via press release:
DESTINATION AMERICA’S 2015-16 UPFRONT PROGRAMMING SLATE TAKES ALL-AMERICAN ENTERTAINMENT ACROSS THE COUNTRY
(New York, NY ) – On the heels of its best year ever and ranking among cable’s top five fastest growing networks[i], Destination America is taking its success on a cross-country road trip this 2015-16 upfront season in a programming slate packed with fun and all-American entertainment. Whether cooking special sauce at a Texas BBQ competition, exploring unknown territory in Alaska, hunting for monsters in West Virginia, building an epic dream house in the Rockies, or never giving up the fight in the wrestling ring, Destination America is TV that celebrates U.S.
“Like any good road trip, the most fun is in the detours and there’s no exception on Destination America, where we’re broadening original programming hours to transport viewers off the beaten path with stories from all across these United States of Awesome,” said Marc Etkind, general manager of Destination America. “After three years of double-digit growth[ii] and a small brand refresh that launched earlier this month[iii], we’re more committed than ever to filling every minute with finger-licking, flag-waving, frightful fun.”
Destination America journeys into the upfront with the debut of two landmark specials: EPIC AMERICA, premiering Thursday, May 7 from 8-10pm ET, takes viewers on a larger-than-life tour of America from East to West that captures the beauty, ferocity, and history of iconic landscapes like the Mississippi River, Yellowstone, the Everglades, and the Grand Canyon; and 9/11: THE LOST HERO (wt) documents the incredible story of Jason Thomas, told for the first time in his own words, who was identified as the mysterious unknown soldier responsible for the most incredible rescue mission of 9/11.
Embarking on the ultimate road-trip season, Destination America celebrates summer in true patriotic fashion – with BBQ and fireworks! This May, the network takes a “pit” stop with BBQ PITMASTERS, returning with an all-stars edition that honors the uniquely American BBQ tradition with the greatest competitors from previous seasons. Then in July, the network teams up with USA Today for the third annual RED, WHITE AND YOU contest, bringing food, fireworks, and fun to deserving American communities.
Veer north for the next stop on Destination America’s cross-country tour, BUYINGTHE ROCKIES. The latest addition to the popular “Buying” franchise follows real American families looking for the mountain home of their dreams. No matter where roads lead viewers, local mysteries and legends are part of the fabric of any community. Nowhere is that more true than in the mysterious Appalachian Mountains, where Destination America’s #1 hit series MOUNTAIN MONSTERSfollows a team of native West Virginians on the hunt for Bigfoot and other legendary beasts. Then, explore America’s spookiest local haunts with the newest paranormal powerhouse GHOST ASYLUM, featuring a passionate team of Tennessee ghost hunters on a mission to capture restless souls in abandoned locations with frightening histories.
From small-town folklore to national sporting events and all the roadside attractions in between, Destination America captures the best of all-American entertainment. More than four million people tuned into the first four weeks ofIMPACT WRESTLING premieres earlier in 2015, leading the network to record its best January ever in Prime HH delivery. Considered one of the hottest, most action-packed entertainment events on television today, wrestling continues on Friday nights – including a LIVE showing on May 8 at 9/8c – featuring nonstop, in-your-face action with no filters, epic battles, and some of the biggest names in professional wrestling, including Jeff Hardy, Bobby Roode, Kurt Angle, Bobby Lashley and Gail Kim.
The full roadmap of Destination America’s upfront slate includes:
SPECIALS & EVENTS
Beautifully shot and powerfully narrated, EPIC AMERICA is the result of 3,000 days spent filming with cutting-edge cameras across 29 states to capture our country’s beauty and ferocity like never before. Visit iconic, inspiring landscapes like the Mississippi River, the Appalachian Mountains, Yellowstone, the Everglades, and the Aleutian Islands, to learn not only how these natural wonders came to be but how they control the climate, wildlife, and people that call America home.
9/11: THE LOST HERO (wt)
When the Twin Towers fell, two police officers became trapped beneath the rubble. Their rescue seemed impossible, but then a mysterious soldier conducted the most incredible rescue mission of 9/11 before vanishing without a trace. The officer he saved tried to find the unidentified hero, but it wasn’t until five years later that the soldier finally came forward. His name is Jason Thomas and this is his incredible story, told in his own words for the first time.
RED, WHITE AND YOU
Destination America is partnering with national multi-platform media outlet USA TODAY to bring the RED, WHITE AND YOU contest to two deserving American towns with the opportunity to win a spectacular Fourth of July celebration complete with food, entertainment and, of course, fireworks! Whether it’s to mark a local anniversary, recognize a group’s accomplishments, or deliver cheer during a difficult time, every town is worthy of a fanfare-filled Fourth of July.
BUYING THE ROCKIES
BUYING THE ROCKIES follows a real American family looking to leave conventional homes behind and find the log cabin of their dreams in the Rocky Mountains. In each episode, prospective buyers tour three stunning homes in the hope of finding their new dream getaway. Travel a mile up in the sky, where mountain views mingle with the clouds and the properties range from primitive cabins to million-dollar log homes with modern conveniences.
ALASKA HAUNTING (wt)
In Alaska, no one can hear you when you scream. Miles of forest separate neighbors in America’s northern-most state, but hauntings are so common there that locals turn to the Internet to share their terrifying tales. In ALASKA HAUNTING, the last frontier becomes the backdrop for scary ghost stories, where frigid winter weather leaves victims frozen in fear with nowhere to run.
IMPACT WRESTLING is considered one of the hottest, most action-packed entertainment events on television today, featuring some of the biggest names in professional wrestling including Jeff Hardy, Bobby Roode, Kurt Angle, Bobby Lashley and Gail Kim. Destination America officially enters the ring in January 2015 with its first network premiere of All-American entertainment, IMPACT WRESTLING.
GHOST ASYLUM follows the Tennessee Wraith Chasers (TWC), a passionate paranormal team, as they hunt down ghosts in the most frightening asylums, sanitariums, penitentiaries and haunted hotspots across the U.S. Stepping into abandoned locations that only the bravest dare to enter, the team’s goal is not just to conjure paranormal activity but to physically capture restless souls with their custom-created ghost traps.
MOUNTAIN MONSTERS follows a team of expert hunters and trappers as they defend Appalachia from mysterious creatures that have spawned countless sightings in the region for generations. As native sons of West Virginia, the Appalachian Investigators of Mysterious Sightings (AIMS) put a lifetime of training to the test as they investigate, track, and attempt to trap legendary local beasts like Bigfoot, Chupacabra, and Sheepsquatch to prove they are fact, not folklore.
BBQ PITMASTERS: ALL STARS
This season of BBQ PITMASTERS is primed to be the best one yet with an All Stars event uniting the biggest mouths, baddest smokers and hottest rivalries in Pitmasters history! Myron Mixon, Tuffy Stone and Moe Cason return as judges but with a new twist that eliminates blind judging. A $50,000 cash prize, entry into prestigious Kingsford Invitational and the juiciest bragging rights in Pitmasters history are on the line – but to be the best, they need to beat the best!
BBQ PIT WARS
Follow top competitors in the BBQ circuit as they engage in heated BBQ battle to dethrone the King of ‘Cue, Myron Mixon. They are considered the most successful pitmasters around, but every competition is a clean slate and an imposing challenge. Join these superstars of sauce behind the grill as they compete at some of the most prestigious and demanding BBQ competitions to see what it’s really like when you’re in the thick of BBQ battle.
Within the Last Frontier lies a region known as the Alaska Triangle, spanning 200,000 unforgiving square miles where some believe that mysterious monsters are threatening the safety of local people. The ALASKA MONSTERS team – native outdoorsmen and experienced survivalists – set out to investigate the Triangle region by region in their mission of tracking and identifying the most dangerous of these legendary monsters.
RAILROAD ALASKA follows an elite crew of workers – brakemen, engineers and drivers – as they battle ferocious weather and treacherous terrain to keep Alaska’s critical, 650-mile long, railroad rolling. For homesteaders who live miles from the nearest roads or towns, the railroad provides a lifeline to supplies, food, and help. The crew works in miserable, freezing conditions, showing off their ingenuity and expertise, to get the job done no matter what
In A HAUNTING, real evil lurks in the darkest shadows and in the most ordinary places. Through spellbinding first-person accounts, each episode profiles the story of one family traumatized by unknown supernatural forces. New this season, A HAUNTING gives a fresh look and feel to dramatic recreations of some of the scariest stories known to man, leaving viewers with a lingering sense that life after death is much more powerful than anyone could possibly imagine.
About Destination America
Destination America is the only network to celebrate the people, places, and stories of the United States. The inclusive network targeting Adults 25-54 is available in nearly 60 million homes, emblazoning television screens with the grit and tenacity, honesty and work ethic, humor and adventurousness that characterize our nation. Destination America features travel, food, adventure, home, and natural history, with original series like BBQ Pitmasters; A Haunting; Mountain Monsters; Buying Alaska; Buying the Bayou; and Railroad Alaska. For more information, please visit DestinationAmerica.com,facebook.com/DestinationAmerica, or twitter.com/DestAmerica. Destination America is part of Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the world’s #1 pay-tv programmer reaching nearly 3 billion cumulative subscribers in 220 countries and territories.
[i] For 2014, Destination America ranked among cable’s top 5 fastest growing networks in Prime percent delivery gain for HH (tied #4) and among cable’s top 10 fastest growing networks in Prime percent delivery gain among W25-54 (#7), P2+ (tied #9), P18-49 (tied #9) and P25-54 (tied #10).
Source: Nielsen, NHI Calendar, 12/30/13-12/28/14 vs. 12/31/12-12/29/13, Prime M-Su 8p-11p, L+SD data, Time Period Based Dayparts, delivery percentage gains, Ad-supported cable, excluding any networks that did not air in at least 50% of the entire daypart/time period as well as Kids (TNNK), News (CNBC) and Sports (FS1) networks.
For 2014, Destination America ranked among cable’s top 5 fastest growing networks in Total Day percent delivery gain for W18-49 (#5) and among cable’s top 10 fastest growing networks in Total Day percent delivery gain among W25-54 (tied #7).
Source: Nielsen, NHI Calendar, 12/30/13-12/28/14 vs. 12/31/12-12/29/13, Total Day M-Su 6a-6a, L+SD data, Time Period Based Dayparts, delivery percentage gains, Ad-supported cable, excluding any networks that did not air in at least 50% of the entire daypart/time period as well as Kids (NKTN, TNNK), News (CNBC) and Sports (NBCS) networks.
[ii] In 2014, Destination America recorded its third consecutive year of year-over-year gains in Prime delivery among all key demos including HH, P2+ and P/M/W25-54/18-49 and in Total Day delivery among HH, P2+ and P/W15-54/18-49.