via press release:
TRAVEL CHANNEL REVS UP THURSDAY NIGHTS WITH SECOND SEASONS
OF “SAND MASTERS” AND “TRUCK STOP USA,” PREMIERING APRIL 5
One-Hour Season Premiere Featuring Back-to-Back Episodes of “Sand Masters”
Kick Off At 8:00 p.m., ET/PT; Followed By One-Hour Season Premiere of Back-to-Back Episodes of “Truck Stop USA” at 9:00 p.m., ET/PT
CHEVY CHASE, MD (March 1, 2012) – Travel Channel has revved up Thursday nights this spring with two returning series on Thursday, April 5. Primetime on Thursdays will kick off with the one-hour season premiere of “Sand Masters” featuring back-to-back episodes at 8:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., ET/PT. The 13 episode half-hour series features a group of artists who travel the world creating unimaginable sand masterpieces on a massive scale. “Truck Stop USA,” also featuring back-to-back episodes for its one-hour season premiere at 9:00 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., ET/PT, returns with more quirky characters and stories. In this 13 episode weekly half-hour series, Midway Truck Stop proprietor, Joe Bechtold, pulls out all the stops to make his truck stop the next great American tourist destination.
In the first episode of “Sand Masters” at 8:00 p.m., ET/PT, Rusty Croft and the sand sculpting team help an eccentric hotel owner draw a crowd during the annual Fantasy Fest celebration in Key West, Florida. Aside from creating a 60-ton masterpiece featuring life-sized mermaids, party-goers and an octopus beneath a 16-foot-tall tower of sand, their sculpture will actually be a target for a world-renowned, high-diving stuntman known as Professor Splash! In addition to sculpting to precise specifications to ensure an incredible 30-foot dive into inches of water won't cause life-threatening injuries, the team also battles an ominous tropical storm that threatens to wipe out all of their hard work.
In a second all-new episode at 8:30 p.m., ET/PT, the sand sculpting team hits the Las Vegas strip to create a huge cowboy-themed sand sculpture for rodeo champion Gary Leffew to celebrate the National Finals Rodeo. Trouble ensues when the team works amid the chaos of historic Fremont Street, an unstable jelly-like sand pile, a creative throwdown between two sculptors and some destructive late-night vandalism at the hands of drunken partygoers. The team buckles down in an attempt to finish their amazing gambling and rodeo-themed sand masterpiece featuring a huge, working craps table, cowgirls and an ornery smoke-blowing mechanical bull. “Sand Masters” is produced by Painless Entertainment for Travel Channel. For Painless Entertainment, executive producer is Jim Casey. For Travel Channel, executive producer is David E. Gerber.
In the season premiere episode of “Truck Stop USA” at 9:00 p.m., ET/PT, Midway Truck Stop owner, Joe Bechtold, is tasked with hosting the Epic Mudrun Race at Midway and mapping potential course routes and obstacle locations for the race. He outfits a spirited group of mud runners and offers an all-you-can-eat pasta dinner the night before the race to help ensure the travelers coming from around the country are happy. However, the day of the race, the Epic Mudrun Race crew alerts Bechtold that there is a problem with the finish line. With little time, and the issue threatening to shut down the race, Bechtold and the crew decide to take a fire hose to the mud banks in hopes of turning the empty water pool into a mud pit to avert disaster.
In the second premiere episode at 9:30 p.m., ET/PT, Bechtold gathers his managers outside the diner before a large-scale bike rally begins to give them the lowdown on the event. It’s going to be busy and he needs everyone to pitch in to make this event a success. Bechtold books a stunt jumper, Terry Russell, to be the main attraction at the bike rally, and jump 80 feet over a semi-truck. Bechtold has never had such a high stakes event at Midway. A successful event could do wonders for Midway, but an accident could be a black mark that Midway might never shake. “Truck Stop USA” is produced by Leftfield Pictures for Travel Channel. For Leftfield Pictures, executive producers are Brent Montgomery and David George. Co-executive producer is Matthew J. Braley. For Travel Channel, executive producer is Stone Roberts.
TRAVEL CHANNEL (http://www.travelchannel.com) is a multiplatform travel lifestyle brand with the core mission of providing inspiring and compelling programming that takes viewers beyond their everyday destinations, making the unfamiliar familiar, whether it's around the world or around the block. A dual feed network that is also available in HD, Travel Channel is the world’s leading travel media brand, and is available in over 94 million U.S. cable homes. Owned and operated by Scripps Networks Interactive (NYSE: SNI), Travel Channel has offices in Chevy Chase, MD, and New York, NY. Scripps Networks Interactive (NYSE: SNI) also owns and operates HGTV, DIY Network, Food Network, Cooking Channel and Great American Country.