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Series Continues July 19, 2022, on PBS

The Series Takes Viewers Off the Beaten Path to Discover What Drives Our Passion for the Outdoors 


AMERICA OUTDOORS WITH BARATUNDE THURSTON, a new six-part travel and adventure series,premieres Tuesdays, July 5 – August 9, 9:00-10:00 p.m. on PBS, and the PBS Video app. Hosted by New York Times bestselling author (How to Be Black), podcaster (How to Citizen with Baratunde), and outdoor enthusiast Baratunde Thurston, the series follows him on an adventure-filled journey to explore the diverse array of regions across the U.S. and how those landscapes shape the way Americans work, play and interact with the outdoors.

From wilderness pilots flying “below the rim” in Idaho, to coal miners turned beekeepers in Appalachia, to Black surfers catching waves in Los Angeles, Baratunde introduces viewers to a vivid cast of characters whose outdoor lives are shaped by where they live.

As a warming climate changes where outdoor enthusiasts can go and Americans debate how wild spaces can be made more accessible to all, AMERICA OUTDOORS WITH BARATUNDE THURSTON reveals a deeper understanding of our passionate and complicated relationship with the natural world.

“We’re thrilled to join Baratunde as he takes us on a journey to America’s wild spaces,” said Bill Gardner, Vice President, Multiplatform Programming and Head of Development at PBS. “So much of our history and culture is tied to the outdoors, and Baratunde’s unique ability to connect with people takes viewers to some unexpected places to explore just how our relationship with the outdoors is deeper and more important than we might think.”

“We think viewers will be transported by this journey to discover our outdoor lives and culture,” said Michael Rosenfeld, Vice President, National Production at Twin Cities PBS and Executive Producer of the series. “As we traveled the country we discovered a wide range of attitudes towards the outdoors, but we also found some consistent themes—most importantly, a deeply held belief that being outside is essential to our wellbeing, and access to outdoor spaces is worth fighting for.”

“This show was so much more than I expected,” Baratunde Thurston said. “I got a chance to reconnect with the beautifully diverse people of this country on the common ground we all share. From Indigenous nations who were here before we became a nation, to multi-generation ranchers and watermen, to newly arrived refugees, this isn’t just a show about the outdoors. It’s a show about America. Oh, and the cinematography is just epic. Best selfies of my life for sure.”


man standing in mountains

Los Angeles: It’s a Vibe
Tuesday, July 19, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET 
Baratunde explores his adopted hometown to learn how Angelinos connect with the outdoors in their sprawling city. From kayakers saving a polluted river to Black surfers claiming their place on the waves, preserving access to outdoor LA is something worth fighting for.

Appalachia: A Different Way
Tuesday, July 26, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET 
Appalachia may seem like a place locked in time, but its people know a thing or two about change, especially when it comes to the outdoors. From a trail-blazing hiker to a 21st century forager, Baratunde meets the people driving a revolution in how we see and interact with nature.  

man and woman standing in forest

Tidewater: Homecoming
Tuesday, August 2, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET 
Along the coast of North Carolina, there is more to outdoor life than sun and surf. As he treks through a daunting swamp, soars above the dunes on a Wright Brothers glider, and tracks wild horses on the beach, Baratunde discovers how these outdoor environments were shaped by a surprising force: history.

Minnesota: A Better World
Tuesday, August 9, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET 
What does the wild mean to Americans today? To find out, Baratunde journeys into Minnesota’s Arrowhead Region, one of the last places where you can hike or paddle your way into the remote wilderness. From passionate birders to harvesters of wild rice, he encounters a fascinating cast of characters—and hears from them why wilderness means so much.

AMERICA OUTDOORS WITH BARATUNDE THURSTON will be available for streaming concurrent with broadcast on all station-branded PBS platforms, including and the PBS Video app, available on iOS, Android, Roku streaming devices, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Samsung Smart TV, Chromecast and VIZIO. For more information about PBS Passport, visit the PBS Passport FAQ website.