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New Outdoor Recreation Show on WXXA-TV Brings “Fresh Air” to Family TV Viewing

Starting Saturday, December 10th at 7:30 pm on WXXA-TV, families everywhere will find new outdoor family fun both close to home and all around New York State on EMPIRE STATE OUTDOORS!

EMPIRE STATE OUTDOORS (ESO) is a fast-moving half hour program featuring “family friendly” outdoor adventures showcasing New York’s abundant natural resources. ESO will be seen on WXXA-TV most Saturday evenings at 7:30 pm through March of 2006.

Parents and children will be treated to a series of fast-paced, fascinating segments which demonstrate how easy is to explore the Empire State’s great outdoors while appreciating their role in preserving and protecting New York’s precious environmental resources. Program hosts Colleen McCarthy and Tim Singer lead the way on ESO’s weekly recreational adventures, with the emphasis on safe family fun.

ESO will spotlight several Albany-area locations and events across the 13-week program series, including visits to the Albany Pine Bush in search of the Karner Blue Butterfly and skiing at Bellayre—cross country, downhill and telemark. And, Albany’s Hudson Riverfront provides the backdrop for an entire ESO program!

Beyond Albany, did you know a complete forest ecosystem can be found in the heart of Manhattan? Or that mother bears can birth and nurse a litter of cubs while slumbering during winter hibernation? Or that in New York alone there are now over ninety nesting pairs of the once threatened bald eagle?

You will learn these fun facts about nature in New York and so much more by tuning in to Empire State Outdoors (ESO). Underwritten by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) ESO is sponsored by the New York State Department of Economic Development (I Love NY), the New York State Health Department and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, among others.

Development of ESO began nearly a decade ago when Neil Satterly, currently the Assistant Director of Public Affairs and Communications for DEC, joined the Department. With an extensive television background and passion for the environment, Neil proposed creation of a family-oriented TV show highlighting the State's resources and recreational opportunities. An early ESO pilot, screened before environmental organizations and sportsman's groups, generated rave reviews. Positive public feedback, coupled with growing DEC support, helped Empire State Outdoors transition from a great idea into a great program.

DEC chose the New York Network (NYN), a program of the State University's Office of University Relations, to provide the initial creative and final production services for ESO. Operating from a new, all-digital TV facility at Albany's Empire State Plaza, NYN is a recognized leader in providing television production and transmission services to State government. Also selected through a competitive process was Carr-Hughes Productions, responsible for production planning, on-site videography, program scripting, and other logistical details. Carr-Hughes is an award-winning New York company with an excellent reputation both nationally and internationally for its production of major, live sporting events, including Olympic coverage for NBC Sports. Other ESO partners soon joined the collaborative effort; helping to create an upbeat, custom music score, design sleek graphics, and develop the memorable tagline Empire State Outdoors: Brought to you by Nature.

With its creative team in place, DEC began planning ESO video shoots all across the state, during all four seasons, to gather the raw material needed to create the four or five, two to three minute story segments that comprise each weekly episode. Among the dozens of features upcoming on ESO are stories on Back Country Camping, New York City's Urban Forest, Snow Shoeing, Bluefish Fishing in Long Island’s South Bay, aboard the Seth Green Research Vessel, Maple Syrup Making, and the Karner Blue Butterfly of the Capital District. Rotating show segments include "How To" features on outdoor recreational activities and Outdoor Classroom (for kids K-12).

Every ESO episode offers viewers a stunning video pathway to New York's great open spaces—its sparkling lakes and rivers, breathtaking ocean beaches, majestic mountain ranges, and the wide variety of colorful fish and wildlife inhabiting these wonderful habitats.

Friendly, enthusiastic, program co-hosts Tim Singer and Colleen McCarthy demonstrate how easy, economical, and exciting it is to participate in recreational activities in New York, making ESO an appealing program for women, families, and casual and avid sportsmen while providing a great opportunity to cultivate a large, family-based audience. The arrival of ESO to the airwaves is well-timed. Research indicates mothers of school-age children are eager for programs providing an educational, wholesome alternative to the usual weekend television fare.

Empire State Outdoors will help New Yorkers discover the wonderful world that lies outside their door, and help foster wonderful memories and annual traditions of outdoor, family fun. For more information on the show, visit the ESO website at www.esotv.com. With viewer and advertiser support, and through the "open window" of a family's TV screen, ESO can offer a virtual pathway to Nature's wonders for New Yorkers of all ages.