Fred Vigeant is WITF's Director of Programming and Promotions for TV and Radio. Fred manages the schedules for our radio and television platforms. He also analyzes audience research and manages the public affairs program Smart Talk. Previously, Fred was at WRVO in Oswego, NY for 12 years serving in various roles including Program Director and before that Operations Manager. Fred graduated from the State University of New York College at Oswego with a B.A. in Mass Communications and Broadcasting.
Join us during the month of May for all-new episodes of Nature Cat on WITF and PBS Kids 24/7 – WITFK and through the PBS Kids Video app. Here is a rundown of new episodes and associated activities:
May 15 at 7pm on WITFK, May 16 at 7pm on WITFK, May 21 at 7:30am on WITF:
Praying Mantis Hunters It’s time for the Bugaboo Bash and Daisy needs to brush up on her bug finding. She’s found a whole bunch of bugs for her Bugaboo Bash Bug Movie, but just needs one more important bug to impress expert entomologist, Granny Bunny. What is it? The praying mantis. Wow! Daisy needs the help of her friends to find one, but are there any around? And will Nature Cat’s fear of the praying mantis get in the way?
Curriculum: Look carefully for praying mantises in warm, sunny places so you can witness this insect’s awesome hunting and survival skills.
Great Salt Lake Nature Cat knows exactly what he wants to do today — go see the Colossal Cat Monument! Along with his fellow nature adventurers, Nature Cat sets off to find the monument… onward and westward! The gang is off, and nothing can stop them now. Wait, The Great Salt Lake is in their way. That’s one huge salty obstacle. Oh no! How will they get across to the monument?
Curriculum: When water flows into a lake, but has no way to flow out, the lake can become very salty—saltier, even, than the ocean.
May 15 at 7:30pm on WITFK, May 16 at 7:30pm on WITFK, May 22 at 7:30am on WITF:
Tally Ho! A Volcano! Welcome to the Amateur Volcanologist Club, everyone! Today, Nature Cat and his pals wants to take their lava game to a whole new level. That’s right, to a real active volcano! But first, they need to find one. Thanks to Amateur Volcanologitst Club President Steve the Vole, that’s not such a problem, but where will it be? Be careful, Nature Cat, the lava might be right under your feet, or at least it used to be a long time ago. Volca-no? More like Volcan-YES. Onward and volcano-ward!
Curriculum: You can find evidence of volcanic activity in surprising places and discover clues about how Earth has changed—and is still changing—over time.
No Rest For The Squeeky Shhh, it’s night-night time. Hal, Nature Cat and Daisy are all ready to go to sleep, but where is Squeeks? Oh, you haven’t heard? Squeeks says she doesn’t need sleep. She can spend her whole night skateboarding, doing karate, and yodeling. Or can she? Hmmm, Nature Cat and his gang think Squeeks needs some rest. After all, doesn’t everyone need sleep? Squeeks isn’t so convinced. Are you telling her that horse is sleeping standing up? Nay, he can’t be! Or what about the ducks? They can’t possibly be sleeping in a lake. Or are they? Stay awake to find out!
Curriculum: All animals need sleep, but what sleep looks like can vary greatly from animal to animal.
May 17 at 8pm on WITFK, May 18 at 7:30am on WITF, May 25 at 5:30pm on WITFK
Niagara Falls Next up on Nature Cat’s Nature Curiosity List: Niagara Falls. That’s right, the Niagara Falls, as in the three most famous waterfalls in the world of waterfalls. The gang can’t wait to set off on the exciting journey to the falls, but there’s one problem…Nature Cat won’t go anywhere near all – that – water. Oh no! Is he going to overcome his fear and fall in love with the falls? Or will he never be able to check off number three on his curiosity list? Onward and Niagara Fallsward?!
Curriculum: The Niagara River flows 36 miles from higher ground to lower ground, connecting two of the Great Lakes and passing over the spectacular Niagara Falls on its way.
Nature Plant During a rousing game of nature tag, Nature Cat runs out of energy. Oh no! Now he can’t play anymore. What’s he going to do? That’s simple — Daisy teaches Nature Cat that all he needs to do to gain more energy is eat. Nature Cat wishes he was more like a plant, because he wouldn’t have to worry about running out of energy or eating, but Daisy says that plants need energy too. Hold on. Are you telling me that plants can eat? That’s right, Daisy teaches the gang all about how plants make their own food through photosynthesis. Tally grow!
Curriculum: Plants use energy from the sun, through a process called photosynthesis, to produce the food they (and you) need to live.
May 17 at 8:30pm on WITFK, May 26 at 7:30am on WITF, May 27 at 5:30pm on WITFK
Strongest Show on Earth Creatures and critters, put your paws together for Harold Mole Hill’s Strongest Show on Earth. That’s right, folks, it’s that time when all the animals battle gravity in a special showdown to lift their own weight. Wow, that’s a ton! But when an unsuspected champion takes the stage, the gang learns a whole lot about a new animal culture. As it turns out, some little critters have to carry a lot of weight to keep things running smoothly. Who knew?
Curriculum: Everything weighs something! And ants can carry objects that weigh many times more than their own weight.
The Grand Mystery of the Grand Canyon Nature Cat and the gang are off on a nature walk to a park. But, hold on, this park doesn’t have… a slide! Or monkey bars! Well what kind of park is this then? Wait a minute, they’re at the Grand Canyon! Is that even a park!? It sure is, it’s a national park. This canyon is incredible! But the gang wants to know how it got SO big and SO wide? Ah, that, my friends is the grand mystery of the Grand Canyon. To find out, they must head deeper into the canyon. Onward and deeperward!
Curriculum: Visit the Grand Canyon and you will discover the amazing effects a single river can have on the Earth over many millions of years.
May 17 at 2:30pm on WITFK, May 28 at 7:30am on WITF, May 29 at 5:30pm on WITFK
Under Pressure Next up on Ronald’s Nature Curiosity list is…wait a sec, Ronald has his very own Nature Curiosity List? He sure does! But it can’t possibly be as nature-tastic as Nature Cat’s! Or can it? Well, first on his list is “what’s it like to see Old Faithful erupt at Yellowstone National Park?” The gang is excited to follow Ronald to the geyser, but there is a slight problem. He doesn’t know the way!
Curriculum: Like a tea kettle blowing its top, Earth has geysers that spout very hot water and steam from underground high into the air.
Rainy Day Nature Cat and the crew are ready to go outside and play, but there’s just one minor problem…it’s pouring rain. Oh no! What should they do? Well, thanks to a friendly robin, the gang learns that playing in the rain can actually be quite fun. Daisy, Hal and Squeeks strap on their rain gear, ready to explore the rainy day. But there is just one slight problem: Nature Cat can’t stand the rain. Uh oh, is he going to swallow his pride and put on a raincoat?
Curriculum: Exploring outside on a rainy day opens up a new world of sights, smells and fun.
WITFK is the PBS Kids 24/7 channel which can be found here:
Over the air: 33.2 (may require you to “re-scan” your television if it’s not in your current lineup)