SOPTV will film Crater Lake, 14 byways
March 29, 2000
By JOHN DARLING
Southern Oregon Public Television will produce two shows over the next year with grants from the Oregon Department of Transportation and Friends of Crater Lake.
SOPTV received $46,000 from ODOT to produce shows on Oregon’s 14 Scenic Byways and $7,000 to begin production of an hour-long history of Crater Lake for the National Park’s centennial in 2002, said production director Greg Frederick.
Crews from SOPTV will write, shoot and edit 12 two-minute shorts and a half-hour show on Scenic Byways, which include the Gold Hill-Diamond Lake-Roseburg loop, the Crater Lake to Klamath Falls road, the entire Oregon Coast and the Cascade Lakes west of Bend, he said.
The short clips will be viewable on roadside kiosks, available for Web-site elements and aired between regular shows on SOPTV and Oregon Public Broadcasting in Portland, he said. The half-hour Byways show will run on public television and be offered to municipalities, chambers of commerce, tourist bureaus and viewers.
The $7,000 grant from Friends of Crater Lake is the first chunk of $60,000 the group is raising for research, scripting, shooting and editing of the hour-long show on the park’s 100-year history, said Glenn Kay, of Salem, a retired National Parks Service educator, board member of Friends of Crater Lake and coordinator of the park’s centennial.
The $7,000 was donated by the Mazama Club, he said, and the rest will be raised from foundations, corporations and donors, chiefly in Southern Oregon. The production will use no government resources beyond archives at Crater Lake National Park, he said.
“We’re shaking the trees to raise money,” he said, “but so far I’m amazed at the indifference of Southern Oregon corporations we’ve approached. It’s been a struggle to raise money.”
The show will be offered to all public television stations in the Northwest. The group also hopes to sell it to cable outlets such as Discovery channel, History channel and National Geographic, Kay added.
The centennial marks President Theodore Roosevelt’s signing of legislation making Crater Lake a national park on May 22, 1902. The film will cover geologic history of the volcano that created the scenic wonder millennia ago, pioneer photographer Peter Britt’s first pictures of it in 1874 and the struggle of William Gladstone Steel to get Crater Lake declared a National Park, Kay said.
Park archives contain “a wonderful collection” of vintage 3- by 4-inch glass-mounted, hand-tinted lantern slides, Steel’s extensive correspondence and many other historic documents, he said.
The two shows are part of an increasing emphasis by SOPTV on original productions about people and places in the broadcast area, said Frederick.
Other new productions include “Hometown Heroes,” stories of regional celebrities, “Oregon Food and Wine,” a show about how to prepare great seasonal meals with local ingredients, an art series with locally renowned performers, and “Historical Perspectives,” bringing local legends to television in partnership with area historical societies. SOPTV, in a partnership arrangement with the Britt Music Festivals, will air Mahler’s Fifth Symphony on Aug. 13.
“It’s a big thing for a TV station of this size to produce high quality, long format programs,” said Frederick. “If you exclude news, a lot of stations our size aren’t producing anywhere near this much and this quality.”