via press release:
UP UP AND AWAY! NEW SEASON OF
SOARS ON FEBRUARY 23 AT 8PM ET/PT
Texas, Idaho, Utah, Kentucky, North & South Dakota And Wyoming Featured This Season
NEW YORK, February 18, 2014 – The most expansive aerial series in U.S. television history returns as Smithsonian Channel’s AERIAL AMERICA takes flight with an all-new season beginning Sunday, February 23 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. This season, AERIAL AMERICA soars across the states of Texas, Idaho, Utah, Kentucky, North and South Dakota, and Wyoming.
First launched in 2008, AERIAL AMERICA is now 43 states into its epic quest to capture all 50 states from the air. Shot from a helicopter armed with a state-of-the-art Cineflex V-14 HD camera system, each episode uses breathtaking aerial cinematography to reveal what makes each of the 50 United States unique - from beautiful natural landmarks, to sites of important turning points in history, to fascinating locations far off the beaten path... and the rich variety of wildlife that calls each state home.
Soaring all the way from Alaska’s Denali Base Camp to the sunlit beaches of the Florida Keys, AERIAL AMERICA offers the ultimate “bird’s eye view” of our nation, the compelling stories behind its rich history... and the seemingly endless beauty of its land.
AERIAL AMERICA: TEXAS (Premieres February 23 at 8 p.m. ET/PT)
Texans have been bragging about their state since before it joined the union in 1845. AERIAL AMERICA takes to the skies to remember the Alamo and to celebrate the other big stories and even bigger personalities that have left their mark on the Lone Star State. Rugged soldier/statesmen like Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston set the tone for Texas swagger that George W. Bush and Jerry Jones made famous. But this is a state with staggering variety, from the coastal charm of Galveston to West Texas oil country and border towns like El Paso. Big D, Houston, San Antonio and Austin are all fascinating and distinctive in their own right, even as they’re all thoroughly Texan.
AERIAL AMERICA: IDAHO (Premieres March 2 at 8 p.m. ET/PT)
Idaho may be best known for its famous potatoes, but a visual tour from the air reveals a rich trove of stories: The New York railroad tycoon who decided to build the world’s most luxurious ski resort from scratch. A wilderness wonderland that’s named simply “The Frank.” And of course, a canyon that called to one of history’s greatest daredevils, Evel Knievel. Long a beacon for pioneers and gold-seekers, Idaho was also home to the world’s first atomic power plant. And one secret to its success is where the river runs out: a 10,000 square mile aquifer that filters through volcanic soil for close 200 years, releasing water that’s oxygen-rich, crystal clear and exactly 58 degrees Fahrenheit – perfect for hatcheries that provide 70% of all trout eaten in America.
AERIAL AMERICA: UTAH (Premieres March 9 at 8 p.m. ET/PT)
There’s nothing like Utah’s Big Five National Parks from the air. From the otherworldly pinnacles of Arches National Park to the blinding white terrain of the Bonneville Salt Flats and the gorge where Thelma & Louise soared into Hollywood history, the state of Utah captivates almost all who come here with its alien beauty. The Utah landscape is so “out there” that one group of scientists uses it as a stand-in for Mars. AERIAL AMERICA discovers a replica space station, and the students who spend weeks here simulating what it would be like to live on the Red Planet. Utah’s Great Salt Lake inspired Mormon leader Brigham Young to declare “this is the right place,” and today’s dazzling Temple Square in Salt Lake City is a tribute to Mormon grit and faith.
AERIAL AMERICA: KENTUCKY (Premieres March 16 at 8 p.m. ET/PT)
AERIAL AMERICA flies high over the Bluegrass State, with the exhilarating beauty of its rolling hills, grazing thoroughbreds, and bourbon distilleries. The Appalachian wilderness that Daniel Boone first explored still attracts adventurers today, but the legendary feud of the Hatfields and McCoys has been laid to rest. Modern Kentuckians prefer to celebrate happier legacies, from Derby Day and bluegrass music to Louisville basketball and the Louisville Slugger. The home to Fort Knox has also spawned other treasures, like a horseracing business that generates $10 billion a year.
AERIAL AMERICA: THE DAKOTAS (Premieres March 23 at 8 p.m. ET/PT)
AERIAL AMERICA takes to the air above North and South Dakota to explore how two very different sibling states were carved out of one vast territory. Named for one of the Sioux’s greatest tribes, the Dakotas still bear imprints of their native inhabitants, from the site where Sacagawea met Lewis and Clark to the monumental sculpture of Crazy Horse that is slowly emerging to challenge Mount Rushmore for attention. But the loudest attraction has to be in the tiny town of Sturgis, where a population of 6,700 greets 500,000 bikers every year for its famous motorcycle rally. While the emergence of the railroad ended up splitting them apart, the two states come together in the Dakota Dome to see whose college football team will earn bragging rights for the year.
AERIAL AMERICA: WYOMING (Premieres March 30 at 8 p.m. ET/PT)
America’s 44th state has some of the most breathtaking scenery in the nation and AERIAL AMERICA captures it all from the air. From a mysterious ancient medicine wheel, to its mysterious Devil’s Tower, to the colorful patterns of Yellowstone’s most famous geological site... the steaming Grand Prismatic Spring. But Wyoming is also a place of great industry. AERIAL AMERICA flies across the largest coal mine in North America and captures one of the biggest machines on the planet in action... a giant dragline excavator called Ursa Major or Big Bear.
AERIAL AMERICA is produced by Tusker Television for Smithsonian Channel. Tusker Television’s Executive Producer isToby Beach. Executive Producers for Smithsonian Channel are David Royle and Charles Poe.
ABOUT SMITHSONIAN CHANNEL
Smithsonian Channel is owned by Smithsonian Networks, a joint venture between Showtime Networks Inc. and the Smithsonian Institution. Its programs are largely inspired by the assets of the world’s largest museum complex. Smithsonian Channel features award-winning original documentaries, series, and groundbreaking programs highlighting America’s historical, cultural and scientific heritage. Smithsonian Channel brings the American experience home in high definition and Dolby Digital 5.1 and is available to customers of DirecTV, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Charter Communications, Cablevision, Verizon, AT&T, and more. Learn more at www.smithsonianchannel.com.