A E T N Logo
Support The Programs You Love DONATE NOW

Behind the Scenes of "Champion Trees" With Kyle Waldrup

Posted on 14 Jun 2013

Arkansas's Champion Tree Magnolia in Texarkana, Ark. 

Hello, I'm Kyle Waldrup, AETN Production Assistant, and I'm glad to give you a behind the scenes look at our upcoming original documentary, "Champion Trees."

Producer Mark Wilcken captures a birds eye view of Jeffery and me at work. 

We're currently in the final stages of the filming process, and I'm becoming acquainted with the work that producer Mark Wilcken introduced you to earlier. One of the first things I've found is that you’re filming one of the biggest trees in Arkansas, you get to play with some of the biggest toys.

Our awesome cameraman, Jeffery James, breaks out the big guns (aka a jib crane) for the shoot. 

My time at AETN has been short so far, but undoubtedly sweet, as I get to work with some talented people, like producer Mark Wilcken and videographer Jeffrey James.  In the pictures below you can see Jeffrey James expertly manning our jib crane in order to grab a few sweeping shots of the reigning champ Magnolia, found in Texarkana, Ark. You’ll also see Hans Stiritz, our talented DP getting a few beauty shots with his DSLR.

Our DP, Hans, chats with a filmmaker in the making! 

And here's the jib crane in action:


We were originally slated for Fort Smith that day, but once Mark heard this tree was starting to bloom, our plans changed so we could shoot this amazing tree.  I think you’ll be pleased with the results when "Champion Trees" airs later this summer.

A closer look at those beautiful blooms we trekked out to see.


“Cooking on the Wild Side” — Aug. 2016
Whether you’re getting ready for a Labor Day Weekend cookout or looking for the perfect thing for dinner, don’t miss some of Phyllis Speers’ classic dishes! Find John-tested, audience-approved recipes for Donna’s Inside-Out Cake, Sam’s Larrupin BBQ Ribs, Phyl’s BBQ Rub, Homemade BBQ Sauce, Smoked Corn Pudding and Three Bean Salad after the Jump.


Arkansas and the American Dream
We’re all familiar with the American Dream — the idea that anyone in the United States can climb the economic ladder of opportunity — but is it still achievable? AETN continues to address poverty in the state with “A Deeper Look: The American Dream in Arkansas” and to survey the national landscape with “Dream On.” Learn more about these projects and a special night of programming after the jump.


Volunteers Like You
You can have fun, help others and support causes and organizations by sharing a bit of your spare time and volunteering! Learn how you (or your group) can help others — and yourself — by working with AETN Foundation.


Parents, PJs and Pies
Wear your PJs and join us for a fun-filled family event as we and our partners at Dropping Back in and Healthy Families of Faulkner and Conway Counties share education resources on Saturday, Aug. 20, from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.! “Parents, PJs and Pies” will feature a BBQ lunch, giveaways, fun activities and special “Llama Llama Red Pajama” gift bags.


“Back Road Barns” - Viewer Photos
Coming to AETN on Thursday, Aug. 25, “Back Road Barns” travels through rural Arkansas on a visual road trip to classic barns that have long been a part of our culture. See a preview of what you have to look forward to by scrolling through viewer photo submissions for a special segment of the AETN original film.