State tourism show ‘discovers’ River Falls
Tourists often contact “Discover Wisconsin” to ask about what host Mariah Haberman calls “hidden gems” -- places they may not know they’d love to visit.
One of the goals of the show Discover Wisconsin out of Madison is to show off those “hidden gems” and help people find them.
This year, “Discover Wisconsin” is working to create a half-hour episode showing viewers what River Falls has to offer.
“Discover Wisconsin” discovered River Falls when Judy Berg, Chamber of Commerce tourism sales marketing manager, stopped by the Discover Wisconsin booth at the Wisconsin Department of Tourism Conference.
The River Falls Chamber of Commerce formed a four-way partnership with the city of River Falls, UW-River Falls and the River Falls School District to bring Discover Wisconsin to River Falls.
“It’s an amazing opportunity to be able to showcase many of the great things that are taking place in River Falls,” said Chamber CEO Chris Blasius.
After the chamber, city, UWRF, and school district decided to work together with Discover Wisconsin, the groups held a meeting to plan out the episode.
“For all of our clients, we work with the partner, and decide what’s going to get people excited about the area,” said managing producer and cinematographer Chad Diedrick.
The River Falls episode will try to give viewers an idea of all the activities and events River Falls has to offer.
The Discover Wisconsin crew’s first visit to River Falls was during the Blues Festival -- April 4-6.
They returned for the first weekend in August for footage of places to shop, eat and gather downtown, including: Riverwalk Square, Funktion Junktion, River Walk Mercantile, historic buildings, including the Flour Mill, and well-known sights such as the mural on Riverwalk Art and Antiques, and The Swinging Bridge, as well as Bo’s and Mine, The West Wind and the South Fork.
The crew also shot footage for segments on River Falls activities like Fighting Fish baseball games (though the actual game the crew was to film got rained out), We Bike River Falls, and the Border Battle Crossing bike race.
And, of course, much of what’s been filmed revolves around the Kinni. Haberman and her fellow host Collin Geraghty kayaked and went fly fishing, and interviewed local kayaking and fly fishing experts, as well as representatives for other local events and activities.
The River Falls episode on Discover Wisconsin is expected to be shown in March 2015.
Discover Wisconsin has been broadcasting for about 27 years and is shown across eight states in the Midwest.
It is the longest-running tourism show in the country. In the River Falls area, it airs on Eau Claire’s WKOW TV 18, and on Fox Sports North.