BRISTOL, Va. (WJHL) – PBS Appalachia Virginia has partnered with Hard Rock Bristol to build a studio set for the program as part of the second phase of the soon-to-be Hard Rock Bristol hotel and resort.
PBS Appalachia is the nation’s first ever all-digital public TV station.
The casino is dedicating 4,000 square feet for the production studio and representatives of the station say it will consist of a television and podcast studio as well as a control room. Vice president and general manager of PBS Appalachia Julie Newman said the space will allow people to see the production in action.
“Any of our studio shows will be produced on location here in a glass-enclosed studio,” Newman said. “People who want to come by and see what we’re doing or watch live productions as they happen can come join us for that.”
The new studio will be built during the second phase of construction for the Bristol Hard Rock Casino and will be located in the shops and restaurant area. The programming will feature three shows; “French Magnolia Cooks”, “Hometown”, and “The Life of a Musician”.
“What’s different about our programming, is that it’s authentic because it’s told through the eyes of people who really know this area,” Newman said.
Newman said that with this local program series they can really dive into Southwest Virginia and tell authentic stories.
“We’re doing this is because we feel like Southwest Virginia is such a beautiful and unique community, a set of communities that isn’t reflected on television,” Newman said.
Allie Evangelista, property president for Hard Rock Bristol, said they decided to partner with PBS Appalachia because they both want to give back to the community.
“When I first met Julie, I realized the energy and dedication, the passion for what she does and for our region,” Evangelista said. “It’s a great opportunity for Hardrock Bristol to just partner with someone that is featuring our community and make something exciting for people to come see when they come visit us here at the the property.”
The studio is expected to be built by July of 2024 along with the second phase of Hard Rock Bristol Casino and Resort.
“This is going to be life changing even for our property,” Evangelista said. “We want to bring joy to people’s lives, and so it goes together perfect.”
PBS Appalachia will begin broadcasting Saturday June 10, viewers can tune in on any local cable provider or live stream the program at their website.