5 Surprising Things About the NHPBS Auction You Probably Didn’t Know but Should
Looking through their archives online, New Hampshire's public television station began in 1959 as WENH and over the last 60 years has carried PBS (Public Broadcasting System) and its predecessor's programming NET (National Education Television) in addition to producing several hours of original programming each week.
That continues with "Granite State Challenge," "What's Brewing With Cliff" (hosted by longtime WOKQ DJ Cliff Blake), "Veterans of NH", "Windows to The Wild" and "Our Hometown," according to nhpbs.org.
In addition to pledge drives during special programming (such as the classic concerts and special events PBS is known for nationally), each spring, NHPBS hosts an auction with special prime time, live programming that really is the best of live/local TV with NHPBS hosts and special community guests (including myself and Sarah from the Shark Morning Show) auctioning items and highlighting the importance of local, educational programming on public TV.
Give it a watch! Here's 5 things you wouldn't guess about the auction:
1) All the auction items are donated by the businesses, venues, and benefactors in the community, and the great cross-section of the region (local restaurants, concert venues, artisans) come from four of the six New England states. (It's true Rhode Island and Connecticut are kind NYC north anyway.)
2) All the anchors, camera people, floor directors, phone bank are all volunteers--many ARE professionals but each gives their time both to for the fun and to give back to a community institution.
3) It's all live and barely scripted! There are just bullet points on paper and no fancy teleprompters, writers, or stage managers to direct what goes over the air. It's in that way a throwback to the earliest days of TV broadcasting.
4) NHPBS is in Durham, right on the UNH campus, and many volunteers and part time staff are from the school.
5) The auction (in its 46th year) has expanded to 10 nights each year total and raises 10-15 million bucks each year. Wow!