And best believe, they want you too.
Nestled back in an unassuming, run-of-the-mill warehouse space on Industrial Road in Wainscott is Local TV Studios, known as LTV for short, the South Fork’s public television access broadcaster.
Since its inception about 40 years ago, LTV acts as what executive director Michael Clark calls a public educational and government, or PEG, station that reaches residents from Montauk to Quogue. Most East Enders think of it as where town government and school board meetings are shown around the clock on Altice’s (that’s Cablevision for anyone over the age of 25) channel 22, but it’s within other public access efforts — predominantly broadcasted on channel 20 — where LTV is really making a difference.
Many of the studio’s public access programs are filmed and produced onsite by locals and visitors alike, delivering content that showcases community news, with a special knack for depicting daily life on the South Fork.
“It’s a communication vehicle for people on the East End to get their message out,” Clark says of LTV. “Our goal is to increase visibility, keeping the balance with what’s going on in the community.”
For decades, Clark’s had a vested interest in the local community, in the past appearing as both a guest and producer of several episodes at LTV when he was owner of the former Crossroads Music, a record store in Amagansett. He came on as executive director for LTV in October 2019, just before the pandemic, and has been working on an awareness campaign for the studio ever since.
“We weren’t as diverse in the beginning as we are now,” he says. “We’re really trying to get more people in the building, so us acting more as a community center, having events here, etc., is a great way to do it.”
Along with associate producer Josh Gladstone (the former artistic director at Guild Hall) and chief broadcast engineer Jason Nower, Clark and his team offer diverse, unique and interesting events at least once a week at the Wainscott location. This past Saturday, it was a day-long celebration of indigenous people, complete with a fashion show and film screening. Next week, there’s a two-day Juneteenth celebration scheduled, with a special remembrance for Harry Belafonte. Mambo Loco performs on Saturday, July 1, “Celebrating Black Culture in the East End” is on Friday, July 7 and sitar player Ustad Shafaat Khan plays on Sunday, July 9, in conjunction with Pollock-Krasner House. The ongoing, six-part series, “American Songbook,” continues in August, featuring cabaret performers bringing their New York City style to the Hamptons, and the Hamptons Festival of Music comes to LTV in September.
With its bare bones staff (five full-time employees, 13 employees in total), the non-profit churns out dozens of broadcasts each day on its non-government channel (channel 20), most of which feature locals showcasing their respective messages, like “AirHamptons with Bridget & Bill”, a casual, hour-long music/talk show with celebrity guests and collaboration between LTV and WLIW-FM, or “Café with Sandra K,” a talk show highlighting local personalities from across the East End. Anyone and everyone are welcome to film a program at the studio and/or submit finished content for airing. Click here for a list of ongoing series at LTV. For a full list of requirements to broadcast your content, click here.
LTV houses seven studios in total, with most available for the public to rent timeslots. All are complete with state-of-the-art equipment allowing endless possibilities for content creation. Versatile and varying in size, studio offerings include a small, soundproof studio perfect for recording podcasts, while another has a multi-functional set that can simultaneously host musical duos as well as roundtable discussions.
Just down the hall there’s studio 3, named for LTV founder Frances Ann Dougherty, a one-of-a-kind space here on the East End in terms of its size, with its 40-foot-high ceilings, 39-foot by 18-foot white wall, flexible (or removable) stage, and 3,750 square foot space that seats 200 people comfortably. Additionally, LTV is home to a full-on kitchen studio, a set with all the basics for a cooking show, complete with a convection oven, microwave, full size refrigerator with bottom freezer, plenty of utensils, and a five-burner electric range. It features counter space perfect for casual chatting segments.
“Our focus is about bringing some name people into the mix, sure, but more importantly, it’s about who is doing these things at the local level,” Clark says. “It’s all kind of full circle.”
LTV Studios is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m and is located at 75 Industrial Road in Wainscott. For more information, email [email protected] or call 631-537-2777.