Marshfield to be Featured on PBS’s ‘Around the Corner with John McGivern’

Marshfield Monarchs photo

Marshfield, WI (OnFocus) Marshfield will be one of the communities featured in the ninth season of PBS’s “Around the Corner with John McGivern.”

Showcasing dozens of places around Wisconsin, the show follows McGivern as he explores the history and culture of each community, big and small. The focus of each episode isn’t so much on the tourist attractions, but what the average person might come across, and who they would meet, should they come to visit.

“We want to know what it’s like to live, work, and play in your town,” said Lois Maurer, Producer/Director. “We sit on a lot of people’s front porches and talk to them about what it’s like to live in the community.”

Ultimately, the goal of each episode is to highlight different parts of a community so that even its residents will discover something new, she said.

Wildwood Zoo, the city’s top attraction for visitors, was one of the stops for the film crew this month with input from zookeeper, Steve Burns.

“I’ve been a fan of their show for awhile, so it was a really neat experience for me,” said Burns. “John was really easy to talk to. The whole crew was very laid back, so it was an enjoyable experience.”

Munsey & Boda at Wildwood Zoo

He discussed Kodiak bears Munsey and Boda, who arrived in 2015, and how they’re two of only three bears of their species in North America outside Kodiak Island in Alaska.

“I’m obviously biased, but I can honestly say it’s the best bear exhibit I’ve seen, and I’ve seen a lot,” said Burns. “Our bears are very lucky. They get more square footage than another other zoo exhibit I’ve ever seen.”

While the weather didn’t cooperate on filming day, the crew returned later for additional shots of the bears, who were “hamming it up” in their pond, he said.

While at the zoo, the film crew also spoke with James and Melissa Gwiazda, who spearheaded the new monarch butterfly exhibit which opened this summer.

“One day I got a phone call out of the blue from a lady named Susan [Borri, Content Producer] from PBS. She said she was at the zoo that day (while it was storming), and she asked me questions about the exhibit and how we got started,” said Melissa.

Marshfield Monarchs photo

During their segment, the Gwiazdas discussed how they went from raising just two butterflies at home about four years ago to releasing over 1,500 this summer.

“We talked about what to do when one has a disease and how important it is to take precautions with the diseases or you could be spreading it to others,” she said. “The experience overall was really exciting! The PBS crew was amazing to work with! John McGivern is a super funny and nice guy and it was easy to talk to him.”

The couple hopes that viewers enjoy the program and learn more about the process behind raising monarch butterflies.

“The entire process of a monarch life cycle is simply amazing. They are such intelligent little creatures and they need our help,” she said. “We encourage people to research them and learn as much as possible. The more help they get, the better. Let’s get these guys off that endangered list — we have that power to do so.”

Besides Wildwood Zoo, the episode will also include interviews at Jurustic Park, Wenzel Family Plaza, Nasonville Dairy, The Kitchen Table, Weinbrenner Shoe Company, Marshfield Furniture, Marshfield Clinic, 2 ½ Cups, and with residents Chris and Erin Howard.

The episode is expected to air in early April. Other communities to be featured this season include Beaver Dam, Ashland, Shawano, Marinette, Menasha, Janesville, then Milwaukee’s Story Hill neighborhood, new Deer District, Brewery District, and Jackson Park.

Kaylin S
Author: Kaylin S

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