Discover stories behind ‘Places That Changed America’

Buckle your virtual seat belt this summer as Arizona PBS takes you to some of the most remarkable destinations in the U.S. in this year’s PBS Summer of Adventure.

On Tuesdays at 7 p.m., beginning July 10, host Geoffrey Baer takes viewers across the country to tell the stories behind legendary streets, monuments and man-made marvels that changed our country forever. Over the course of three episodes, we’ll celebrate those who have scoffed at the laws of nature and defied the naysayers – and sometimes even gravity – by undertaking fantastic feats of engineering.

We’ll discover how streets have connected the nation, divided communities and changed the way Americans live, work and shop. We’ll visit both little-known locations and learn surprising stories behind American icons. And we’ll uncover pivotal moments in the evolution of American monuments when daring artists found new ways to honor our history.

“Hosting this series was like a roller coaster ride of experience and emotion,” said Baer. “The monuments immersed me in triumphs and tragedies of every scale; the engineering marvels took me from thousands of feet in the air to deep underground, pondering the brilliance and hubris of humankind; and as for the streets, I explored them on foot and horseback, in a covered wagon and in an array of vintage vehicles. It left me in awe of the power of people to imagine and to create.”

It’s easy to take these modern marvels for granted with today’s easy access to roads, bridges and drinking water. But behind many of our daily conveniences was a clever engineer – and a remarkable story.

July 10

10 Streets That Changed America
Discover how streets and roads have connected the nation, divided communities, and changed the way Americans live, work, and shop. Geoffrey traces the 400-year evolution of New York’s Broadway, from Native American road to Dutch thoroughfare, from theater district to poster child for the “complete streets” movement of the future. Other influential streets include the Boston Post Road, St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans, Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles and more.

July 17

10 Monuments That Changed America
Explore the stories behind ten wholly-original American monuments and the historical moments that inspired them, from the Statue of Liberty to Mount Rushmore and from the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to the AIDS Quilt. The episode presents the often-contentious battles over the design of these monuments and the ongoing controversies over Confederate monuments throughout the South.

July 24

10 Modern Marvels That Changed America
Celebrates the visionary engineers who scoffed at the laws of nature, defied the naysayers — and sometimes even gravity — by undertaking amazing feats of engineering. Each story includes a fun physics lesson and a tale of human folly, from the Erie Canal to the Hoover Dam and from the Transcontinental Railroad to the Interstate Highway System.

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