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KPBS will broadcast these holiday specials throughout the months of November, December and January. These broadcast dates are subject to change and more shows will be added to the listing, so check back often. Happy Holidays!


(Go to Radio)

VICIOUS: Holiday Special

Airs Sunday, Nov. 22 at 11 p.m. & Friday, Dec. 25, 2015 at 10:30 p.m. on KPBS TV

VICIOUS: Holiday Special Tease photo

Freddie (Ian McKellen) and Stuart (Derek Jacobi) host a holiday soiree in their small central London flat. Ash (Iwan Rheon), their young upstairs neighbor, has volunteered to cook the meal, their feisty best friend Violet (Frances de la Tour) is up to her old tricks, and a wicked game of Truth or Dare brings up hidden truths — and surprises as well.


Airs Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2015 at 8 p.m. on KPBS TV

AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: The Pilgrims Tease photo

“The Pilgrims,” a new film by Ric Burns narrated by celebrated actor Oliver Platt, will premiere on AMERICAN EXPERIENCE on PBS. Produced by WETA Washington, D.C. and Steeplechase Films, in association with the BBC and CTVC, this two-hour documentary endeavors to tell the true story of the Pilgrims, a small group of religious radicals whose determination to establish a separatist religious community planted the seeds for America’s founding.

Wild Kratts: A Creature Christmas

Airs Weekdays, Nov. 25 - 27, 2015 at 7 a.m. & Dec. 7, 18, 24 & 25 at 7 a.m. on KPBS TV

Wild Kratts: A Creature Christmas Tease photo

In this one-hour special, it's Christmas time and the Wild Kratts are taking a break from creature adventuring to celebrate. But when the Wild Kratts receive an alert that their favorite creatures are suddenly disappearing around the globe, their holiday party quickly turns into a rescue mission. Our heroes must race against time to thwart their greedy archrivals' most miserly scheme yet! Will they be able to travel to the ends of the earth and return their baby animal friends to their homes in time for the holidays? Find out on WILD KRATTS "A Creature Christmas."

POV: Listening Is An Act Of Love: A Storycorps Special

Airs Thursday, Nov. 26, 2015 at 12 p.m. on KPBS TV

POV: Listening Is An Act Of Love: A Storycorps Special Tease photo

The first-ever animated special from StoryCorps celebrates the transformative power of listening. The special features six stories from 10 years of the innovative oral history project, when everyday people sit down together to share memories and tackle life’s important questions. Framing these intimate conversations from across the country is an interview between StoryCorps founder Dave Isay and his inquisitive 9-year-old nephew, Benji, animated in the inimitable visual style of the Rauch Brothers.

KEN KRAMER'S ABOUT SAN DIEGO: Thanksgiving Special

Airs Thursday, Nov. 26, 2015 at 6:30 p.m. & 8:30 p.m. on KPBS TV

Tease photo

KEN KRAMER'S ABOUT SAN DIEGO is a collection of stories about the history and people of the area we call home. In this episode, we remember the "Turkey Queen" of Ramona; play "Guess The Year" when some curious things were making news in San Diego at Thanksgiving; look at some Holiday light traditions in our county, and much more!

Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas

Airs Mon., Dec. 7, 2015 at 8:30 a.m. & Sun., Dec. 20 at 8 a.m. & Thurs. Dec. 24 at 8 a.m. & 1:30 p.m. & Fri., Dec. 25 at 8 a.m. on KPBS TV

Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas  Tease photo

In "A Very Monkey Christmas," Curious George and the Man with the Yellow Hat are having a wonderful time getting ready for Christmas. There's only one dilemma - neither of them can figure out what to give the other for a present! In the end, both gift-giving predicaments are simply and beautifully resolved, revealing the true spirit of the holiday season.

DANIEL TIGER'S NEIGHBORHOOD: Daniel's Winter Adventure/Neighborhood Nutcracker

Airs Mon., Dec. 7, 2015 at 9:30 a.m., Mon., Dec. 21 at 9 a.m., Thurs., Dec. 24 at 9:30 a.m., Fri., Dec. 25 at 9 a.m. & Sat., Dec. 26 at 7:30 a.m. on KPBS TV

DANIEL TIGER'S NEIGHBORHOOD: Daniel's Winter Adventure/Neighborhood Nutcracker Tease photo

In “Daniel’s Winter Adventure,” Daniel, Dad, Prince Wednesday and Prince Tuesday are all going sledding! But once they get to the hill and see how tall it is, Daniel and Prince Wednesday get scared. Dad assures them that if they try it a little bit at a time, they might surprise themselves and have a great time. In “Neighborhood Nutcracker,” Daniel is going to see a show called "The Nutcracker Ballet!" Once he arrives at the performance, he finds out that Prince Wednesday is sick and needs Daniel to fill in for him and dance on stage. Daniel is reluctant at first, but realizes that if he learns the steps a little bit at a time, he can dance the Nutcracker and the show will go on!

Peg + Cat + Holidays

Airs Monday, Dec. 7, 2015 at 10 a.m. & Thursday, Dec. 24, 2015 at 10:30 a.m. on KPBS TV

Peg + Cat + Holidays Tease photo

This is a special holiday episode of Peg + Cat featuring "The Christmas Problem," "The Hanukkah Problem," and "The Penguin Problem. " This series is designed to engage preschool children and teach them how to solve math-based problems with Peg, a chatty and tenacious five year-old, her feline pal, Cat, and her smart, handsome, cool friend Ramone.


Airs Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015 at 9 a.m. &Friday, Dec. 25 at 9:30 a.m. on KPBS TV

DANIEL TIGER'S NEIGHBORHOOD: Snowflake Day!  Tease photo

In this thirty-minute holiday musical episode, the Neighborhood is celebrating Snowflake Day! Daniel has a very important role as the snowflake in the Neighborhood’s Snowflake Day Show and he can’t wait to say his lines! The Enchanted Garden is full of excitement and winter cheer as everyone pitches in to make the celebration a true Neighborhood success!

The Cat In The Hat Knows A Lot About Christmas!

Airs Wed., Dec. 9, 2015 at 6 a.m., Wed. Dec. 16 at 1 p.m., Thurs., Dec. 17 at 6:30 a.m. & Thurs., Dec. 24 at 6 a.m. on KPBS TV

The Cat In The Hat Knows A Lot About Christmas!  Tease photo

This adventure finds the Cat in the Hat, Nick and Sally on a journey around the world to help a lost reindeer find his way home to Freezeyourknees Snowland in time for Christmas. On the way, the Thingamajigger breaks down and they depend on a variety of animals—from African bush elephants to bottlenose dolphins to red crabs—and their remarkable abilities to help them make an amazing journey home.

ARTHUR: Is That Kosher / Never Never Never

Airs Monday, Dec. 14, 2015 at 2 p.m. on KPBS TV

ARTHUR: Is That Kosher / Never Never Never Tease photo

Joan Rivers lends her voice as Francine's sharp-tongued grandma, Bubba, in "Is that Kosher?" an episode about family traditions and communal celebration. Francine's convinced that she can fast on Yom Kippur just like her older sister. But then Arthur wins a free pizza party for all his friends for that very same day! Will Francine be able to resist? With Bubba's help, Francine learns that there's more to the special holiday than making it through a fast. Then in "Never, Never, Never," since Grandma Thora gives D.W. so many gifts, it must mean she really loves her, right? When D.W's extra toys fall into the hands of the destructive Tibble twins, she worries that no one loves her anymore - until Arthur comes to the rescue and proves that giving gifts isn't the only way of showing you care.

Rick Steves' European Christmas

Airs Thursday, Dec. 17 at 9 p.m. & Saturday, Dec. 19, 2015 at 4 p.m. on KPBS TV

Rick Steves' European Christmas  Tease photo

After producing a hundred of his travel shows, Rick Steves and his public television crew finally celebrated Christmas in Europe. Rick and his gang brought home a vivid and intimate look at how seven diverse cultures celebrate Christmas. From England to Norway, Burgundy to Bavaria, and Rome to the top of the Swiss Alps, this special gets you down on the carpet with wide-eyed children, up in the loft with the finest choirs, and into the kitchen with grandma and all her secrets.


Airs Sunday, Dec. 20, 2015 at 2 p.m. on KPBS TV

CRAFT IN AMERICA: Celebration Tease photo

Explore the many ways Americans celebrate time-honored traditions, featuring lion dancers and float builders for San Francisco’s acclaimed Chinese New Year Parade; artists in Michigan making ceramics for the holidays at Pewabic (Detroit) and Motawi Tileworks (Ann Arbor); Kwanzaa celebrations with artists in Chicago and Oakland; and Christmas card-making in Tacoma, Washington, with woodblock print artist Yoshiko Yamamoto.

National Christmas Tree Lighting 2015

Airs Sunday, Dec. 20, 2015 at 6 p.m. on KPBS TV

National Christmas Tree Lighting 2015 Tease photo

This year’s kick-off to the holiday season in our nation’s capital marks the 93rd annual National Christmas Tree Lighting and was held Thursday, Dec. 3, 2015, on the Ellipse at President’s Park (White House). The event can be seen on public television throughout the month of December. Two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Famers David Crosby, Stephen Stills, and Graham Nash; Grammy-nominated singer Aloe Blacc; chart-topping singer/songwriter Kelsea Ballerini; Fall Out Boy; Tori Kelly; Trombone Shorty; Miss Piggy; and the Joyous String Quartet have been added to the lineup for the 2015 National Christmas Tree Lighting.

Mr. Stink

Airs Sunday, Dec. 20, 2015 at 7 p.m. & Sunday, Dec. 27 at 10 a.m. on KPBS TV

Mr. Stink Tease photo

Chloe (Nell Tiger Free) sees Mr. Stink (Hugh Bonneville) every day, but she’s never spoken to him, which isn’t surprising, because he’s a tramp — and he stinks. But before she knows it, Chloe has an unusual friend hiding in her garden shed when it seems Mr. Stink and his stinky dog, Duchess, might be driven out of town. This special family comedy with a nose-clenching twist is based on David Walliams’ best-selling book.


Airs Monday, Dec. 21, 2015 at 9 p.m. on KPBS TV

LIDIA CELEBRATES AMERICA: Home For The Holidays Tease photo

For celebrity chef, author and restaurateur Lidia Bastianich, there is no place like home — especially at Christmas, her favorite time of year. In this new special—the latest installment of her journey to experience diverse American culture through food—Lidia invites six celebrity guests of different ethnic backgrounds to her holiday table: Christopher Walken, award-winning actor and childhood friend; award-winning actress Rita Moreno; Ann Curry, television journalist; model and television host Padma Lakshmi; celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson; and Carlo Ponti, Jr., composer.

Arthur's Perfect Christmas

Airs Thursday, Dec. 24, 2015 at 2:30 p.m. on KPBS TV

Arthur's Perfect Christmas  Tease photo

Everyone’s favorite aardvark gives kids a new spin on seasonal traditions in his one-hour special, showing children many ways to celebrate “the holidays.” Plans are underway in Elwood City for the best holidays ever as Arthur, D.W., their family and friends make preparations for perfect gifts, perfect parties and perfect family traditions for Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and even “Baxter Day” (Buster and his mom’s special celebration).

San Diego Ballet's Nutcracker

Airs Thursday, Dec. 24, 2015 at 8 p.m. on KPBS TV

San Diego Ballet's Nutcracker  Tease photo

The San Diego Ballet's "Nutcracker" features an international cast from China, Japan, Russia, Hungary and Mexico as well as San Diego School of Ballet's children from all over San Diego County. This ballet fantasy delights with over 100 beautifully costumed dancers, reveling in Tchaikovsky's beloved score.

Holiday Handbells: The Raleigh Ringers

Airs Monday, Dec. 24, 2015 at 10 p.m. on KPBS TV

Holiday Handbells: The Raleigh Ringers  Tease photo

The Raleigh Ringers, an internationally acclaimed community handbell choir based in Raleigh, North Carolina, present the sequel to their critically acclaimed holiday special, "One Winter Evening at Meymandi." "Holiday Handbells" runs the gamut of song selections from old yuletide favorites to Vince Guaraldi's "A Charlie Brown Christmas" score and other sounds of the season.

Christmas With The Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Santino Fontana & The Sesame Street Muppets

Airs Friday, Dec. 25, 2015 at 6 a.m. on KPBS TV

Christmas With The Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Santino Fontana & The Sesame Street  Muppets Tease photo

Renowned star of stage and song Santino Fontana and the Muppets® from Sesame Street® join the world-famous Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square for a magical holiday extravaganza. SESAME STREET has been educating and entertaining the world for more than 45 years, but this concert special marks the Muppets' first performance with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square.

Call The Midwife Holiday Special 2015

Airs Friday, Dec. 25, 2015 at 9 p.m. on KPBS TV

Call The Midwife Holiday Special 2015 Tease photo

Festive spirit is in plentiful supply as Poplar gets ready for the holidays. A trip to see the Regent Street lights and a visit from a BBC film crew promise to make this 1960 Christmas one to remember. As the community pulls together to prepare for the televised carol concert, Nonnatus is rocked to the core when one of its own goes missing, causing a full-scale manhunt. Meanwhile an unexpected surprise for a grieving mother may help bring the Christmas magic home.

LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER: New York Philharmonic New Year's Eve: La Vie Parisienne

Airs Thursday, Dec. 31, 2015 at 8 p.m. on KPBS TV

LIVE FROM LINCOLN CENTER: New York Philharmonic New Year's Eve: La Vie Parisienne  Tease photo

Ring in a new year with the New York Philharmonic and the sounds of Paris, featuring Alan Gilbert and mezzo-soprano Susan Graham in music by Ravel, Offenbach and Saint-Saëns’ “Carnival of the Animals” narrated by Tony Award-winner Nathan Lane. Pianists Inon Barnatan and Makoto Ozone make guest appearances.

GREAT PERFORMANCES: From Vienna: The New Year’s Celebration 2016

Airs Saturday, Jan. 2, 2016 at 9 p.m. on KPBS TV

GREAT PERFORMANCES: From Vienna: The New Year’s Celebration 2016 Tease photo

Stage and screen legend Julie Andrews returns for the seventh time to host the festive annual New Year’s celebration with the Vienna Philharmonic, under the direction of Mariss Jansons, from Vienna’s Musikverein. “From Vienna: The New Year’s Celebration 2016,” featuring the infectious melodies of the Strauss Family and their contemporaries, airs on GREAT PERFORMANCES on PBS. Maestro Jansons is returning for the third time to conduct the ever-popular concert. The Vienna Boys’ Choir and soloists of the Vienna State Ballet also return for the gala evening.

On KPBS Radio

(Go to TV)

Turkey Confidential 2015

Airs Thursday, Nov. 26, 2015 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. on KPBS FM

Turkey Confidential guests

“Turkey Confidential” is our annual live Thanksgiving call-in show. Join us Thursday, Nov. 26, from 11 a.m to 1 p.m. (PST) for two hours of interviews and inspiration. Remember last year? Our scheduled guests this year are Jacques Pépin, Dave Isay, Nigella Lawson and Andrew Zimmern. Leave a message now at (800) 537-5252, or send Lynne your questions via email, Twitter and Facebook. Check out our complete archives of Thanksgiving recipes and Thanksgiving tips and how-tos.

The Science Of Gratitude

Airs Thursday, Nov. 26, 2015 from 9 p.m. - 10 p.m. on KPBS FM

Host Susan Sarandon

The past 10 years have seen an explosion in the scientific study of happiness. The findings so far are complex, and incomplete. But if they could be distilled into one simple prescription for happiness, it would probably be this: Say thank you. Gratitude, it seems, is a key—perhaps the key—to feeling more satisfied with your life. It improves your relationships with loved ones. It’s even good for your heart.

Learn more about these and many other cutting-edge findings in “The Science of Gratitude,” a one-hour radio special narrated by Academy Award-winner Susan Sarandon. The special, produced by the Peabody Award-winning Ben Manilla Productions in partnership with the Greater Good Science Center, will be airing this fall on public radio stations nationwide, distributed by Public Radio International.

“The Science of Gratitude” will combine scientific research with personal stories illustrating the benefits and obstacles to feeling truly grateful. Throughout the hour, you’ll gain practical insights into how to cultivate more gratitude in yourself, your kids, your workplace, and beyond.

Marketplace Holiday Business

Airs Saturday, Dec. 19 at 3 p.m. & Monday, Dec. 21, 2015 at 7 p.m. on KPBS FM

Host Lizzie O'Leary

The Marketplace Weekend team looks at where the holidays meet money. Host Lizzie O'Leary is joined by some of APM's biggest names to explore that intersection, tell some stories, and help you financially navigate the holiday season. Photo Credit: American Public Media

All Songs Considered For The Holidays

Airs Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2015 at 7 p.m. on KPBS FM

NPR Holiday 2015 image

Host Bob Boilen and friends trade holiday cheer and snarky barbs while bringing you the best holiday songs from new and emerging breakout bands. Hear renditions of great holiday music you'll never hear at the mall or your mother's house. This is an encore presentation from 2012.

New! Pink Martini's Joy To The World: A Holiday Spectacular

Airs Thursday, Dec. 24, 2015 at 8 p.m. on KPBS FM

Pink Martini

The internationally acclaimed “little orchestra" Pink Martini bedecks the airwaves with festive holiday songs from across the globe. From timeless classics to rarely heard gems, hear a multi-denominational, multi-cultural jubilee, overflowing with enough holiday spirit to warm your entire family. Hosted by All Things Considered’s Ari Shapiro, and co-produced by OPB and Murray Street Productions. View a trailer on YouTube. Photo Credit: Chris Hornbecker

Jonathan Winters' A Christmas Carol

Airs Friday, Dec. 25, 2015 at 11 a.m. on KPBS FM

Jonathan Winters

An updated version of a public radio tradition hosted by NPR's Susan Stamberg. Master comedian Jonathan Winters presents a distinctive reading of Dickens' holiday classic, using a special performing edition prepared by Dickens for his own presentations. Also featuring Mimi Kennedy. From NPR and KCRW.

Tinsel Tales 3

Airs Friday, Dec. 25, 2015 at 12 p.m. on KPBS FM

NPR Holiday 2015 image

In keeping with a well-loved NPR holiday tradition, hear the third collection of extraordinary Christmas stories that will transport you to unexpected places. Audie Cornish, Ken Harbaugh, Nina Totenberg and other voices from NPR's past and present tell stories of the season in this hour-long special. Some tales are funny; some are touching; some are insightful or irreverent or nostalgic or surprising. You might recognize them from our broadcast archives — or you might fall in love with them for the first time. Hosted by Lynn Neary.

Tinsel Tales 2

Airs Friday, Dec. 25, 2015 at 1 p.m. on KPBS FM

Lynn Neary

NPR fills millions of homes each holiday with humor, warmth, and a host of festive voices. Continuing with the tradition of the first "Tinsel Tales" program, this is another collection of the best and most requested holiday stories. Joy, hope, and childhood memories overflow as NPR voices, past and present, tell stories of the season. Hosted by Lynn Neary. Photo: Lynn Neary/ Photo Credit: © 2010 NPR, by Doby Photography

A Season's Giot

Airs Saturday, Dec. 26, 2015 at 9 p.m. on KPBS FM

Madafo Lloyd Wilson

This one-hour celebration in story and song is public radio's only nationally syndicated Kwanzaa program. Hosted for nearly 20 years by acclaimed storyteller Madafo Lloyd Wilson, this annual special captures the tales and traditions of African American and African peoples. Wilson shares tales that are ageless and that speak to all people and cultures. Photo: Madafo Lloyd Wilson, "A Season's Griot"/ Credit: WHQR

Capitol Steps New Year's Special

Airs Friday, Jan. 1, 2016 at 7 p.m. on KPBS FM

Illustration of Capitol Steps staff

Faster than Joe Biden deciding whether to run for President! More powerful than the wind it takes to finally blow off Donald Trump's hair! It's the Capitol Steps annual year in review special, "Politics Takes a Holiday!" All your favorite candidates will be there, and some will be emailing about it for years afterwards on their private server. Join Hillary, Bernie, the Donald, Jeb, Marco, Carly, and more Republican candidates than you can shake a stick at! So tune in this New Year's and laugh, because making fun of seventeen candidates is way more fun than simply making fun of two.