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25 Favorite Wisconsin Programs of 2016

As the year comes to a close, we were curious to see which programs with local ties connected with Wisconsin Public Television viewers the most over the past 12 months.

wl_orange_crush001We peeked at website data and took note of all the comments you made by email and phone to compile a list of locally produced programming that warmed your heart, inspired you to action, educated you, and made you feel closer to your Wisconsin family.

As always, thanks for tuning in – today, and all year long.

Did we miss your favorite show in this list? Let us know in the comments section below.
Continue reading 25 Favorite Wisconsin Programs of 2016

2016 Holiday Program Schedule

Winter is in the air… and on the air, on Wisconsin Public Television. As we prepare for the first snowfall – and the much-anticipated premiere of Wisconsin Winter From the Air – we wanted to share the special holiday-themed programs coming up on WPT. From Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, look to WPT for classic favorites and fresh holiday finds.

Here is a complete list of every holiday program on WPT this season:

Continue reading 2016 Holiday Program Schedule

“Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin” Showcases Tradition, Innovation and Inspiration

Update! Watch Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin online here.

Quilting is more than just fabric and thread. It is a journey filled with thoughtfulness and emotion. Join host Nancy Zieman to meet the artists behind the quilts in the brand-new television special Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin, premiering 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 29 on Wisconsin Public Television.

Preview the special in this exclusive sneak peek:

Meet contemporary quilters who take traditional quilting to new levels, innovative quilters who use unconventional techniques, and inspirational quilters who explore the richness of life and its many lessons through fabric.

Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin introduces viewers to quilters and quilts from around Wisconsin, including work by Diane Gaudynski, Betty Ekern Suiter, Bruce Seeds, Natalie Sewell and more. Learn the source of their inspiration, tour their workspaces and marvel at the intricacies of their masterpieces. Plus, view dozens of quilts crafted by quilters from across the state.

Each quilter has unique reasons for quilting. Learn how all quilters are united by a passion for tradition, innovation and inspiration when Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin premieres on WPT.

Q&A: Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin

“Quilting is so much more than making a bed quilt to keep someone warm,” says Nancy Zieman. The longtime host of Sewing With Nancy is excited to present the new Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin special, premiering Tuesday, Nov. 29. at 7 p.m.

Read on to see why and how this unique program came to be.

Continue reading Q&A: Treasured Quilts of Wisconsin

Meet the Quilt Expo Quilters

Quilt Expo 2016 has concluded, but the inspiration will stick with us all year long!  

We were thrilled to meet so many of the Quilt Contest exhibitors in person at Quilt Expo and have the opportunity to view the incredible details of hundreds of quilts in the Quilt Exhibit. From hand-quilted future heirlooms to machine-quilted pictorial masterpieces, the creativity behind these works astounded everyone who attended.  

Explore Quilt Expo 2016 online Continue reading Meet the Quilt Expo Quilters

Behind the Scenes: Quilt Expo 2016

Quilt Expo 2016 is just around the corner, Sept. 8-10 at the Exhibition Hall at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wisconsin. In advance of the three-day expo, Wisconsin Public Television spent the day with Nancy Zieman to find out what goes into making Quilt Expo the ultimate quilting adventure. From storing contest quilts to prepping samples to making media appearances, preparing for Quilt Expo is a year-round production.

Escape, Create and Celebrate at Quilt Expo. Purchase discounted advance tickets at QuiltExpo.com through Sept. 5. Admission tickets and registration for remaining class openings will be available on-site during Quilt Expo.

A New Season of “Sewing With Nancy”

September is an exciting time at Wisconsin Public Television! A new season of Sewing With Nancy premieres 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 24 on WPT, and the three-day Quilt Expo, co-presented by WPT and Nancy Zieman, takes place Sept. 8-10.

The good news is that you don’t have to wait until September to enjoy Sewing With Nancy or start planning your Quilt Expo adventure. The first episodes from the 34th season of Sewing With Nancy are now available on wpt.org. Click here to watch Best Sweatshirt Makeovers, Favorite Scarves to Sew and more (just in time to get cozy for fall).

Planning ahead for Quilt Expo is almost as much fun as attending … almost. On her blog, Nancy talks about what she’s most looking forward to at this year’s expo — from must-see lectures to shopping for the latest notions to the Kids Quilt Challenge and everything in between. As Nancy says “It’s a big deal!”

There’s another benefit of planning for Quilt Expo in advance: Discounted prices are available for Quilt Expo advance tickets and class registration purchased through Sept. 5.

Watch the premiere episode of Sewing With Nancy below, and mark your calendars to join Nancy at the 2016 Quilt Expo.

Meet Nancy Zieman & Learn New Techniques at Quilt Expo

Registration for Quilt Expo 2016 is officially open! Every year, guests flock to Quilt Expo to Escape, Create and Celebrate. The three-day event, presented by Wisconsin Public Television with Nancy Zieman, invites all quilt lovers to learn, laugh and draw inspiration from each other.

Quilt Expo | Sept. 8-10, 2016
Alliant Energy Center in Madison
Register early and save:
Register here.

Nancy Zieman, beloved host of WPT’s own Sewing With Nancy, which has been on the air since 1982, will appear at the Wisconsin Public Television booth to meet with all Quilt Expo attendees!

Don’t miss Quilt Expo’s 10-category quilt contest exhibit, showcasing the incredible talents of quilters from across the country. In addition, attendees can view this year’s brand-new Black & White Plus One Challenge, which spotlights unique ways of creating fabric masterpieces using only three colors.

Nearly 200 vendors at the extensive vendor mall will offer the latest machines, kits, fabrics, threads, notions and more. Additional highlights include a raffle for fantastic quilt-related prizes, as well as a community service project — Quilt to Give, led by Nancy Zieman — which invites attendees to donate their materials and skills to create bed-size quilts for those in need.

Visit quiltexpo.com for full details and to register for lectures, workshops and evening events! We hope to see you this fall.

Streaming Favorites for March

A lot of my favorite national dramas from PBS recently wrapped up, including Downton Abbey (let’s all share a moment of silence), and Mercy Street. In my search for great streaming content, I decided to bring it back home and focus on some of our locally-produced shows. So much of the quality content we broadcast at WPT is also available to watch online, so if you missed an episode – or if you’re a spoiled viewer like me, and only watch shows on-demand – check out some of our great, locally produced shows online.

Wisconsin Foodie
Kyle Cherek goes all over the state in a quest to discover the hidden gems of Wisconsin’s culinary scene. From cheese makers to beer distillers, Cherek shows us why it’s great to be a foodie in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Life
When you feel like you’re in a rut, Wisconsin Life can show you a new perspective and share some of the incredible, adventurous things going on across the state. This show highlights how diverse, creative and fun Wisconsinites truly are!

Continue reading Streaming Favorites for March

Garden Expo: Dan Tyler’s Search for Abundance

“This is a great way to spend a cold February day. It has us all looking forward. Ken Burns called it ‘the fond expectancy of spring.’” – Dan Tyler, Garden Expo Volunteer and Speaker

BackyardBlueberries

Each year, the Garden Expo brings thousands of people in from the cold to share their love of gardening. We wouldn’t be able to organize this event without the help of dedicated volunteers, folks who are passionate about their experiences and willing to share with others.

I sat down with Dan Tyler, an avid gardener and Madison resident, to talk about his personal experiences and his presentation on maintaining small-scale eco-yards.

DanTylerWhat inspired you to start presenting at Garden Expo?
I’ve come to the Garden Expo for years. I enjoy getting a lot of ideas and sometimes pick up a little equipment, but I especially love the opportunity to be on the stage.

I’m a volunteer; I’m not sponsored by anyone or selling any product, but it’s important to me to tell my story. I’m a younger homeowner, and I think it’s part of the American dream to own some land of your own. I always looked forward to that, and it became an enjoyable journey from a quarter-acre of lawn to a quarter-acre of abundance.

You use the word abundance a lot; can you talk more about that idea?
The notion of abundance – and I’m not talking about higher production rate – is the notion that the earth gives so much when you tend to its ecosystem, even on a small scale. Even a small yard can do a lot for you.

A lot of people today, we don’t have a lot of want in our life. We have so much going for us. Some people discover abundance out of need, but the more I study or contemplate it, I see that it’s about spending time on projects that are meaningful. I’m here at Garden Expo because I like to share that with people. Continue reading Garden Expo: Dan Tyler’s Search for Abundance