Hopefully, you know from watching our coverage of local government meetings that the Greenfield Public Schools Administrative Offices will finally be moving out of their insufficient Davis Street building, and into a renovated section of Greenfield Middle School, during the first week of October. At their meeting last week, Superintendent Harper encouraged the Greenfield School Committee to open Davis Street to the public before it is torn down, so that people can say goodbye. Many longtime area residents attended elementary school in that building and the superintendent mentioned that recent visitors to her office have been reminiscing with administrative staff. We would like to put together a virtual tour of the building, complete with oral histories from those who spent time there. If you attended Davis Street, or worked there, please email Karen@gctv.org or call our office at (413) 774-4288 to set up a time for us to record you sharing your memories. This way, the experience will be available to all, long after the building is gone.
Thanks again to everyone who helped us by filling out Greenfield's Cable Advisory Committee (CAC) Survey in July. All of the responses have been collected in a summary and you can read them on the town's website, here. It was interesting to note that several people mentioned that though we are recording all of our programs in HD, Comcast isn't broadcasting them that way. It was also nice to read all of the positive comments about us and to see that Greenfield residents are passionate and informed about how the system works. We'll let you know how the negotiation process is going after the next CAC meeting so keep checking back!
Things went really well yesterday and our staff and volunteers had a great time filming the parade! Anything would have been an improvement over last year, when we televised the festivities in the rain, but several factors contributed to the ease and enjoyment of this production.
First, we really have to thank The Arts Block, for letting us use their power so that we didn't have to run hundreds of feet of cable, and our wonderful group of unpaid cast and crew members, without whom we couldn't have done what we did: Parade Hosts Russ Brown & Tom Dillon, Switcher Tom LaChance, Camera Operators Shawn Cromack, Greg Greuling, & Sam Pyfrom, and Photographer Heather Abbott.
Sam had an especially good time, as many of the participants know him and were mugging for his camera. People handing out candy were also really keen to share with him, including vehicle drivers:
Heather's favorite part was one of the Magic Wings staff releasing live butterflies as he walked along. Unfortunately, he was out of the insects by the time he got to her so she couldn't get a picture. He did, however, release one right in front of Sam so keep an eye out when you watch our full parade video to see if we captured the moment. We'll be rebroadcasting it today at 4PM and tomorrow at 2PM on Cable Channel 15 and we'll have it, and our pictures from the event, online later today.
Finally, though we were unable to use the town's GreenLight wireless network to transmit the parade signal as we'd hoped, we were able to use it during the parade to provide pictures and updates on our Facebook page and Twitter feed. It worked beautifully and made our New Media Producer as happy as Shawn looks in this picture:
In order to bring you a better Franklin County Fair Parade Live Broadcast next Thursday, and to save wear and tear on our staff, we are collaborating with the town and The Arts Block. We want to publicly express our gratitude to both entities as their contributions should save us a lot of time and stress during our setup process.
The Town of Greenfield's new municipal internet service provider (ISP) is working with us to see if we can stream the fair parade, and future live broadcasts from other locations in town, through their GreenLight network. The biggest positive impact this would have is not having to run hundreds of feet of cable from our switcher to a cable drop, which in turn means no chance of damaged cables or cords being disconnected. The Arts Block is helping out in a similar manner by allowing us to use their power instead of having to connect to a town supply further down the street.
We'll let you know, in a future blog post, how all of this all works out so stay tuned!
In just one week you’ll be able to visit with artists selected to participate in this year’s Greenfield Local Cultural Council (GLCC) juried art show, enjoy their work, and indulge in some light refreshments. As we kick off hosting the Changing exhibit, which will hang on the walls of our first floor space through the end of December, you can find out what inspired these creatives and how they put together their pieces. In total, nine artists were accepted into the show with eleven works in the painting, pencil drawing, mixed media, and digital print mediums. Some interpreted change literally, with works showing the passage of seasons, others want the audience to think about themes of climate change, technology, evolution, and perception. Come experience it all and, as a bonus, find out how you might benefit from the services of the GLCC as they open their new grant cycle. Details about the event can be found here.
Here is some new content to keep an eye out for on Cable Channel 15, gctv.org, and wmcb.net:
Valley Talent Showcase August 2016 Edition---Music by Claire Dacey, No Eyed Dog, The Tinkers, Opel, Humble Digs, and Malado.
A panel on social and racial justice in agriculture from this year's Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) summer conference. To whet your appetite, watch our interview with one of the presenters, Leah Penniman.
Two conversations with New Salem Planning Board Member Sarah Kohler, about forest protection, that were part of The Singing Wilderness & Eco Beat Hour radio show.
A new episode of Healthbeat from Baystate Franklin Medical Center, for September, focusing on veins and sports medicine.
We don’t have too much to say this week, as we are busy getting ready for all of the events we’ll be covering during the next few months. Massachusetts Primary Elections are less than one month away and they will take place on the same day as this year’s Franklin County Fair Parade. Before that, we’ll film the MA Department of Public Utilities (DPU) hearing on Berkshire Gas’ supply plan on the 30th of this month. If you attend the Franklin County Fair’s Got Talent competition, you’ll see us there, as well as at the Greenfield Rag Shag parade and Greenfield High School versus Turners Falls High School Thanksgiving Day Football Game. Of course, we’ll also bring you all of Greenfield’s results from the state and presidential elections in November. We realize it may be hard to think about the fall when it’s so hot out but the more preparations we make now, the better our coverage will be for you to watch when the time comes. That’s it for this week, we need to go organize stuff for the Greenfield Local Cultural Council’s 4th annual juried art exhibition that will be on display here from September through December!
We were home to Local Bias Producer Drew Hutchison's second Summer 2016 Film Camp this week and it was a lot of fun to watch him help three teenagers make a short horror movie. They used our studio and various locations around town, with Drew teaching them about all aspects of production along the way.
Here he is in our studio explaining camera shots to one of the campers:
The other two the campers as talkshow host and guest:
In the control room and in charge of the production:
The boys even edited the film themselves:
They learned a lot and it was evident that they had a great time. Keep an eye out for their work on Cable Channel 15 in the coming weeks.
“Overwhelming support for GCTV” was a phrase used multiple times at last night’s Greenfield Cable Advisory Committee (CAC) meeting so we want to give a big thank you to everyone who filled out the survey and/or sent in positive comments about us. Not only does it make us feel really good to hear how valued what we do for the community is but, since our funding level is determined through this process, all of your feedback will help us to grow and continue providing many ways for local people to make their voices heard. If you want to watch last night’s meeting for yourself, we’ll be putting it online later this afternoon.
On another note, if you watch ABC’s 20/20 tonight, you might see some footage that originally aired on our channel. A couple of years ago, the New England Learning Center for Women in Transition (NELCWIT) held a fundraiser to help Greenfield resident Mary Rose attend the out of state trial of the man accused of killing her daughter. Unity in the Pioneer Valley Church Service producer Amanda Smith was on hand to film that event and, early this week, we received an email from 20/20 asking for permission to use some of her video. We connected them with Ms. Smith and supplied a copy of the film for them to use.
If you are a regular website visitor, or follow us on social media, you may already know that Greenfield is renegotiating its cable service contract with Comcast. What you may not know is that the amount of money Comcast has to set aside for us over the next ten years, from revenues they generate in town, is determined during this process.
We work very hard to train anyone who comes into our facility wanting to make their voice heard by producing a television show, shine a spotlight on local government by airing meetings live on TV and online, expand the public's access to technology, and maintain an archive of interesting, entertaining, and informative programming. Because we have plans to upgrade our facilities, increase the amount of government meetings we cover, update our website, expand our 360 degree video offerings, and make a larger variety of content available, we've asked for an increase in our funding and need to demonstrate public support for it.
If you appreciate all that we do to connect our community, please fill out the Greenfield Cable Advisory Committee's (CAC) short survey here (it really only takes a couple of minutes!) or email them directly. Just a sentence or two along the lines of "GCTV is great! Fund them." is all it takes and the more positive comments that are registered, the more money we should receive.
The deadline for providing feedback to the CAC is next Thursday, July 28th. When you are commenting, please limit your responses to Comcast's TV service only, as internet and phone aren't part of this contract. It is fine to praise our online presence and streamed offerings, however, because they are part of what GCTV provides. Also, please note that there is actually only one question on the survey that is about us, the last one, but there is a comment box after it where you can leave your glowing review of what we provide to the community. Thank you so much for supporting your local television station!