2013-03-28 / News

Kettlebottom partners with Coast Guard for behind-the-scenes action

60-second segments will air during ‘Outdoor Pursuits’
By Ken Shane

A Jamestown-based production company interviews members of the United States Coast Guard. Footage is used to create 60-second segments that can be seen during one of Kettlebottom’s featured programs. 
Photos courtesy of kettlebottom productions A Jamestown-based production company interviews members of the United States Coast Guard. Footage is used to create 60-second segments that can be seen during one of Kettlebottom’s featured programs. Photos courtesy of kettlebottom productions Kettlebottom, a Jamestownbased production company, has starting filming United States Coast Guard facilities and personnel for their weekly adventure series, “Kettlebottom Outdoor Pursuits.”

The 30-minute program appears on Cox Channel 5 (1005 for high definition). Eventually the episodes will appear on Fox throughout southern New England.

The 60-second segments are called the “Coast Guard Minute.” They will appear in each new episode of “Outdoor Pursuits.” According to Robb Roach of Kettlebottom, the company is excited about the new relationship with the Coast Guard.

“They did a lot of research on our company in advance because they let us get into sensitive areas,” he said. “They don’t want to let just anybody get into those areas.”

According to Roach, the Kettlebottom team visited with people of different ranks as well as different Coast Guard locations. They were able to see the operations and the boats, and to interview individuals of different ranks about navigation, boating safety and emergency response.

According to Hunter James of Kettlebottom, the Coast Guard has a motion picture and television division in Los Angeles. The primary goal of the unit is to educate the public about boating safety. A lot of that involves film production in coastal areas. Two programs featuring the Coast Guard activities – “Coast Guard Alaska” and “Coast Guard Florida” – are presently airing on the Weather Channel.

“We wanted to get involved in that,” James said. “Boating Safety Week is in the second week of May, and the Coast Guard promotes that heavily, especially in the Northeast. We got involved and did several segments with them on boating safety, navigation and inshore and offshore preparedness, particularly things that pertain to Narragansett Bay.”

Kettlebottom first approached the Coast Guard’s Boston office. From there the company was directed to the motion picture and television office in Los Angeles. It was there that the idea was eventually endorsed. The approval connected Kettlebottom with the Castle Hill station in Newport and the Point Judith station in Narragansett.

A segment was just filmed that features a tour of the Castle Hill facility, including the communication room and the great room, which is dedicated to Ida Lewis. The dedication doesn’t end there, however. The station’s adopted mascot is a dog also named Ida Lewis.

The Kettlebottom crew also got a tour of the boathouse, and the rare opportunity to accompany the Coast Guard on its new 45-foot response boat that was just delivered to Castle Hill.

“That was a really cool experience for the crew members,” James said.

A planned tour of the Point Judith station was delayed as a result of a storm in the area. According to James, there are ongoing discussions about including the Point Judith facility in the Kettlebottom series.

“We want to talk to them about having a recurring role in ‘Outdoor Pursuits,’ offering safety information and being a part of the series in that way,” James said.

James said that the each “Coast Guard Minute” segment will be different. As an example, in one segment Roach is given an extensive tour of the Castle Hill facility, including the lighthouse. In another segment offshore safety necessities like distress radio beacons, life jackets, life rafts, flares and buoys are covered.

During a navigation segment, a map of Narragansett Bay is reviewed in the navigation room at the Coast Guard House. A look at various instruments and basic navigational techniques are also included. Another segment looks at all of the assets that the Coast Guard has at Castle Hill, including a complete overview of the station’s 25-foot and 45-foot response boats and their capabilities.

A total of six segments will be shot this season and will appear in each 30-minute episode of “Outdoor Pursuits.”

“‘Kettlebottom Outdoor Pursuits’ is growing in popularity, and we’re also growing in networks,” Roach said.

To see the newest Kettlebottom shows, viewers have to be Cox subscribers. But the company has teamed up with WPRI to give Fox the shows that have already aired on the Ocean State Network.

The new episodes of “Kettlebottom Outdoor Pursuits” will begin airing on Cox in May. Each will include a “Coast Guard Minute.” The episodes that will be shown on Fox, beginning in April, will not include the “Coast Guard Minute” this year, but they will in the future. The Fox series will run for 13 weeks. The combined broadcasts will give approximately 8 million viewers access to the programming.

“Kettlebottom Outdoor Pursuits” is an outdoor adventure series primarily based in Rhode Island. Hunting and fishing are featured. The company also produces a program called “Brand X,” which features extreme sports like surfing, skating and snowmobiling.

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