Public Television: Season Nine
About Public Television: Season Nine
Roadtrip Nation: Season Nine follows the self-discovery journeys of Elliott, Brooklyn, and Nekeed, three recent college grads who are looking to define their own Roads in life. Starting in Portland, Maine, the Roadtrippers will travel across the country in Roadtrip Nation's Green RV to interview Leaders they admire and learn the steps they took to get to where they are today.
A new team of Roadtrippers is brought together by their desires to search for something bigger in life. Brooklyn, who left an unfulfilling job in New York City to move back in with her parents, hopes this Roadtrip will “jumpstart” her life. Elliott, a former high school teacher, gets out of the classroom to figure out his next step. Nekeed escaped a rough childhood in N.Y., where he lost a brother to gang violence. Now, as the first male in his family to graduate college, he wants to define his next steps in life. At the New Skete monastery in New York, they interview Brother Stavros, co-founder of the monastery who also works with its famous German Shepherd breeding program.
The team lands at the doorstep of the MIT Media Lab, where they speak with a graduate assistant in the robotics department. Next, they talk with two women who founded sOccket, a soccer ball that generates electricity, and the co-founder of Bamboo Bike Studio. The Roadtrippers also stop at the USA Shaolin Temple in New York City, where they meet founder Shi Yan Ming who is known for his super-human abilities—such as breaking rocks with his skull. They end the week with Nat Paynter, director of water programs at Charity Water.
Arriving in Philadelphia, the crew meets with Rosemarie Certo, the owner of Dock Street Brewing Co., where they get a taste of her award-winning beer and her passion for the craft. Next, the team travels to Chicago to speak with Grammy Award-winning children's folk singer Ella Jenkins, who teaches the Roadtrippers a song. The team also meets with Paolo Davanzo and Lisa Marr—a happy-go-lucky couple that shares their love for filmmaking by helping students learn the art through affordable film and media arts classes.
While in St. Louis, the team lets their imaginations run free at the City Museum, an architectural marvel and playground made out of found objects from the city. Afterward, they sit down with founder and creator Bob Cassilly to learn what inspired him. In Idaho, they speak with sought-after expedition photographer Jimmy Chin, who opens up about his fears on failing and the dangers of extreme missions. "Fear is healthy," he reminds the Roadtrippers.
After traveling more than 4,500 miles in 30 days, the Roadtrippers book a last-minute interview with Randii Wessen, an engineer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Los Angeles. Randii shares his story of constant determination—wisdom that resonates with Nekeed. The last interview ends with Laura Danly, curator at the Griffith Observatory. Laura shares her story of arduous schooling to land a job as a NASA astronomer—only to realize she’s happiest when she shares her astronomical knowledge with others. Ending their journey with a better sense of themselves and their futures, the team shares their final reflections and says their goodbyes.