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Posts Tagged ‘Huell Howser’

Fans Say Farewell at Sunset to the Late, Great Huell Howser

If you want to end your hump day with a smile, click on through to the first photo adorning the top of Nita Lelyveld‘s wonderful LA Times summary of yesterday afternoon’s Griffith Park Observatory tribute to the late Huell Howser. Taken by Brian van der Brug, it shows rows of people gathered on a hill, with the Hollywood sign in the background. Best thing about the pic? There was nothing Hollywood about the man being honored.

Lelyveld writes that some of those who made the Griffith Park pilgrimage were from faraway California small towns that Howser had covered. Others had equally fantastic connections to the roving KCET folk hero:

Lynne Green, 90, of Woodland Hills held court in high style in the first row of folding white seats, wearing a jaunty red hat decorated with a red feather and telling everyone she met about how, after she’d signed up at 80 for Buddy Powell‘s commercial acting class for seniors, Howser came to do a show on the class and “made me one of his featured speakers.”

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KCET Exec’s Collaboration with Huell Howser Ends in a Dream

The best remembrances of the late Huell Howser are the ones that remind this Tennessean had not a single thing to regret, no missed opportunities to ponder. While Howser checked out far too early, it was on the wings of a bountiful and joyful life force.

KCET blog post shared by the station’s VP Bohdan Zachary is one such fitting tribute. There are great anecdotes about crossing Howser during a pledge drive and running into him years later at a popular Palm Springs Mexican restaurant. There’s also this startling memory from just a few days ago:

Huell appeared in my dream. Out of the blue, for no reason. I’d not watched his show for weeks nor thought about him. In my dream, I realized I was in New York City with Huell and he was asking me about the place I called home for a decade before moving to California. Huell had lived there for a bit as well. In the dream, Huell drew me into a conversation about the Manhattan I knew and loved. There were no short snappy soundbites. Just one continuous shot.

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BREAKING: Huell Howser Has Passed Away

This is the kind of scoop that no reporter likes to break.

Per some unnamed sources who spoke to OC Weekly editor Gustavo Arellano, beloved and recently KCET-retired broadcaster Huell Howser has passed away. From today’s late morning dispatch:

Howser has died, according to sources who spoke to the Weekly on condition of anonymity.

The news will come as a shock to his legions of fans, all of whom were puzzled when Howser announced his retirement late last year, as Howser still seemed to have the enthusiasm and energy that made him so easy to parody–and so beloved to millions of Californians.

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Zocálo Square Op Ed Pans for Huell Howser ‘Darkness’

We’re not buying it. Even though D.J. Waldie knows the background subject matter of California’s history a lot better than we do.

In an essay posted today at Zocálo Square, Waldie argues that there was an increasingly deep, dark undertow coursing beneath the prolific reporting of retiring KCET/PBS show host Huell Howser. It’s definitely a different kind of media send-off:

Howser played one of the “folk” as larger than life and cannily for profit (at least until he stopped, for reasons that are his own for now), but the insinuating glee with which he took on California had more purposes than the standard con… I don’t know if the joy was a pose, too, like the piety of the minister who continues to preach after his faith is dead. But it’s hard for me not to see the subversion ever present in Howser’s joyous demeanor.

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LA Media Catch Up to Huell Howser Retirement Story

A funny thing happened on the way to tonight’s flurry of items about the retirement of local PBS/KCET icon Huell Howser. A San Diego community newspaper website had the skinny last week.

Posted a couple of days before Thanksgiving, the scoopsandiego.com item slipped under the turkey radar. Which really is kind of apt given that it concerns a man whose entire M.O. is about eschewing the big flourish. From a 2009 LA Times profile that Robert Lloyd pulled from for today’s mini-appreciation:

“I don’t have an agent. I don’t have a manager, I don’t have a press agent, I don’t have a wardrobe guy, a makeup guy, a parking space, a dressing room. It’s basically me and a cameraman and an editor and a couple of guys in the office. I can go out between now and noon and do a full 30-minute show just talking to people on the street and have it on the air tonight. It’s an economic model that’s a production model, but it’s a model that I believe in philosophically as far as what the viewer should see…”

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Patch Hits South Pasadena, Press Club

In these times of journalistic layoffs and media conglomerate belt-tightening, the rapid, ongoing Southern California expansion of community news hub venture Patch.com seems almost surreal. Yesterday, after some last-minute technical hiccups, the AOL seed-funded enterprise turned on the newest of its area websites, South Pasadena Patch, the same day the L.A. Press Club announced that San Francisco-based Patch west coast editorial director Marcia Parker (pictured) will be flying down to address the organization’s annual meeting on Thursday, October 14th.

When a new Patch launches, one of the first orders of business for readers is to click on the biography page of the site’s local editor. In the case of South Pasadena Patch, the new hire is Sonia Narang. After receiving a Master’s in journalism from UC Berkeley, the California native honed her skills as an online video producer for PBS’ Frontline, NBC Nightly News, MSNBC.com and others.

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