'Across the Fence' celebrates 65 years

Published: Feb. 14, 2020 at 6:37 AM EST
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'Across the Fence,' the farm and home program produced by Channel 3 and the University of Vermont Extension, is turning 65-years-old.

The program is the oldest show of its kind in the entire country and is something producer Will Mikell says holds a special place for Vermonters.

"'Across the Fence' and television are synonymous in Vermont. They arrived at the same time. We all grew up together with it. Anybody under the age of 70 essentially grew up with 'Across the Fence,'" Mikell said.

The partnership between UVM and WCAX began with a lease agreement in 1954 for land on Mount Mansfield. That agreement has since expired but "Across the Fence" has continued.

Over the last six decades, the program has gone through some changes, different producers, different openings, different sets and different hosts including Fran Stoddard just this last year.

But Mikell, who has produced the program for nearly 20 years, says the mission of "Across the Fence" has stayed the same.

"The mission is still to tell wonderful stories about people, about places and about things in Vermont to share some element of who we are, how we got here. That, again, is part of the power of television," Mikell explained.

The 65th-anniversary show airs Feb. 14, right after the noon news.

Mikell says you can expect a look back at what "Across the Fence" has been, but also where it's going.

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