Travel Channel Programming Highlights for February, 2013

If you're wondering about upcoming episodes of BIZARRE FOODS AMERICA, THE LAYOVER WITH ANTHONY BOURDAIN, HOTEL IMPOSSIBLE, BAGGAGE BATTLES, STREET EATS, FOOD PARADISE, GHOST ADVENTURES and more on The Travel Channel... come on by and check out what episode descriptions I have on tap, from the big press release below!



All times ET/PT unless otherwise noted.

All programs are rated TV G unless otherwise noted.

The marking “(wt)” designates a working title and may be subject to change.

SERIES PREMIERES -------------------------------------------



Premiering Tuesday, February 26 at 10:00PM & 10:30PM (Two Back-to-Back Episodes)

Only a handful of people can train with elite Army Rangers, scale trees with lumberjacks in the Tennessee Smoky Mountains and dive off cliffs in Hawaii.  Even fewer can do these things without legs.  But that’s never stopped Kevin Michael Connolly – an author, photographer and self-proclaimed thrill seeker that was born without legs.  Travel Channel’s new original series “Armed & Ready” follows Connolly as he creates new rigs to travel anywhere, conquer anything and push the limits of the world around him.  With his impressive arm strength, his skateboard, the help of backyard engineers and real scientists – and without a wheelchair or prosthetics – Connolly tackles adventure after adventure.


Tuesday, February 26   10:00PM   “Legless Lumberjack – Smoky Mountains, Tennessee”

Kevin Michael Connolly is in the Great Smoky Mountains. Not only does he strive to climb a 50-foot tree with lumberjacks, but he’s out to conquer Tennessean activities and sports including zorbing (rolling down a hill in a giant inflatable hamster ball), traversing the daunting Class 4 rapids of the Pigeon Forge River – solo – on a custom cataraft, and tossing razor sharp axes at a target that is 30-feet away.


Tuesday, February 26   10:30PM   “Death Defying Cliff Dive – Big Island, Hawaii”

Kevin Michael Connolly travels to the Big Island on a mission to attempt an epic 40-foot cliff dive – head first – into the Pacific Ocean. Although he trains with a world-champion cliff diver, he still needs to set aside his fear and actually make the leap himself…using only his arms. Along the way, he skateboards on hardened lava, hits the beach for some surfing, zip-lines 300 feet above the jungle to explore breathtaking waterfalls and shreds the ATV trails on Hawaii’s tallest mountain, Mauna Kea, with his one-of-a-kind motorized mountain board.


SEASON PREMIERES --------------------------------------------------




Premiering Monday, February 11 at 9:00PM

He’s back!  Andrew Zimmern, the two-time James Beard Award-winning TV personality, chef, food writer and culinary explorer, continues his quest across the United States exploring the bizarre foods and cultures in his own backyard.  This time, Zimmern’s adventures include sampling baked muskrat in Baltimore, deep-fried piglet testicles in Iowa and fermented fish eggs in Alaska.


Monday, February 11   9:00PM   “Washington D.C.”

Andrew Zimmern visits Washington, D.C., but instead of government and sightseeing tours, he's exploring the branches of the food scene in the nation's capital! From Salvadoran favorites, to food trucks that feed hordes of hungry federal workers, to taking a trip back into history to taste what our forefathers ate, the district is a melting pot of flavors, both old and new. Whether it's a blackened snakehead sandwich made in a boat on the Potomac, peanut butter paired with foie gras, or Scrapple at a neighborhood grill known for its soul food, Washington, D.C. is a place where historical favorites and new innovations come together to create a variety of unexpected tastes.


Monday, February 18   9:00PM   “Denver”

Denver may be a modern city, but Andrew Zimmern finds that you can still get a taste of the Wild West in the food! From ancient hunting methods like falconry, to immigrants cooking traditional foods with American twists, to an Adventurous Eater's Club with people open to tasting just about anything, the pioneer spirit is still strong when it comes to eating in the Mile High City. So whether it's deep fried Rocky Mountain oysters in a biker bar, pheasant cooked over an open flame, or ant larvae beignets in a fine restaurant, Denver is a goldmine of flavors from both yesterday and today!


Monday, February 25   9:00PM   “Iowa”

Andrew Zimmern finds there's a lot more than meat and potatoes on the table in Iowa! The cuisine in this Midwestern state is full of surprises, thanks to a combination of food pioneers and traditionalists trying to preserve the old ways. From a small town farmer trying to create the perfect pig, to a quaint café offering new twists on the daily special, to an immigrant community from Africa bringing the taste of their homeland, Iowa is home to a whole world of unexpected flavors! The menu ranges from heritage pork brains with spring onion kimchi to a stew made with a whole sheep's head.


SPECIALS -------------------------------------------------




Premiering Monday, February 4 at 10:00PM

Last season on “Hotel Impossible,” Anthony Melchiorri traveled around the country to help struggling, underperforming hotels get back on their feet. Have they taken his advice? Or are they stuck in their old ways?  From impressive room renovations to surprising staffing changes, join Melchiorri for a return to The Dude Rancher Lodge – Billings, MT; La Jolla Cove Suites – La Jolla, CA; The Purple Orchid Resort and Spa – Livermore, CA; Ocean Manor – Fort Lauderdale, FL; The New Yorker – Miami, FL; and The Dream Inn – Daytona Beach, FL.




Premiering Monday, February 11 at 8:00PM

From moose nose jelly in Alaska, to dogfish fetus in Boston and sheep intestines in Arizona, Andrew Zimmern has crossed the U.S. to find the most bizarre foods in America. Now fans get the chance to pick their favorites. With a list that includes foul smelling tropical fruits, strange raw foods, and surprising animal parts, Zimmern counts down the top 20 fan favorite bizarre foods moments and even admits to some of the foods that weren't his favorites!


ONGOING SERIES ------------------------------------------




Premiere Episodes Mondays at 9:00PM

Anthony Bourdain is a seasoned traveler who's hit up all corners of the globe many times over. More often than not, while passing through, he has time to kill in some of the world’s biggest hubs. So instead of sitting at the airport hotel, he sets out to explore each city in the short amount of time he has there. Season two of “The Layover with Anthony Bourdain” is a caffeinated, high-test, quick drill, “No Reservations.” The visually-arresting style conveys grit, energy and urgency. Constantly on the move, and only in town for a mere number of hours, Bourdain, and friends he connects with along the way, unleash an unpredictable story about a place, a people and their food.


Monday, February 4  9:00PM   “Seattle”

Seattle - for a long time now, one of the best and most interesting food scenes in America. Anthony Bourdain visits Melrose Market to sample Pacific Northwest cheeses at Calf & Kid. He meets up with Tom Douglas for oysters at Walrus and the Carpenter. And the crown jewel of his layover? Dinner with chefs Matt Dillon and Renee Erickson at Canlis -- a kitchen with over 60 years of tradition that knows how to do a "proper hunk of bleeding meat."




Premiere Episodes Mondays at 10:00PM

Hotel “fixer,” Anthony Melchiorri returns to turn struggling hotels into bustling tourist destinations.  Each episode features a hotel either not living up to its potential, or on the verge of closing.  Melchiorri assesses each property and identifies its biggest problems.  He then meets with the staff, from front desk receptionists to housekeeping to the owners themselves, to determine the key operation issues.  Joining Melchiorri on location are a variety of highly experienced designers including Blanche Garcia, Casey Noble and Alison Victoria, who will help transform key spaces in each hotel.  As in last season, Melchiorri has just days to convince the hotel staff and owners to let go of the reins, formulate a plan, revamp the hotel and re-motivate its staff.  For some hotel owners, this is their last hope.


Monday, February 11   10:00PM   “The Curve – Palm Springs, CA”

Anthony Melchiorri heads to beautiful Palm Springs, CA, known for its abundant sunshine, relaxing atmosphere and swanky, boutique hotels.  Can Melchiorri transform a 150-room former chain motel into a trendy boutique hotel in just four days for two slick real estate investors who want to be hoteliers? 


Monday, February 18   10:00PM   “Casa Verde – Puerto Rico”

Anthony Melchiorri travels overseas to the beautiful Rincon, Puerto Rico, the center of the island's surf scene.  Owner William E. Bonbright is overworked and under-qualified to take on all operations at the hotel, and guests primarily complain about the hotel's bar is too noisy at nights.  Can Melchiorri help William take control of the Casa Verde before he financially wipes out?




Premiere Episodes Tuesdays at 9:00PM

Calf Testicle Festivals in Oklahoma, Lobster Boat Races in Maine, Tall-Bike Jousting in Oregon… Americans will do just about anything to entertain themselves...and arts and entertainment reporter Geoff Edgers wants to know why we do the things we do in the name of fun. “Edge of America” is a thrilling, fast paced show that follows Edgers, as he investigates his way across the country in search of all-American fun.  Journey with Edgers, as he immerses himself in American subcultures and dives head first into the unexpected and bizarre world of entertainment found on the “Edge of America.”


Tuesday, February 5   9:00PM   “The Edge of Maine”

Geoff Edgers rips through Maine on a rugged outdoor adventure that includes sword fighting on the high seas like a pirate, racing the world’s faster lobster boat, and barely surviving lumberjack competition tests.


Tuesday, February 12   9:00PM   “The Edge of Florida”

Geoff Edgers dives into Florida on a wet and wild adventure including wrestling alligators, swimming with mermaids, and takes a beating from a team of roller-derby girls at the running of the bulls.


Tuesday, February 19   9:00PM   “The Edge of Arkansas”

For more information, please contact


Tuesday, February 26   9:00PM   “The Edge of Louisiana”

For more information, please contact




Premiere Episodes Wednesdays at 9:00PM

“Baggage Battles” provides a glimpse into the very profitable business of bidding, buying and reselling unclaimed property by following three teams of auction experts who travel to some of the most important auctions, where their bids are based on sight-unseen instincts.  Season two of “Baggage Battles” brings back the savvy auction experts viewers met in the first season:  Laurence and Sally Martin, a married couple who co-own Studio Antiques in El Segundo, California; Mark Meyer, a young entrepreneur in the auctioning business from Long Island, New York; and New York City’s Billy Leroy, owner of the iconic Billy’s Antiques and Props, one of the last eclectic props and antique stores.  These shrewd experts trust their keen eye for detail to find hidden treasures at the top auctions around the world including airport auctions, unclaimed freight and shipping auctions, police and seizure auctions, vehicular auctions and estate auctions.


Wednesday, February 6   9:00PM   “Eye for an Eye - Toronto”

Billy Leroy, Mark Meyer and married couple Laurence and Sally Martin head to Toronto's largest weekly auction, battling for the over one thousand items sold to a lively nighttime crowd of about 200. 


Wednesday, February 13   9:00PM   “Shreveport, LA”

Billy Leroy, Mark Meyer and married couple Laurence and Sally Martin head to Louisiana to attend a police auction. Anything found or seized by the Caddo Parish Sheriff's Department is up for grabs, including valuable sports memorabilia, rare musical instruments, and even high-tech spy equipment not normally put up for sale to the public.


Wednesday, February 20   9:00PM   “Toronto II”

Billy Leroy, Mark Meyer and married couple Laurence and Sally Martin head north of the American border to a non-descript warehouse in Canada, where 403 Auctions sells unclaimed items from airports, misguided freight, consignments, end-of-lines, overstock and surplus items.


Wednesday, February 27   9:00PM   “Louisiana Farm”

A trove of rare and valuable Americana antiques and collectibles were unearthed deep inside a Shreveport barn after a wealthy Louisiana collector passes away. Billy Leroy, Mark Meyer and married couple Laurence and Sally Martin head south to bid on items from the golden age of radio and turn-of-the-century oddities.




Premiere Episodes Wednesdays at 10:00PM

Food – it's the number-one reason people like to travel. And the best place to find the most authentic local food scene around the world is right on the streets! There is no better place to rub elbows with the locals and grab a bite that's fast, inexpensive and speaks to the culture. In some countries, street food represents a melting pot of traditions. In others, the street food hasn't changed in generations and harkens back to deep cultural roots. Enjoy cow tongue on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, stinky tofu in Taipei, water buffalo in New Delhi or the meat of armadillos in Colombia, it's always delicious and fascinating for visitors to learn about the people and their stories. “Street Eats” travels to Latin America, Africa, The Middle East, Asia and Europe to bring the street food experience to American viewers, who may never get the chance to taste it for themselves. We then take a look at the curbside cuisine in our own backyard, in six different U.S. cities and see the new face of street food at home.


Wednesday, February 6   10:00PM   “Europe”

Street foods are a longstanding tradition in Europe. In Paris, London, Barcelona, Prague and Sweden, tourists and locals can find everything from conventional comfort foods sold curbside to trendy upscale street treats on-the-go


Wednesday, February 13   10:00PM   “Africa”

Eating street foods in Africa and the Middle East immerses you in the local culture. Hospitality is a hallmark whether you're trying grilled goat organs in Morocco, fiery palm nut soup in Ghana or chili-laced falafel in Jordan.


Wednesday, February 20   10:00PM   “Asia”

In South Korea, Japan, Taipei, Singapore, Bali and India, Street Eats bring a mix of sweet, savory and spicy flavors, sometimes all in one dish! From crispy pigskin to octopus to grilled buffalo, it's a gastronomic adventure!


Wednesday, February 27   10:00PM   “USA”

Chorizo omelets, grilled teriyaki, lobster mac n' cheese are just some of the street foods catching on across the country. Food carts, trucks and counters are cooking up everything from international comfort foods to haute cuisine.




Premiere Episodes Wednesdays at 11:00PM

We're serving up hefty plates of the country's tastiest, most mouth-watering, and decadent meals. We're talking lip-smacking pizza, tasty deli entrees, boatloads of bacon, fresh seafood and finger-licking deep fried dishes – and that's only the beginning.  Fantastic food is more important to many travelers than museums, hotels and souvenirs, and we've compiled all the must-see spots across the country to have a one-of-a-kind dining experience.  So bring your appetite and your stretchy pants as we dive into a healthy portion of “Food Paradise!”


Wednesday, February 6  11:00PM  “Fried Chicken Paradise”

A bucketful of crispy, finger lickin’, fried chicken goodness, from fiery Memphis hot chicken, to a wild red velvet battered bird in San Francisco, to the original Kentucky Fried classic!

Wednesday, February 13  11:00PM  “Soul Food Paradise”

Serving up down home comfort food that’s good for the belly and the soul, from rib-sticking gravy-smothered oxtails in Houston, to crispy fried catfish in Memphis, to hot spicy Gumbo in New Orleans.

Wednesday, February 20  11:00PM  “Deli Paradise”

Wednesday, February 27  11:00PM  “Deep Fried Paradise 3”




Premiere Episodes Thursdays at 9:00PM

“Mysteries at the Museum” spans the country, exploring local archives, storefront collections and the hallowed halls of stately institutions, to uncover the objects and artifacts that reveal the nation’s hidden secrets.  Museum explorer and history enthusiast Don Wildman scours a range of museums in search of extraordinary relics at the heart of tales that shock and amaze.  From Springfield, Illinois’ Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, where a rusted metal chisel was once wielded in a daring plot to steal the remains of the beloved 16th President, to the Connecticut Air and Space Museum, where a replica of a primitive plane may rewrite the history of aviation, these are a few of the sites that celebrate our nation’s distinguished past.  Through gripping interviews, rich archival footage and arresting reenactments, “Mysteries at the Museum” brings to life the amazing artifacts from the center of the nation’s most notorious crimes and scandals, unexplained encounters, bizarre inventions, and the most enthralling events of all time.


Thursday, February 7  9:00PM  “Cleveland Tumor/Lions of Tsavo/Willamette Meteorite”

First, Don Wildman travels to the Mutter Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to examine a preserved mass of human tissue at the center of an American political scandal.  Then he heads to the Field Museum in Chicago, Illinois, which is home to a massive skull belonging to a beast that terrorized people on the African savannah. Wildman then travels to the Museum of Natural and Cultural History in Eugene, Oregon to look into a replica of a meteorite that was once part a creative and ingenious heist.




Premiere Episodes Fridays at 9:00PM

The "Ghost Adventures" crew — Zak Bagans, Nick Groff and Aaron Goodwin — is back to investigate the scariest, most notorious, haunted places in the world. The trio interviews eyewitnesses and historians at each location, arming themselves with the stories of the ghosts they later confront during their dusk-to-dawn lockdowns. Then they review and analyze their findings with some of the most-respected experts and specialists in the paranormal field. New locations include the Point Sur Lighthouse in Point Sur, California; the Black Moon Manor in Greenfield, Indiana; the Palmer House Hotel in Sauk Centre, Minnesota; and the Sedamsville Rectory in Cincinnati, Ohio, among others.


Friday, February 1  9:00PM  “SPECIAL EPISODE: Dungeons & Demons”

Zak Bagans, Nick Groff and Aaron Goodwin explore some of the most haunted locations that lie beneath the earth. Although these places are buried beneath the ground, the restless spirits refuse to be contained. The guys descend deep down to investigate the spirits of an infamous secret society, a city where subterranean human trafficking and torment occurred frequently just below the street-level, and an abandoned asylum where the spirit of an old patient still lingers. These unbelievable “Ghost Adventures” moments take place at the following haunted locations: Hell Fire Caves in West Wycombe, England; Sacramento Tunnels in Sacramento, CA; Pennhurst State School in Spring City, PA; Shanghai Tunnels in Portland, OR; Gettysburg Orphanage in Gettysburg, PA; Hill View Manor in New Castle, PA; and Rolling Hills Asylum in East Bethany, NY.


Friday, February 8  9:00PM   “SPECIAL EPISODE: Bewitched & Bothered”

Zak Bagans, Nick Groff and Aaron Goodwin showcase the locations where they have experienced their most intense moments when performing spiritual rituals. Through séances, libations, and voodoo practices, the guys open the gates to the spirit world and summon the voices of the past, resulting in a powerful connection to lost souls. When the guys dare an entity to show its face, the spirits prove to be unforgiving. These unbelievable Ghost Adventures moments take place at the following haunted locations: Poveglia Island - Poveglia, Italy; Maysville Slave House - Maysville, KY; Preston Castle - Ione, CA; Moon River Brewery - Savannah, GA; Magnolia Plantation - Natchitoches, LA; Fort Horsted - Kent, England; Central Unit Prison - Sugar Land, TX.


Friday, February 15  9:00PM  “SPECIAL EPISODE: Obsessions & Possessions”

Zak Bagans, Nick Groff and Aaron Goodwin travel to locations where the spirits develop powerful attachments to the people they've left behind. The guys meet people who are affected by the ghosts of those who passed away too soon, and the spirits have become a part of them. They visit the home of Gary Galka, a paranormal engineer who had a very personal journey into the paranormal, after the heartbreaking loss of his daughter Melissa. The guys also investigate a house where a violent demonic entity possessed a man, and its malevolent energy followed him home. Bagans, Groff and Goodwin hear all these stories, and it motivates them to connect with these spirits in order to bring closure to the living. These unbelievable Ghost Adventures moments take place at the following haunted locations: Ohio State Reformatory - Mansfield, OH; Linda Vista Hospital - Los Angeles, CA; Villisca Ax Murder House - Villisca, IA; Letchworth Village - Haverstraw, NY; The Galka Family - North Granby, CT; Ashmore Estates - Ashmore, IL; Moundsville Penitentiary - Moundsville, WV.


Friday, February 22  9:00PM   “New Orleans”

Zak Bagans, Nick Groff and Aaron Goodwin explore three locations that help give New Orleans its reputation for being the most haunted city in the US. They investigate the home of New Orleans' most renowned Voodoo Queen, Bloody Mary, The Haunted Mortuary, located in the middle of the historic cemetery district and a former bordello that now operates as May Baily's Pub. With three very haunted locations, it's no surprise this is one of Ghost Adventures most intense lockdowns yet. But it's when the guys visit the Lower 9th Ward and see the devastation left behind by Hurricane Katrina that they have their most profound moment.




Premiere Episodes Fridays at 10:00PM

They are a paranormal team like no other, combining their unique, eclectic and often-conflicting skills to solve unexplained paranormal phenomena in haunted locations across America. Our team approaches every case from their two specific areas of expertise: Steve DiSchiavi is a Homicide Detective and Amy Allan is a medium.  Each investigator’s methods and findings remain hidden from the other team member to preserve the integrity of their findings, until the shocking results are revealed to the homeowner in the compelling conclusion of each episode. DiSchiavi and Allan come together, with the homeowner, and all of the team’s findings gel into one undeniable – and often terrifying – conclusion.


Friday, February 1 10:00PM  “Never Alone - Forester, Michigan”

Steve DiSchiavi and Amy Allan investigate reports of terrifying paranormal encounters at a home in Forester, Michigan. DiSchiavi uncovers two deadly fires that devastated an entire town, while Allan tries to fight off a vicious entity that tries to take over her body. Their client, Chrystal, wants to fulfill her mother’s dream of making her home a bed & breakfast, but she’s too afraid to spend a night in the house.  She hears voices, sees things move, and her own daughter is too frightened to leave her bed.  During their separate investigations, DiSchiavi uncovers the tragic story of a heartbroken woman’s painful suicide and a fire that devastated an entire family, while Allan confronts a threatening manifestation that she fears could potentially harm Chrystal and her family.


Friday, February 8   10:00PM   “Forgotten - Bloomington, Illinois”

Steve DiSchiavi and Amy Allan investigate reports of horrifying paranormal encounters at a home in Bloomington, Illinois. Their frightened client, Diane, says that she’s seeing strange things, she’s been scratched, and that an entity told her she has only two years to live. Diane is desperate to stop the activity and believes that she and her disabled son’s lives are in danger.  In their separate, spellbinding investigations, DiSchiavi uncovers evidence of a deadly land dispute and hundreds of dead bodies buried on the property, while Allan encounters an eerie entity that crawls into bed with the living to torment them in their sleep.  Finally, the team unites to reveal their shocking findings in an effort to help this terrified family.

# # #