Charles County residents know the ins and outs of the area pretty well, but a new show is bringing some of the county’s attractions to a bigger stage.
“Air Water or Land,” an outdoor travel show available on Prime Video, released its second episode this week that focuses on local spots in Charles County.
The series puts a spin on the average travel show. Instead of highlighting expensive or “unattainable” travel spots, host and producer Angel Verde said AWOL focuses on realism. As an avid outdoors person himself, Verde wanted to showcase trips and activities that anyone could do. “We are a travel show that advocates for the average Joe,” he said.
He added that education and showcasing the community’s impact are also important themes in the series. “So hopefully you can see some fun stuff but you can also learn what people are doing to take care of nature,” Verde said in the Charles County episode, “maybe even a way that you can help take care of nature ‘cause the outdoors matter to everybody.”
When Verde got the idea to produce an episode of “AWOL” in the county, he approached Kellie Hinkle, the Charles County’s chief of tourism for guidance. She helped craft a list of family-friendly activities and places that would “fit really well into their theme,” she said, such as biking at the Indian Head Rail Trail and horseback riding at Southern Grace Farm.
“It’s about the host enjoying a visit to a community, and I think that that’s what is the most exciting — that it really tells the story of Charles County and why people would want to come to Charles County,” Hinkle said.
The 25-minute episode covers a gamut of places and activities in the county. In addition to the Indian Head Rail Trail and Southern Grace Farm, Verde also paid a visit to Mallows Bay in the episode, kayaking alongside the owners of Atlantic Kayak Company, the La Plata farmer’s market — which he says, in the scene, is “as local as shopping local gets” — The Charles Restaurant and other places.
“I lucked out that everybody’s really passionate about nature,” Verde said in an interview. “It all just kind of worked out to be really a very ideal location for our show.” In the other two episodes available on Prime Video, “AWOL” travels to Nelson County, Va., and northeast Tennessee.The show is available to Amazon Prime members for free. Those who are not signed up for Prime can purchase episodes for $1.99 in high definition or $0.99 in standard definition.
As of Dec. 31, 2018, 101 million people in the United States were estimated to be Amazon Prime members, according to research by Consumer Intelligence Research Partners. “People are going to be able to log into their computers at any time and the great thing about this [episode] is it really focuses on Charles County,” Hinkle said.
This isn’t the first time Charles County has been featured in the entertainment world. “It’s How You Get There,” a History Channel show, filmed its third episode of season two in Charles County. In the episode entitled “Meet Me in Maryland,” the hosts pay a visit to places such as Smallwood State Park and Port Tobacco’s Historic Village. The episode was released in November of 2018 and is available on Prime Video. For non-Prime members, the episode can be purchased for $0.99 in both high and standard definition.