Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Sights Sounds and Smells of Christmas

Are you nostolgic for Christmases of the past? Check out this event, co-sponsored with the Augusta Area Senior and Community center. December 17th at 10:30 AM, at the Senior Center. (AMPL website viewers will have to click the link to see the flyer!)

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Upcoming Event!: 1953 National Plow Contest Review

In September of 1953, the population of Augusta swelled considerably during a 2-day event usually referred to as the National Plow Contest. With recorded numbers ranging between 60,000 to 100,000, hotels were booked solid in the surrounding areas, leading to local folk being asked to open their spare rooms to travelers who wished to be a part of the occasion. 
This exciting event not only quadrupled the size of our small city for a brief time, but we also welcomed many of the time’s well-known. Guests to the competition included then Wisconsin Governor Walter Kohler and popular music artists Homer & Jethro. Rumor has it that even President Eisenhower had been invited, but had to decline due to other engagements. 

This slice of history shouldn’t be forgotten; even if only as a reminder that rural cities such as our own, can make an impact on a larger scale. For two days, many years ago, our spot on the map was ‘the place’ to be; a fact that many still take pride in today. 

Join us on September 19th at 1 PM in the Augusta High School cafeteria for a review of the event with John Balliett and Don Strauch, participants in the events. Come listen to these community members share their memories and memorabilia of the events on the 63rd Anniversary of the National Plow Contest and Soil Conservation Days.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

What You Should Be Watching: New Shows for 2015-16

We all see the trailers and hype for the new shows that are starting. If you want the low down on every single new show that will be airing in Primetime, there's a list for that. You can also already look at what the full TV schedule will look like, so you can arrange your DVR accordingly.

With over 30 new shows coming in, across at least 6 networks, here are just a few of the one's we're most excited about on the Big Four. Obviously, these haven't aired yet so we don't have any library information for you, but links will lead to trailers if available. You can be sure that most of these shows, upon airing, will be available to watch on the network's website or Hulu.


Crowded: An empty-nest couple finds their nest rather full when both of their post-college daughters decide to come home to roost.

Emerald City: A gritty reimagining of the Wizard of Oz, 20-year-old Dorothy Gale is transported to the land of Oz, where an all-powerful wizard has forbidden magic and rules over many kingdoms.

Blindspot: A beautiful unknown woman covered in tattoos is found naked in New York City's Time Square. 

You can preview a selection of these and NBC's other upcoming shows on this video.


Supergirl: Arguably, the show with the most fanboy (and fangirl) hype of the season, this CBS drama will feature Kara Zor-El (Melissa Benoist), adopted by the Danver's family at age 12 as she begins to use her powers in secret for the good of humanity.

Life in Pieces: This comedy is told in "pieces" from the points of different family members. This is sure to please fans of shows like Parenthood and Modern Family. An all-star cast features big names like Dianne West, James Brolin, and Colin Hanks.

Grandfathered: John Stamos stars as life-long bachelor who finds out that not only is he father --he's also a grandfather. Josh Peck, of Drake and Josh, stars as his unknown son.

The Grinder: Rob Lowe stars as "the Grinder", a famous TV lawyer who is returning home to take over the family practice with his brother, played by Fred Savage.

The Muppets: The Muppets return to prime time with a mocumentary show that, for the first time ever, will explore the Muppets' personal lives and relationships, both at home and work, as well as romances, break-ups, achievements, disappointments, wants and desires. You may have already seen the news: Kermit and Miss Piggy are no longer an item!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

What You Should Be Watching: 2nd Season Renewals

As a regular TV watcher, nothing feels better than that calming relief of knowing that your new favorite show will be returning for another season. The 2014-15 season of television saw the axe come down on several long-running series as well as freshman shows. These are only a few of the well received shows that are returning, so if you're not sure about where your new favorite fell on the return list, you can check out this list from TVGuide.

Most of these shows will see a DVD release in the near future, but unless noted have not been added to the MORE catalog for holds yet. Keep an eye out for them in the future! Can't wait? Check Hulu, Netflix, or Amazon Instant (subscriptions may be required) to watch them now.

Marvel's: Agent Carter: (ABC) Haley Attwell reprised her roll from the Captain America film as Agent Peggy Carter. The year is 1946, and Peggy works as a secretary for the SSR. When friend Howard Stark (yes, that Howard Stark!) finds himself in a spot of trouble...facing charges of treason kind of trouble, Peggy teams up with his faithful butler Jarvis to attempt to clear his name. Fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel's Agent's of S.H.I.E.L.D, or any of the other ongoing comic book superhero shows will want to check out Agent Carter. DVD is set to release September 18th.

How to Get Away With Murder: (ABC) This law drama features Viola Davis as a university law professor, whose students are about to get far more than they bargained for in their Law 101 class. DVD is already available, but not yet in the catalog.

The Flash: (CW) After the success of Arrow, it's spin-off doing well is no surprise. Slightly more comedic and upbeat than the dark and foreboding aura of it's predecessor, Flash features Grant Gustin (you may recognize him from a short stint on Glee in season 3) as Barry. After being given superpowers after being stuck by lightening during an experiment gone-wrong, he teams up with a group of scientists to protect his city from others who have also been changed and chosen to use their powers for wrong. DVD release is set for Sept. 22nd. Click the link to place your hold now.

iZombie: (CW) Though based on a comic book, the two don't share much more than a title and was a CW summer season filler. The television show stars Rose McIver as Liv Moore, a functional zombie. After being turned during an accident at a boat party, Liv has been forced to make changes --such as leaving a promising path toward being a surgical doctor to being a medical examiner. But, the new life choices leave her plenty of time to team up with a local rookie cop to help solve crimes under the guise of being a psychic. Because that's easier to believe than "I'm a zombie who gets flashes of memories from the people whose brains I eat to maintain my sanity." The 13 episode season will be available on DVD Sept. 9th.

Empire: (FOX) Even if you haven't watched it, you've likely at least heard of Empire, which as been hailed as a show-to-watch from it's premier. When the head of the Lyon family, Lucious Lyon is diagnosed with the neurodegenerative disease ALS, he must to choose one of his three sons to take over his music empire when he dies. Meanwhile, his ex-wife and co-founder Cookie has been released from a long prison stint and is looking to reclaim her seat in the business. Available on DVD September 15th.

Gotham: (FOX) Set in the world of pre-Batman Gotham, the show focuses on future police commissioner James Gordon's struggle as a rookie cop. Familiar characters include Bruce Wayne, a young boy whose parents have just been shot in front of him, Selina Kyle, a street-rat girl who was a witness to the crime, Oswold Cobblepot, who is trying to find his place for a life of crime, and Edward Nygma, a socially awkward medical examiner. The first season of this drama will be available September 8th.

Check back tomorrow for our final list of shows --what will be brand new this fall! Get ready to set your DVRs!

*Bonus* These are some of our long-running favorites that have been renewed! These titles have seasons available in the MORE catalog.

Bob's Burgers: This animated comedy stars Bob Belcher and wife, Linda, and their 3 kids: Tina, lover of horses, zombies, and boys, Gene, musical genius (if keyboard fart noises can be considered genius) and Louise, the bunny-eared budding sociopath who loves her family a lot more than she might let on. Together, they run Bob's Burgers where the food is really great but life always seems to get in the way of business. Bob's Burgers will be starting it's 6th season, on FOX.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Consider this Andy Samberg comedy to do for the cop genre what Scrubs did for the medical drama. The 99th Precinct is a collection of the best, brightest, and...well, quirkiest cops you'll ever meet. They get the job done, but not always the way you expect them to.  This show will be entering it's 3rd season on FOX.

The Goldbergs: If you loved the 80's, do I have a show for you! Every episode takes place in "1980-something", highlighting the best, the worst, and the most embarrassing parts of the decade from the eyes of young Adam Goldberg. Narrated by Patton Oswald and inspired heavily by creator/producer Adam Goldberg's life, this comedy is sure to please; whether you're an 80's survivor or not. The Goldbergs will be entering their 3rd season, this fall on ABC.

The Middle: This family comedy starring Patricia Heaton (Everyone Loves Raymond) and Neil Flynn (Scrubs) focuses on the Heck family of five --just trying to squeak out a living in the Indiana midwest. And, when your oldest son thinks he's god's gift to women, your daughter might was well be invisible even though she tries her hardest to be heard, and your youngest is usually lost in a fictional world with his nose in a book...life can be...well, interesting. The Middle, on ABC, will be going into it's 7th season.

Once Upon a Time: This fairy-tale based drama will be entering it's 5th season this fall on ABC. The first season begins with Emma Swan's son, whom she had given up for adoption 10 years before, finding her and bringing her to the unusual town of Storybrooke, Maine. After deciding to stay, Emma is drawn into the adventure of a lifetime and tasked with breaking a curse placed on the inhabitants of Storybrooke by the evil queen Regina.

The 100: This dystopian sci-fi inspired drama from CW is starting it's 3rd season. A group of 100 teenage miscreants are formidably deployed to Earth to discover whether it is habitable, 97 years after a nuclear war had devastated the planet. The series is based on a series of books, also entitled The 100, by Kass Morgan.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

We will be saying goodbye to Cassie

For those of you who haven't heard yet, Cassie has accepted a position with the Eau Claire School District and will be leaving us next month.  While we are excited for Cassie and this new step she is taking, we are sad to lose her and nervous to find someone to fill the shoes she is leaving behind. Know that you have time yet to visit with Cassie, her last day is Friday,Sept. 11, and we will be having an open house for Cassie on her last day from 1--3 pm.

What You Should Be Watching: One Season Wonders

Most people are well acquainted with a One Season Wonder. Fan-favorites like the short-lived sci-fi series 'Firefly' or 1999's homage to 80's teen angst, 'Freaks and Geeks' are still talked about to this day. And the 2014-15 TV season was no stranger to shows that were given an early axe.

Unfortunately, while these shows will likely be released on DVD in the near future, they aren't there quite yet, so you'll have to settle for watching on Hulu (plus account may be needed), or crossing your fingers for them to appear on Netflix. Some shows may also still be housed on their network's website, but you'll have to check that. Links provided will direct to YouTube trailers or episode clips.

A to Z: This NBC romantic dramedy starred Cristin Milioti, better known as "the mother" from the last season of CBS's How I Met Your Mother as Zelda. The show chronicles her relationship with Andrew, which lasts for eight months, three weeks, five days, and one hour.

Backstrom: This show from FOX pegged me as being the cop drama for House fans. Rainn Wilson, of The Office fame, plays a disgruntled cop who loves solving crime --but hates basically everything else --including himself.

Constantine: Based on the DC comic "Hellblazer", Constantine wasn't necessarily a spin-off of the movie by the same name (starring Keanu Reeves), but features the same character John Constantine as a man who is dealing with his faith while protecting humanity from the forces of darkness. The cancellation came as no surprise as many fans lament any "good" show on NBC being doomed, but Matt Ryan will be reprising his role on the 2015-16 season of Arrow for one episode.

Forever: Henry Morgan (Ioan Guffudd) cannot die. Literally. Now over 200 years old, Morgan is in New York city working as a medical examiner, trying to unlock the forces behind his cursed immortality. The story seems unique, but also reminiscent of Captain Jack Harkness of Doctor Who and Torchwood.

Check back tomorrow for a look at some favorite Second Season Renewals to catch up on before the new season starts!

Monday, August 17, 2015

What You Should be Watching: Shows Ended/ing in 2015

Last week, we had a scheduled program on what you should be watching --TV wise. Say what you will about the 'ol "idiot box", but television programming has taken a turn for the better. Sure, it's still full of reality television (19 seasons of the Bachelor!) but there are so many more wonders to be found.  Witty comedies like the Goldbergs that will bring back an 80's flashback. Animation in primetime has finally found success with Bob's Burgers. And of course, your not-so-standard dramatic fairs of Once Upon a Time, The Walking Dead, or Pretty Little Liars --just to name a few.

Over the next week, we'll be posting our selections in various categories for your enjoyment. Today's selection are shows that have come to their conclusion after the 2014-15 season, which means it's a great time to queue them up on Netflix (if available) or place a hold on them in MORE catalog for a series binge watch. The following are just a few hand-picked favorites that you may have missed, but have heard everyone talking about. (Links will lead to the MORE catalog, first season, if available)

Boardwalk Empire: This HBO show, starred Steve Buscemi crooked politician, Nucky Thompson, in Atlantic City, NJ during the prolific prohibition era of the 1920s. Thompson plays both sides of the law, keeping a tight grip on the seedy bootlegging industry. Now, the authorities have taken notice of his lavish lifestyle and are investigating. Lasting 5 seasons, this show is sure to please fans of shows like The Sopranos, The Wire, and Mad Men.

Downton Abbey: After 6 seasons, this popular BBC original is coming to a close. Aired in the US as part of PBS's Masterpiece Theater Programming, the finale date for this side of the pond isn't quite on the books yet. This regency-era drama starred the lights of Hugh Bonneville as the Earl of Grantham, Robert Crawley, who has lost his direct male heirs and now faces handing over his earldom to a distance family member. The drama captures the lives of not only the Crawley family but also those of their servants. Fans of Upstairs Downstairs, Call the Midwife, and The Good Wife will want to check this out.

 Justified: Timothy Olyphant stars as Raylan Givens is a U.S. Marshall, returning to his hometown after being reassigned. Based on novels by Elmore Leonard, Justified will resonate with fans of not only the crime drama (Homeland, Sons of Anarchy) but westerns (Deadwood) as well.  The show, originally on FX, aired six seasons.

Legend of Korra: This spin-off of Nickelodeon's Avatar: The Last Airbender features Korra, the newest Avatar, struggling to deal with Ang's legacy while also creating her own. Korra relies on her new friends and also her spiritual ties to find inner peace while both her worlds --ours and the spiritual, are in turmoil. Only a short 4 seasons, fans of the original series as well as shows like Gravity Falls, Steven Universe, or Doctor Who are sure to enjoy this quick binge.

Parenthood: This NBC show lasted 6 seasons and starred Peter Krause, Lauren Graham, and Craig T. Nelson. The Braverman clan is large and everyone has their different struggles --from empty nesting, raising a child with autism, find out you've been a deadbeat, to regular teenage angst. The show focuses on coming together with your family and supporting each other through your differences. A must-see for fans of Gilmore Girls, Brothers & Sisters, and The Fosters.

Parks and Recreation: Another NBC show, this one calling it quits at 7 seasons, featured SNL alum Amy Poehler. In mockumentary style, Parks and Rec looks at the inner-workings of the city government, laying out why it is you stand for hours at the DMV or why those potholes never seem to get fixed.  A great watch-a-like to The Office, Community, or Arrested Development.

White Collar: This USA show went on 6 seasons and stared Matt Bomer as Neal Caffery and Tom DeKay as Burke. Burke is an FBI agent working, working in "white collar crime" --of which Neal Caffery is well versed in. After finally being put behind bars for his many crimes, Burke's superiors strike a deal to let him out --if he works with them as a consultant. Similar to Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg's Fox and O'Hare series, fans of shows like Castle, Burn Notice, Chuck, and Bones are sure to enjoy.

*Bonus!* Shows that hit the block --but have been saved thanks to Streaming Services!

The Mindy Project: Fans were irate (to say the least) to find out Mindy Kaling's FOX show had hit the chopping block. Luckily, the romantic comedy featuring Kaling as a gynecologist at a Manhattan practice looking for love, was picked up by Hulu for a 4th season, allowing every fan to breath a little sigh of relief for the chance at closure.

Longmire This A&E show was also cancelled by it's network after three seasons, but has been picked up to start where it left off by streaming service Netflix. The rural cop drama is based on the popular Walt Longmire mystery series by Craig Johnson.

Check back tomorrow for a list of the 2014-15 "One Season Wonders"!