Cable Access TV for Greenfield Massachusetts & Franklin County
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Wednesday, December 31 1969

Blog

Feb 17 2017 - 2:50pm

This week, our staff was deeply saddened to learn that longtime volunteer and producer Shawn Cromack had passed away on Sunday at the age of 41. Shawn was a great guy who loved GCTV and wanted to do everything he could to support our station. There was a time, years ago, when we didn’t have many people to help us with shoots but Shawn could be counted on to show up for almost every one we did. He was such a permanent fixture at Greenfield government meetings, each of which tended to be 3-5 hours long during that period, that our new media producer finally had to encourage him to stay home sometimes because we didn’t want him to burn out.

Shawn really got that volunteering is a great way to learn how to use our equipment, frame shots, and gain general TV experience. He loved all kinds of metal music, and was passionate about increasing exposure for local bands, so he used his skills to produce a program called The Pit, which featured recordings of live performances.

A few years ago, Shawn began bringing his partner, Heather, along when he was editing his shows on our computers, so our staff got to know her as well. She shared that she’s a photographer and offered to help in that capacity whenever Shawn was operating a video camera for us during events like the Franklin County Fair Parade and the Greenfield Rag Shag. Our hearts go out to her and the rest of Shawn’s friends and family during this difficult time. We’ll miss Shawn’s dark sense of humor but we can’t say goodbye. Shawn hated hearing that word at the end of phone conversations so we’ll use his preferred term and instead say, “Later" to our buddy.

Feb 10 2017 - 3:23pm

Thankfully, yesterday's winter storm didn't slow us down too much and, though we had to close early, a lot was accomplished by the two staff members who were able to walk into the office.  No shoots had been scheduled in our studio on Thursday and our executive director made sure that rebroadcasts aired on WMCB 107.9-lp FM, in place of the live shows that normally occur.  It was a good day to catch up on things, since it was so quiet, and we hope everyone reading this was able to enjoy a nice day at home, even if much of it was spent shoveling.

On another note, our new media producer was disheartened last Saturday, when she went to show a friend the beautiful ice sculpture by Thomas Matsuda (featured in last week's blog post) and discovered that it had been smashed.  While she stood on the sidewalk in shock, she ended up comforting another woman, who was upset about the vandalism, by informing her that we had pictures of some of the pieces on our website.  The Greenfield Recreation Department and the ice carvers work very hard each year, to bring smiles to the faces of residents and Winter Carnival attendees, and we hope that the people responsible for the damage are brought to justice.  We also want to give a shout out to the good samaritans, including folks from Greenfield Garden Cinemas, who put some of the art back together.  Way to go!

Feb 3 2017 - 2:04pm

Thanks to the Greenfield Recreation Department, there will be lots to do in town this weekend.  We think Winter Carnival is a terrific way to beat the blues this time of year and hope you will take full advantage the opportunities to skate, sled, enjoy a fireworks display, and so much more.  We've already been out looking at the ice carvings and talking with the artists who are creating them.  You can see our pictures here and we'll have video on our homepage this evening.  Then, after you check out our online coverage, don't forget to come down to Main Street at 6PM tonight to enjoy the 3rd Annual Parade of Lights in person.  Happy Winter!

 

Jan 27 2017 - 11:42am

Last month, our board realized that it has been several years since the active GCTV community gathered to network and celebrate our collective accomplishments.  To that end, producers, volunteers, and WMCB DJs have been invited to socialize and enjoy some food and drink in our lobby on Tuesday, January 31st, at 6:30PM, following our annual board meeting.

This event is a great chance for us to show our new space and updated technology to folks who haven't been here for a while, or who only use one part of our facilities.  It's also a terrific time for ideas to form and collaborations to be discussed between people who might not meet otherwise.  If you received our email invitation and haven't RSVP'd to scott@gctv.org yet, please do.  We would love to see you.  If you didn't get an invite, but you have a project you that you need some help with, shoot Scott an email and let him know so that you can be included.  The more, the merrier!

Jan 20 2017 - 12:31pm

Following up on last week's post, we are working hard to bring you audio and video of events taking place today and tomorrow, both here and in Washington, D.C.  Unfortunately, there seems to have been some confusion between the folks at the show Democracy Now! and their network, FreeSpeech TV, so we were informed, yesterday, that there would be no broadcast from 8AM to 3PM today.  Our executive director scrambled to get clarity, since he'd received an email the day before confirming the coverage, but didn't get a response until this morning.

Because he had cleared our schedule for the inauguration special, he then had to reprogram our server so that all of our regularly scheduled shows would air instead.  Then, around noon today, our staff discovered that Democracy Now! is streaming the celebration and commentary live on their website.  If you are interested in watching this live feed, please go to https://www.democracynow.org/ before 3PM.  As far as we know, the Women's March on Washington programming will still air, from 10AM to 3PM tomorrow, on Cable Channel 15, and we are still planning on streaming today's local Counter Inaugural Rally live on our Facebook page from 4PM to 6PM.  Tune in and stay informed!

Jan 13 2017 - 1:54pm

No matter how you feel about the results of November's election, the inauguration of our next President of the United States, and reaction to that celebration, is big news.  As your community television station, we're going to work hard to keep you informed about these national events from a local perspective.

Many of you are already fans of Democracy Now! so be sure to tune in to Cable Channel 15 next Friday, January 20th, from 8AM to 3PM, for complete coverage of Inauguration 2017, courtesy of FreeSpeech TV, and again on Saturday, January 21st, from 10AM to 3PM, for their broadcast of the Women's March on Washington.  Meanwhile, we'll have cameras at the protest planned for 4PM to 6PM on the Greenfield Town Common on the 20th.  Not only will we be recording that for later broadcast online and on TV but we plan to stream the entire event live on Facebook.  In addition, if you are unable to stand on the town common that day, and don't have internet access at home, you are welcome to watch the proceedings in our lobby.

Finally, we want you to know that we are sending a camera down to Washington, with a woman participating in the march on the 21st, and we anticipate airing her footage, and getting her take on that event, near the end of the month.

Jan 6 2017 - 1:26pm

Whew! What a week for filming government meetings and other events downtown.  After using all day Tuesday to catch up from our wonderful week off, our executive director headed over to the Greenfield Planning Office to film the town council's reorganization meeting.  Since councilors weren't actually sure that they needed to hold this meeting, charter changes made it a bit unclear and traditionally officers have served for two years or until the next town election, there were no surprises as Bricket Allis, Isaac Mass, and Rudy Renaud were re-elected to their positions.

On Wednesday night, after another busy day at our offices, the Greenfield School Committee convened their organizational meeting in our studio.  Our new media producer made sure it broadcast live and posted the results (Mayor Martin as chairperson, Adrienne Nunez vice chair, and Don Alexander as secretary) on our social media feeds around 7:30PM.  Meanwhile, one of our volunteers was across the street filming the Greenfield Public Library's First Wednesday Speaker Series, featuring Crystal Mengele and members of the Amherst Area Amateur Astronomy Association.  The images they shared were amazing and you'll get to see them when we post the video on our website on Monday.

Continuing with our theme of recording local government meetings, GCTV's news director attended last night's 3 hour long Greenfield Town Council Economic Development Committee (EDC) and Greenfield Planning Board Joint Public Hearing continuation about amending a Greenfield Zoning Ordinance as it relates to a Corridor Overlay District.  If you don't know what that's all about, or why it's important, stay tuned.  We'll bring you the full video later today and you can watch for yourself as many residents object to allowing gas stations and restaurants with drive-thru service to be built on the French King Highway.

One other thing we did this week was take down the Greenfield Local Cultural Council (GLCC) art exhibit that's been enriching our workspace for the last few months and prep our walls for the next guest artist.  So, don't forget to stop by our lobby between 6PM and 8PM tonight to check out the new paintings, kibbitz with artist Alice Thomas, and eat some yummy snacks!

Dec 23 2016 - 7:59am

We hope everyone enjoys a wonderful holiday season with family and friends.  We will definitely be doing that while we are closed from December 26th through January 2nd, so there will be no blog post next week, but we will hit the ground running on January 3, 2017.  That week will see us recording a town council meeting, a school committee meeting, and the Greenfield Public Library's First Wednesday Speaker in addition to our regular duties and annual turnover chores.  It will be exciting and we can hardly wait.  See you next year!

Dec 16 2016 - 1:07pm

At 5:05PM on Wednesday, just as our new media producer was getting ready to take her break and our executive director was headed upstairs to our studio to set up a projector for the Greenfield School Committee Meeting, we discovered that the elevator in our building wasn’t working properly. Changing plans, our new media producer continued preparations for the meeting while our executive director investigated the problem. Shortly, he realized there was no quick fix and a repairperson was called. Unfortunately, it would take the repairperson an hour to get here and people would begin to arrive for the school committee meeting at 6PM.

It was all hands on deck as calls were made to town officials, volunteers were emailed, and our staff provided a smaller setup, with only one camera and no capability to broadcast live, so that the meeting could take place in our first floor lobby. A big thank you, by the way, goes out to the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce/Greenfield Business Association for loaning us some really nice chairs! In addition, we put a TV monitor in the main hallway for any audience overflow and posted updates about what the school committee was doing approximately every 10 or 15 minutes during the meeting, instead of our usual every half-hour schedule.

The elevator was successfully repaired around 8:30PM but we were very lucky. The part that failed was a small electromagnet from the 1930’s, not the most common piece, and the repairperson just happened to have a replacement with him. Of course, our staff thought the electromagnet was pretty cool so we’re sharing a picture of it with you. Take a look:  (That's a penny in the bottom left corner, for size comparison.)

 

Dec 9 2016 - 3:46pm

Mark your calendars now!  For the first time in many years, we will be closed for the entire week between the Christmas and New Year's holidays.  That means our offices and studios will be closed Monday, December 26, 2016, through Monday, January 2, 2017.  In addition, there will be no GCTV Board of Directors Meeting in December or Greenfield High School Music Department Holiday Concert.  Instead, the GHS Music Department has moved their winter showcase to January 12, 2017 and our board would like you to "save the date" for an open house event we are planning to coincide with our January 31st Annual Meeting.  In the meantime, we hope everyone has a wonderful, stress-free, season.

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