box

Sights of Summer: Television Worth Watching on MPTV

by Ellis Bromberg, General Manager of MPTV

Hi, Ellis Bromberg with more "Thinking Inside the Box" on

For decades, a Sunday in mid-July in Milwaukee has meant the staging of the Great Circus Parade, the third largest parade in the country after the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and the Rose Parade. Milwaukee Public Television has been the station of record for the Circus Parade for most of those years, broadcasting it not only locally but nationally as well. A few years ago, I had relatives in New York and California who watched the MPTV production of the Circus Parade on their local PBS stations.

We know there is an interest in reviving the parade, but you're not going to see it this year. That is, unless, you tune in Channel 10.1, Sunday afternoon, July 17, at 1 o'clock. If there were a Circus Parade in Milwaukee this year, that's the exact day and hour you would have been enjoying it on the parade route. Well, this year, have the circus peanuts and popcorn ready in your living room when we re-broadcast THE 2009 GREAT CIRCUS PARADE, hosted by Jim Peck, John McGivern, and Sandy Maxx.

It's just one of a number of summertime programs on MPTV that focus on the things we do and enjoy in Wisconsin.

In July, MPTV offers several specials that celebrate our national and regional parks, including our award-winning NATIONAL PARKS: WISCONSIN. Hosts Dan Small and Patty Loew take us on visits to our state's beautiful Ice Age National Scenic Trail, the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway, the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, and the North Country National Scenic Trail. You can see it Saturday night, July 30, at 9 o'clock on Channel 36.1.

This year marks the 125th birthday of the University of Wisconsin's Varsity Band, and the legendary Mike Leckrone leads the Badger musicians in an evening of Rose Bowl memories, highlights from the musical "Evita," and some great Motown sounds. It's THE UW VARSITY BAND CONCERT 2011: RETURN TO THE ROSES, and it premieres Sunday night, July 3, at 9:30 on Channel 10.1.

Each year, MPTV also conducts a competition for our area's young writers and illustrators in grades K-through-3, and the winning entries are turned into wonderfully illustrated short stories you may have seen -- we show them between our children's programs. And this year, from 544 entries, we've combined the winning 20 into a delightful program the whole family will enjoy with school out. It's the PBS KIDS GO! WRITERS CONTEST WINNERS, premiering Friday afternoon, July 1, at 5 o'clock on Channel 10.1.

Finally, MPTV's year-long Finding Work Initiative continues with the series JOBS, hosted by Mark Siegrist and Denise Callaway. It features inspiring personal stories about how local folks are coping with the unemployment crisis. And it returns to the primetime Channel 10.1 schedule Wednesdays nights at 9 beginning July 27. And please check out the companion website which is filled with helpful tips and links to local resources.

So MPTV is here every day to bring the events we celebrate and the issues we discuss in Wisconsin right into your own living room. Please join us this summer for some TV worth watching!

And I'll be back soon with more "Thinking Inside the Box."