Special night of programs focus on Haiti earthquake

In 2010, epic earthquakes all over the planet delivered one of the worst annual death tolls ever recorded. On Tuesday, Jan. 11, Nova, Frontline and Independent Lens each feature stories from Haiti as they recover from this disaster. Find out more about these shows.

Nova at 7 pm:
In exclusive coverage, a Nova camera crew follows a team of US geologists as they first enter Haiti in the immediate aftermath of the tragedy. It is a race against time as they hunt for crucial evidence that will help them determine exactly what happened deep underground and what the risks are of a new killer quake. Barely a month after the Haiti quake, Chile was struck by a quake unleashing a tsunami that put the entire Pacific coast on high alert. In a coastal town devastated by the rushing wave, Nova follows a team of geologists as they battle aftershocks to measure the displacement caused by the earthquake.

Frontline at 8 pm
In the chaos of the earthquake that devastated Haiti, thousands of the country’s worst criminals seized the opportunity to stage a mass escape from the National Penitentiary. One year later, the gang leaders are re-asserting control in the capital, threatening the country’s stability. With unique access to the police units trying to hunt down the gangsters — and revealing encounters with the gangsters themselves — Frontline examines the uphill fight to rebuild Haiti in the face of deep-rooted corruption and intimidation.

Independent Lens at 9 p.m.
In the midst of Haiti’s lush mountains and historical relics is an epidemic of over 500,000 orphan children who wander the streets day and night. Known as the “soulless” and forgotten by their own people, they do what they must to survive each day. “Children of Haiti” follows three teenage boys — Denick, a prolific and charming 14 year-old; Nickenson, a tough but sensitive 16 year-old; and Antoine, an energetic paint-thinner abuser — who reflect on their country and their lives, while sharing a common dream of education, government assistance, and social acceptance.

ACL book featured at Texas Book Festival

Austin City Limits: 35 Years in Photographs will be featured at the Texas Book Festival with an event on Saturday, October 16, from 11:15 am to noon at the Paramount Theatre at 713 Congress Avenue. Photographer Scott Newton  will talk about his experience with the show with music journalist Andy Langer. Newton will also show photos from the book and talk about the moment in which the image was created. This event is free and open to the public.

The new book Austin City Limits: 35 Years in Photographs captures the excitement and energy of the show in photographs. The images span ACL’s first 35 years, with special emphasis on legendary artists and the most compelling contemporary performers from the past ten to fifteen years. Books will be available for sale at the Texas Book Festival or you can buy them online at austincitylimits.org

KLRU working with newspapers for debate

KLRU is working in partnership with the Austin American-Statesman, San Antonio Express-News, Houston Chronicle, Fort Worth Star-Telegram and Dallas Morning News to present a debate among the leading candidates for governor.

Candidates who register at least 10 percent support in a September poll conducted by the newspapers will be invited to attend this debate.

We appreciate our viewers’ concerns about having all candidates invited to participate in the debate. If you would like to voice your concerns please do so in the comments section of this post and we will pass comments along to the news organizations with whom we are working.

Membership drive update

KLRU is off to a great start, but the need for resources remains.  In the last four days, our community has given $81,000 towards our goal of $240,000.  We have 13 days to go.  Give your gift now to help us reach our goal and return to uninterrupted programming early.

Last night was a great example of how KLRU is changing the way we think about on-air fundraising.  We pledged ANTIQUES ROADSHOW live in our studios at its regular time.  Instead of offering expensive thank you gifts, KLRU offered tickets to an event that brings the community together.  By giving $120 in support of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW, you can receive 2 tickets to the KLRU Antiques Appraisal Fair in January. You’ll be entitled to bring up to three items to the event to have them appraised by local antiques experts. Help us continue to provide great content like ANTIQUES ROADSHOW by giving a gift now at this link.

A total of 80% of our funding comes from right here in Central Texas, at an average gift amount of $80.  Our ability to provide you the highest quality PBS programming, local productions, one-of-a kind events and outreach activities depends on you.  We help you explore your world, and your support makes that exploration available to everyone.

Thank you for supporting and watching KLRU!

The Experiment Continues, but the Need for Resources Remains

KLRU-TV, Austin PBS needs to raise $240,000 in the next 17 days.  If we reach our goal early, we’ll return to uninterrupted programming immediately.

As you know KLRU has experimented this year with ways to reduce our need to raise money via pledge.  In recent years we’ve reduced on-air pledge from 86 days to just 49 days so far this year.  In June, we tested pledging our regular schedule on five-consecutive nights, while highlighted groups doing good work in our community.  We stopped fundraising after 11pm on weeknights, so that Charlie Rose airs at its regular time.  During our March drive, we reduced the number of pledge interruptions by 20%, while investing new resources to raise money online.  Finally we reduced the use of expensive thank you gifts by offering tickets to events that fulfill our mission, while showing you our appreciation.

Next year, we plan to cut back on pledge as never before. However, the need for resources remains.  A total of 80% of our funding comes from right here in Central Texas, at an average gift amount of $80.  Our ability to provide you the highest quality PBS programming, local productions, one-of-a kind events and outreach activities depends on you.  We help you explore your world, and your support makes that exploration available to everyone.

Thank you for supporting and watching KLRU!

Frontline/World reporter answers questions about Haiti

Post-disaster food aid saves lives, but it can also undercut local merchants critical to the supply chain. FRONTLINE/World and NPR’s Planet Money reporter Adam Davidson explores this predicament in “Haiti: The Aid Dilemma,” the latest in a series of economic reports from post-earthquake Haiti.

The story airs as the second of three magazine-length segments in this week’s episode of FRONTLINE/World. In advance of the broadcast, we are previewing the segment on the Web and inviting viewers to post questions and comments. Davidson will be responding to the postings the day of the broadcast: today, June 29,  from  11 a.m. to noon.

Preview the segment and post questions here