D id you ever wonder how Chattanooga, a place that Walter Cronkite described in 1989 as “the dirtiest city in America,” could turn around and become a city known for beautiful green spaces and sustainability? Do you know about the farmers’ market where you can buy fresh produce, sip wine, and enjoy live entertainment all at the same time? Are you curious about the business and fine art of making Tennessee whiskey, bourbon, and moonshine?
These are the stories of “Live Green Tennessee,” a half-hour show dedicated to exploring our rich agricultural heritage and local green wisdom with a focus on sustainability. As the announcer says in the introduction to the show, it is about “connecting the grower to the buyer, the country to the city, and smart shopping with a healthy lifestyle.”
Host Melinda Keifer takes us through seven- to ten-minute fun and educational segments that tell the stories of farmers, gardeners, small businesses, companies, cities, towns, and individual Tennesseans, all of whom are making a positive impact on their health, the environment, and their wallets by consciously living green.
Produced by WCTE-TV/PBS in Cookeville, “Live Green Tennessee” includes stories from across the state in collaboration with four other PBS stations: East Tennessee PBS in Knoxville, WTCI in Chattanooga, WJLT in Martin, and WKNO in Memphis. As contributor and Emmy Award-winning producer Todd Jarrell puts it, it is a chance for “imaginative, energetic PBS professionals focused on working together to organize effectively and build something unique, worthy, helpful, and just plain cool.”
The show’s emphasis is on educating the general audience to support local products and services. It has been so successful in promoting local producers that it has attracted backers like the USDA and Pick Tennessee Products. In fact, the executive producer of “Live Green Tennessee,” WCTE’s Desirée Duncan, is intent on making the show even more interesting, relevant, and fresh. For a small taste, read the description below for the story Desirée recently produced about Short Mountain Distillery:
“In recent years, the art of moonshining has had a revival. Short Mountain Distillery is Tennessee’s sixth distillery making authentic, small-batch Tennessee moonshine, bourbon, and whiskey from organic corn that is stone-milled on the 300-acre Little Short Mountain Farm nestled in Cannon County. WCTE’s Desirée Duncan traveled to Short Mountain to see how this locally owned and family-funded distillery has strived to create jobs, help keep local farmers in business, generate needed revenue that will stay in the county, and bring another unique Tennessee brand to America and the world.”
“Live Green Tennessee” airs on WCTE-TV Monday nights (channel 22 on both DISH® and DIRECTV®) at 7 p.m., with an encore presentation Thursdays at 9 p.m. The show also airs across the state on other PBS channels as well. Check your local listings.
If you have a compelling idea for a “Live Green Tennessee” story, you are invited to submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on “Live Green Tennessee” and to watch episodes, go to livegreenwcte.tv/.
Come and run in the “‘Live Green Tennessee’ Run for Your Mama” 5K in May. For more info, go to wcte.org.