TU TV Reaches One Million ESPN2 Viewers

Tue, 11/16/1999

TU TV Reaches One Million ESPN2 Viewers

TU TV Reaches One Million ESPN2 Viewers

Audience Taking Advantage of Show's New Website, www.TUTV.org



11/17/1999 --  --  Trout Unlimited Television's (TUTV) ESPN2 series has hit the ground running in its second season, attracting a cumulative audience of one million viewers through its first five weeks, according to just-released Nielsen Media Research data. The national ratings research indicated that the popular fishing and conservation show has experienced a 30% increase in weekly viewers, while its Sunday audience has increased by almost 60% compared to the previous year.

TUTV viewers are also taking advantage of the show's new website, www.TUTV.org, to confirm broadcast times in their time zone and learn more about the rivers explored in each episode. Average visitors of the site spend at least 15 minutes browsing through the in-depth information on each of the locations where TUTV was filmed this year, detailed topographic maps, gear and fly recommendations, and photos. The site also features a comprehensive guide for beginning fly fishers and a shopping area where viewers can buy selected angling gear as used on TUTV.

TUTV features the best of TU's conservation work, presented in the context of great trout and salmon angling nationwide. Hosted by Tim Linehan-1995 Montana Guide of the Year and 1998 Orvis Outfitter of the Year-TUTV is the first outdoor program to combine blue-ribbon angling with a focus on the human-made threats to the fragile rivers that are home to America's wild trout and salmon.

"The viewers' response this year has been fantastic," said TUTV host Linehan. "Each episode generates calls from new and repeat viewers who are surprised to learn about environmental challenges in their own communities and want to know how they can help. We're also getting great ideas from viewers for next year's shows."

Already this season, TUTV episodes have featured world-class fly fishing in Alaska, California, Wisconsin, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. This week begins a two-part series in which Linehan takes on Wyoming's "Cutt Slam" challenge and starts his quest to catch all four of the state's native cutthroat trout. After Wyoming, TUTV, continuing through November and December, will take viewers to Maine, Washington, Oregon, Montana, and Arkansas. TUTV's eight remaining weekly episodes will continue airing through December 30, 1999, illustrating the vital connections among good fishing, clean rivers and a healthy environment.

In its debut season on ESPN2 last fall, TUTV recorded the largest audience ever for a first-year fishing show on ESPN2, drawing a total viewership of 3.7 million households over 13 weeks.

Trout Unlimited Television is produced by Barrett Productions and made possible by TU's "Conservation Partners" - a select group of corporations that understand the importance of protecting and restoring coldwater fisheries and their watersheds, and that underwrite TU's on-the-ground conservation efforts in addition to sponsoring the television program.

TU's "Conservation Partners" for 1999 are Glenmorangie Single Highland Malt Scotch Whisky through TU's Shared Streams watershed program, DLJ Direct on-line brokerage (www.DLJdirect.com), Ford Trucks, wader manufacturer Hodgman, Inc., and Sage Fly Rods.

Sponsors providing equipment and additional support include Abel Automatics (reels), Action Optics, Clackacraft Drift Boats, float tubes by Classic Accessories, and Clear Creek bags and rod cases.

Founded in 1959 in Grayling, MichiganyeTrout Unlimited is America's leading coldwater fisheries conservation organization. TU's 100,000 members in 500 local chapters nationwide are dedicated to the conservation, protection, and restoration of North America's trout and salmon and their watersheds.

[Editors please note: While TUTV generally airs Thursdays and Sundays on ESPN2, assigned broadcast times for TUTV vary considerably from week to week. Following are complete program descriptions and broadcast times. However, throughout the season, updated schedules will be posted as necessary at www.TUTV.org]

Date: 11/17/1999


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