PBS and WKAR Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

Sep 17, 2014

Hispanic Heritage Awards ceremony to air on PBS and WKAR.

Carlos Vives
Credit Courtesy of GUILHERME MOLENTO

PBS and WKAR present THE HISPANIC HERITAGE AWARDS (2014), airing Monday, September 29, 2014, 10:00-11:00 p.m. on WKAR-HD. It's the first time PBS and WKAR will broadcast the awards ceremony. Filmed at the historic Warner Theater in Washington, DC, the program will honor recipients of the 27th annual Hispanic Heritage Awards. Honorees include celebrities, physicians, scientists, educators, innovators, public officials and community and business leaders selected by the Hispanic Heritage Foundation.

The awards, established by the White House in 1987 to commemorate the creation of Hispanic Heritage Month in the U.S., are considered among the highest honors for Latinos by Latinos and recognize notable Latinos who have had a positive impact on America and the world in various fields. The 2014 honorees include, Education: the Hayden High School Robotics Team; Sports: Bernie Williams; Leadership: Henry R. Munoz III; Vision: Zoe Saldaña; STEM: Rep. Ruben Hinojosa; Master of Arts: Pepe Aguilar; Legend: Carlos Vives; Special Recognition: 65th Infantry Regiment of the US Army "The Borinqueneers."

As part of Hispanic Heritage Month and year round, PBS and WKAR offer programs that chronicle the rich and varied history of Latinos, including: AMERICA BY THE NUMBERS WITH MARIA HINOJOSA, a series dedicated to examining the new American mainstream, airing Thursdays at 9 p.m. on WKAR World (23.2) beginning Oct. 2; segments of the second season of FINDING YOUR ROOTS, airing Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on WKAR-HD (23.1), September 23-November 25; the documentary LIFE ON THE LINE: COMING OF AGE BETWEEN TWO WORLDS (check local listings); and a selection of encore presentations.  
PBS' celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month extends beyond the broadcast and onto pbs.org, where Latino Public Broadcasting (LPB) will premiere new online short films. They include Frontera! Revolt and Rebellion on the Río Grande and the three-part New American Girls. An animated short from award-winning Chicano media artist John Jota Leaños, Frontera! tells the story of the Pueblo Revolt of 1680, a pan-Indian uprising that successfully expelled the Spanish occupiers from the Rio Grande region. New American Girls profiles three "DREAMers" — young adults brought to the U.S. as children by undocumented parents — who remain in limbo without a pathway to citizenship.

PBS viewers can also watch hours of free PBS and WKAR original programming online and on their own time via the PBS video player on video.wkar.org, that includes a special collection of new and PBS archive programs, including the six-part LATINO AMERICANS, profiles of Roberto Clemente and John Leguizamo, musical performances and an extended interview with Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

New Programming

Thursdays, October 2-30, 2014, 9:00 and 9:30 p.m. ET on WKAR World
Journalist Maria Hinojosa hosts the first national series dedicated to examining the new American mainstream — the growing numbers of African Americans, Asians, Latinos, mixed race, immigrants, women, youth and LGBTs whose growing purchasing power and influence over the arts, culture, commerce and the outcome of elections are affecting every aspect of contemporary life. Each program focuses on stories from a corner of the nation, amplified "by the numbers" — a distillation of the latest statistical information about population, health, education, quality of life and consumer trends.

Tuesdays, September 23-November 25, 2014, 8:00-9:00 p.m. ET on WKAR-HD
Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr. has been helping people identify relatives hidden for generations. Professor Gates employs a team of genealogists and the world's leading geneticists to uncover the origins of a diverse group of 30 guests. Gates treks through layers of ancestral history, uncovers secrets and surprises, and shares life-altering discoveries. Among his guests this season are Rebecca Lobo, who finds out that her Spanish ancestor fought side by side with a famous revolutionary and was forced to flee Spain; Chef Aaron Sanchez, who discovers that his family's treasured Mexican roots include people who were Spaniards, Africans and Native Americans; and Jessica Alba, an actress who proudly embraces her Mexican-American heritage but learns that she descends from Jewish and Mayan ancestors and King Louis XIV's official cartographer.

October 2014 various times on WKAR World (check listings in October)
This half-hour documentary follows a year in the life of 11-year-old Kimberly Torrez. Living steps from the border in Nogales, Mexico, Kimberly crosses each day to attend school just across the line in Arizona. Kimberly's unemployed father, stricken with Hepatitis C, needs a liver transplant; Kimberly's mother desperately awaits the visa that will allow her to live in the U.S. with her American children if her husband dies. A slice-of-life portrait told through Kimberly's eyes, the film illuminates the changing face of America through the story of this one family.