PBS KIDS to Premiere All-new One-hour NATURE CAT Special

Grounded in a Natural Science Curriculum, Special From PBS KIDS’ Newest Series Debuts Monday, January 18, Kicking Off a Week of New Episodes; Related Digital Content Will Also Be Available

On Monday, January 18, 2016PBS KIDS will premiere a one-hour special from its newest series NATURE CAT. The special will repeat throughout the week of January 18 and will be available free on both pbskids.org and the PBS KIDS Video App, which is accessible on a variety of mobile devices and platforms such as Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Xbox One and Chromecast. Additional new episodes from NATURE CAT will also debut throughout the week (check local listings). New related games, clips and full episodes will also be available on PBS KIDS’ digital platforms throughout the month.© 2015 Spiffy Entertainment, LLC

Grounded in a natural science curriculum, NATURE CAT, is designed to encourage children ages 3-8 to go outside and explore the outdoors, while learning about a variety of scientific topics along the way. The NATURE CAT special will include four 11-minute stories with Nature Cat (voiced by Saturday Night Live’s Taran Killam), along with his pals Squeeks the mouse (Kate McKinnon), Hal the dog (Bobby Moynihan) and Daisy, a pet rabbit (Kate Micucci, The Big Bang Theory), as they embark on action-packed adventures, perilous missions, nature investigations and “a-ha” discovery moments. In each story, the characters model age-appropriate reasoning skills and explore natural science concepts, such as the role seeds play in plants’ life cycles and the types of wildlife found in various environments.

When the weather turns colder in January, kids may be more reluctant to explore their surroundings, but with an all-new NATURE CAT special from PBS KIDS, their curiosity will be sparked to turn to outdoor adventures,” said Lesli Rotenberg, General Manager, Children’s Media, PBS. “PBS KIDS is proud to offer new, free, engaging media content across multiple platforms that will give kids a chance to recreate the adventures of Nature Cat and his friends and learn about the natural wonders that abound in their own backyard or local park.

Premieres Monday, January 18, 2016 (check local listings). Four all-new 11-minute stories are packed into a super special hour:

Stream and Shout” − Nature Cat goes to his Nature Curiosity List for inspiration and finds number 73: “Where do streams begin?” This seemingly simple question leads the gang on an action-packed adventure, as they follow the stream uphill, exploring new environments and meeting all sorts of friendly critters. When they finally find out where the stream begins, they are whoa-ho-ho amazed!

Curriculum: Streams start out as runoff from rain or snow and flow into larger and larger bodies of water, eventually reaching the ocean.

Hal’s Day Off − After a silly mishap leaves Hal alone in the big city (well, he does have his chew-toy Mr. Chewinsky with him), it’s up to Nature Cat, Squeeks and Daisy to make their way to the city and find Hal! Tally ho! Even though Hal is having so much fun sightseeing, he will need to get home somehow. When Nature Cat, Squeeks and Daisy can’t locate Hal, they turn for help to animals that they never even knew lived in the city!

Curriculum: Different kinds of wild animals can survive and even thrive in city neighborhoods.

Tally Ho! A Rainbow − After a rainstorm (Nature Cat is sure glad it’s over!), Daisy wants to capture a picture of a rainbow for her Granny Bunny, who just loves rainbows! But finding a rainbow is easier said than done, as the four friends trek all over in search of it!

Curriculum: Just after a rainstorm, when the sun comes out, you can stand with your back to it and look for a rainbow in the sky.

Travelin’ Seeds” − When Daisy finds a beautiful flower in her garden that she didn’t plant, it’s up to Nature Cat and his pals to find out where the flower came from. Their investigation leads them through the park and into the woods, where the clues show them that seeds can actually travel far distances and grow where they land. 

Curriculum: Some plants make seeds that will travel to new growing places to continue the plants’ cycle of life. Continue reading

Julie Andrews Returns as Host of “From Vienna: The New Year’s Celebration 2016,” Conducted by Mariss Jansons

Featuring the Vienna Boys’ Choir, On THIRTEEN’s Great Performances Friday, January 1 at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. ET on PBS

The Vienna Philharmonic And Soloists Of The Vienna State Ballet Return For The Beloved Annual Tradition Against The Joyful Backdrop Of The Scenic City

Stage and screen legend Julie Andrews returns for the seventh time to host the festive annual New Year’s celebration with the Vienna Philharmonic, under the direction of Mariss Jansons, from Vienna’s MusikvereinFrom Vienna: The New Year’s Celebration 2016, featuring the infectious melodies of the Strauss Family and their contemporaries, airs on Great Performances, Friday, January 1 at 2:30 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings) with an encore performance that evening at 7:30 p.m.

Vienna Philharmonic. Phot Credit: Terry Linke

Vienna Philharmonic. Photo Credit: Terry Linke

Maestro Jansons is returning for the third time to conduct the ever-popular concert. The Vienna Boys’ Choir and soloists of the Vienna State Ballet also return for the gala evening.

This is the largest worldwide event in classical music reaching millions of people annually through radio and television in over 80 countries. The Vienna Philharmonic’s traditional New Year’s program has showcased Viennese musical culture at the highest level, and since the first television broadcast in 1959, sent the world a New Year’s greeting in the spirit of hope, friendship and peace. (The telecast marks the 32nd broadcast of the event on PBS.)

The musical program is as follows:

Johann Strauss – “A Night in Venice” Overture

Eduard Strauss – Out of Control, Quick Polka

Josef Strauss – Music of the Spheres, Waltz

Johann Strauss – Singers Joy, French Polka (with Vienna Boys’ Choir)

Josef Strauss – On Holiday, Quick Polka (with Vienna Boys’ Choir)

Johann Strauss – “Princess Ninetta” – Entr’acte between Acts 2 and 3

Emil Waldteufel – España, Waltz (after Chabrier)

Johann Strauss, Sr. – Sighs Galop

Josef Strauss – The Dragonfly, Polka Mazur

Johann Strauss – Emperor Waltz

Johann Strauss – On the Hunt, Quick Polka

Johann Strauss – Double-time! Quick Polka –

Johann Strauss – On the Beautiful Blue Danube, Waltz

Johann Strauss, Sr. – Radetsky March

Julie Andrews’ role as host of these New Year’s broadcasts continues to be a cherished tradition for viewers and the beloved singer, actress, and author herself: “Vienna is a magical city…rich in culture and history. The glorious music it has brought to the world is a gift. I look forward to hosting another New Year’s celebration and sharing some of the incredible sights and sounds that are uniquely Vienna.

As is customary with these broadcasts, Ms. Andrews will travel from her home base in the Musikverein hall itself to visit multiple picturesque Vienna landmarks, including The Imperial Summer Palace of Schönbrunn, and The Kaiserloge in the Royal Enclosure at Austria’s Freudenau racetrack; The Winter Riding School in the Hofburg; the Imperial Carriage Museum; Vienna’s first public park, The Volksgarten; and the Volksgarten Club Disco (once Petro Corti’s Kaffeehaus where the Strausses performed); and the historic Tirolerhof farmhouse. Continue reading

MASTERPIECE and PBS Announce New “Sherlock” Special to Premiere on January 1

MASTERPIECE and PBS will premiere Sherlock: The Abominable Bride,” a 90-minute special, on Friday, January 1, 2016 on MASTERPIECE Mystery! on PBS at 9:00 p.m. ET, and simultaneously online at pbs.org/masterpiece. The special will have an encore broadcast on Sunday, January 10 at 10:00 p.m. ET. This is the first time that Sherlock” has premiered in the US and the United Kingdom on the same day.

MASTERPIECE “Sherlock: The Abonminable Bride” Picture Shows: John Watson (MARTIN FREEMAN), Sherlock Holmes (BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH) © Robert Viglasky/Hartswood Films and BBC Wales for BBC One and MASTERPIECE.

MASTERPIECE “Sherlock: The Abonminable Bride” Picture Shows: John Watson (MARTIN FREEMAN), Sherlock Holmes (BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH) © Robert Viglasky/Hartswood Films and BBC Wales for BBC One and MASTERPIECE.

Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game) and Martin Freeman (The Hobbit) return as Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson in the acclaimed modern retelling of Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic stories. But now our heroes find themselves in 1890s London. Beloved characters Mary Morstan (played by Amanda Abbington), Inspector Lestrade (Rupert Graves) and Mrs. Hudson (Una Stubbs) also turn up at 221b Baker Street. Sherlock: The Abominable Bride” is a 90-minute Sherlock” special.

Sherlock is a global phenomenon, engaging audiences from Berlin to Beijing, from Texas to Tokyo. The show has been sold to over 240 territories across the world, won 12 BAFTAs, 7 Emmys® and a prestigious Peabody Award as well as accolades at the Edinburgh TV Festival and the Television Critics Association in the U.S. Sherlock made its mark in U.S. pop-culture being one of only three British TV shows that have appeared on the cover of Entertainment Weekly.

In addition to the simultaneous premieres, BBC Worldwide North America has partnered with Fathom Events for the first theatrical screening event of Sherlock: The Abominable Bride, marking the debut of Cumberbatch and Freeman on the big screen in their iconic roles as Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson. The feature-length screening will premiere on Tuesday, January 5 and Wednesday, January 6, 2016 both at 7:30 p.m. local time. Theater audiences will experience 20 minutes of exclusive, additional footage – which will include a guided set tour of 221B Baker Street hosted by co-writer/executive producer Steven Moffat – prior to the feature, and a “making of” short film starring Cumberbatch, Freeman and many more immediately following. Sherlock is produced by Hartswood Films for BBC One and co-produced by MASTERPIECE.

Sherlock”, Season 4, will go into production in Spring 2016. Airdate TBD.

Sherlock” is produced by Hartswood Films for BBC One and co-produced by MASTERPIECE. It was created by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss, and inspired by the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Sherlock: The Abominable Bride” was co-written by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss. The executive producers are Beryl Vertue, Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat, Sue Vertue and Rebecca Eaton for MASTERPIECE.

Health Watch: Drug Overdose Deaths Hit Record Numbers In 2014, Over 47,000 Deaths Last Year, Mostly Due To Opioid Pain Relievers And Heroin

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, from 2000 to 2014 nearly half a million Americans died from drug overdoses. Opioid overdose deaths, including both opioid pain relievers and heroin, hit record levels in 2014, with an alarming 14 percent increase in just one year, according to new data published in the December 1 8th edition of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

The most commonly prescribed opioid pain relievers, those classified as natural or semi-synthetic opioids such as oxycodone and hydrocodone, continue to be involved in more overdose deaths than any other opioid type. These deaths increased by 9 percent (813 more deaths in 2014 than 2013).

Increases in prescription opioid pain reliever and heroin deaths are the biggest driver of the drug overdose epidemic. Deaths from heroin increased in 2014, continuing a sharp rise that has seen heroin overdoses triple since 2010. Deaths involving illicitly made fentanyl, a potent opioid often added to or sold as heroin, also are on the upswing.

CDC (PRNewsFoto/Centers for Disease Control)

CDC (PRNewsFoto/Centers for Disease Control)

The findings show that two distinct but intertwined trends are driving America’s overdose epidemic: a 15-year increase in deaths from prescription opioid pain reliever overdoses as a result of misuse and abuse, and a recent surge in illicit drug overdoses driven mainly by heroin. Both of these trends worsened in 2014.

More than six out of 10 drug overdose deaths in 2014 involved opioids, including opioid pain relievers and heroin. The largest increase in opioid overdose deaths involved synthetic opioids (not including methadone), which were involved in 5,500 deaths in 2014, nearly twice as many as the year before. Many of these overdoses are believed to involve illicitly-made fentanyl, a short-acting opioid.

In addition, heroin-related death rates increased 26 percent from 2013–2014, totaling 10,574 deaths in 2014. Past misuse of prescription opioids is the strongest risk factor for heroin initiation and use—especially among people who became dependent upon or abused prescription opioids in the past year. The increased availability of heroin, its relatively low price (compared to prescription opioids), and high purity appear to be major drivers of the upward trend in heroin use, overdoses, and deaths.

The increasing number of deaths from opioid overdose is alarming,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H.The opioid epidemic is devastating American families and communities. To curb these trends and save lives, we must help prevent addiction and provide support and treatment to those who suffer from opioid use disorders. This report also shows how important it is that law enforcement intensify efforts to reduce the availability of heroin, illegal fentanyl, and other illegal opioids.”

Drug overdose deaths are up in both men and women, in non-Hispanic whites and blacks, and in adults of nearly all ages. Rates of drug overdose deaths were highest among five states: West Virginia, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Kentucky, and Ohio. A map of drug overdose deaths by state (2013 and 2014) is available at http://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/data/statedeaths.html.

HOW TO STOP THE EPIDEMIC

The new findings point to four ways to prevent overdose deaths:

Limit initiation into opioid misuse and addiction. Opioid pain reliever prescribing has quadrupled since 1999. Providing health care professionals with additional tools and information—including safer guidelines for prescribing these drugs—can help them make more informed prescribing decisions.

Expand access to evidence-based substance use disorder treatment—including Medication-Assisted Treatment—for people who suffer from opioid use disorder.

Protect people with opioid use disorder by expanding access and use of naloxone—a critical drug that can reverse the symptoms of an opioid overdose and save lives.

State and local public health agencies, medical examiners and coroners, and law enforcement agencies must work together to improve detection of and response to illicit opioid overdose outbreaks to address this emerging threat to public health and safety.

The CDC works with states, communities, and prescribers to prevent opioid misuse and overdose by tracking and monitoring the epidemic and helping states scale up effective programs. CDC also improves patient safety by equipping health care providers with data, tools, and guidance so they can make informed treatment decisions. Learn more at www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose.

Secretary Burwell has made addressing opioid abuse, dependence, and overdose a priority and work is underway within HHS on this important issue. The evidence-based initiative focuses on three promising areas: informing opioid prescribing practices, increasing the use of naloxone, and using Medication-Assisted Treatment to move people out of opioid addiction.

These efforts build on work that began in 2010, when the President released his first National Drug Control Strategy, which emphasized the need for action to address opioid use disorders and overdose, while ensuring that individuals with pain receive safe, effective treatment. The next year, the White House released its national Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Plan to outline goals for addressing prescription drug misuse and overdose. Since then, the Administration has supported and expanded community-based efforts to prevent drug use, pursue “smart on crime” approaches to drug enforcement, improve prescribing practices for pain medication, increase access to treatment, work to reduce overdose deaths, and support the millions of Americans in recovery.

The CDC works 24/7 saving lives and protecting people from health threats to have a more secure nation.  Whether these threats are chronic or acute, manmade or natural, human error or deliberate attack, global or domestic, CDC is the U.S. health protection agency.


Grand Opening Of New Quicksilver Gondola Makes Vail Resorts, Inc.’s Park City Mountain Resort The Largest Ski Resort In The United States

Park City celebrated the much anticipated grand opening of the new Quicksilver Gondola and Miners Camp Restaurant, making history as the largest ski resort in the United States. Rob Katz, chairman and CEO of Vail Resorts and Bill Rock, chief operating officer of Park City were on hand for the celebration, joining community leaders and resort guests for a ceremonial ribbon cutting and champagne smash in front of Quicksilver.

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Park City Mountain Resort, the largest resort in the United States, is located in the heart of Park City, Utah, only a 35-minute drive from Salt Lake City International Airport, bustles with activities year-round with two distinct base areas, nine hotels, thrilling family adventures, and more than two dozen restaurants. In the summer of 2015, Park City completed the largest resort improvement project in the history of American skiing – boasting more than 7,300 acres of terrain, a brand new eight-passenger gondola, new restaurants, and more. More information at http://parkcitymountain.com.

Hanging Cabins - Quicksilver

Hanging Cabins – Quicksilver

Hanging Cabins - Quicksilver

Hanging Cabins – Quicksilver

On this historic day for our company, the debut of the Quicksilver Gondola connecting the two mountains and Miners Camp restaurant brings to life one of the most ambitious capital projects undertaken at any resort in industry history,” said Katz. “Bill Rock and his team have delivered on their promise to create an experience of a lifetime at Park City and we hope all of our guests enjoy everything that this world-class mountain and iconic mountain town have to offer.”

Construction on Quicksilver and Miners Camp began in the summer of 2015 as part of a $50 million improvements campaign to connect Park City and neighboring Canyons Resort. Now, a quick, 8 1/2 minute ride on Quicksilver is all that separates guests from experiencing hundreds of trails across Park City and Canyons Village.

Quicksilver Gondola Cabins

Quicksilver Gondola Cabins

Miners Camp

Miners Camp

Miners Camp

Miners Camp

Miners Camp

Miners Camp

Park City is one of the most spectacular places on Earth and now, for the first time ever, our guests will have unprecedented access to over 300 trails, 41 lifts and 7,300 acres of skiable terrain across one Park City,” said Rock. “Quicksilver, Miners Camp and the $50 million in capital improvements across the resort will completely transform the guest experience at Park City. We are thrilled to debut these projects in time for the Christmas holiday.”

Miners Camp, located at the base of the Silverlode Lift, replaces the old Snow Hut and offers guests a cozy retreat from the slopes. The new on-mountain restaurant features 500 indoor seats and a fresh menu highlighted by local ingredients, daily specials, handmade flatbread pizzas, Mediterranean dishes and local drafts on tap.

In addition to Quicksilver and Miners Camp, guests will also find additional snowmaking across the resort, two new trails off of Pinecone Ridge and major upgrades to the King Con and Motherlode lifts. All improvement projects will debut this December.

Miners Camp Grand Opening Reception

Miners Camp Grand Opening Reception

Miners Camp Ribbon Cutting

Miners Camp Ribbon Cutting

Quicksilver Champagne Smash

Quicksilver Champagne Smash

Vail Resorts, Inc., through its subsidiaries, is the leading global mountain resort operator. The Company’s subsidiaries operate nine world-class mountain resorts and two urban ski areas, including Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Perisher, Australia; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan. The Company owns and/or manages a collection of casually elegant hotels under the RockResorts brand, as well as the Grand Teton Lodge Company in Jackson Hole, Wyo.

For more information on the $50 million resort improvement projects at Park City, click here.