Messge from WGBH regarding Norm

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Forum topic by BlankMan posted 10-21-2009 05:16 PM 8925 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1488 posts in 2774 days

10-21-2009 05:16 PM

Just got this a few minutes ago. I know it’s old news, but it’s sad news from my perspective. I had looked for the official news release but couldn’t find it, this looks like it, so being a PBS member I sent a note over the weekend asking why, this was the response:

Dear Mr. BlankMan,

Thank you for your interest in WGBH. We always appreciate hearing from our viewers, listeners, and Web site visitors.

Although we would have liked to continue airing The New Yankee Workshop, it is concluding after 21 years because Norm has decided to retire from the program.
. Host Norm Abram will continue his work on PBS series This Old House.

„We’ve had a great run, built challenging projects, met wonderful woodworkers, and received loyal support from millions of viewers,„ states Norm Abram, host of the show.

„Throughout the show’s run, Norm has proven that he is one of the great craftsmen of our time,„ says creator and executive producer Russell Morash.

Repeat episodes of The New Yankee Workshop are currently airing on PBS (check local listings). Abram will continue to appear on the Emmy Award-winning home improvement series This Old House, which premiered its 30th anniversary season on October 8, 2009 (check local listings).

The New Yankee Workshop’s companion Web site,, will continue to provide viewers the opportunity to get into the shop with project plans, DVDs, a Q&A section, and more.

The New Yankee Workshop is a co-production of Morash Associates, Inc. and WGBH Boston. National corporate funding for the twenty-first season of The New Yankee Workshop was provided by Delta Machinery and Porter Cable. The creator, executive producer, and director of the series is Russell Morash, long credited with introducing the „how-to„ programming concept to television through such celebrated WGBH series as This Old House, The Victory Garden, and Julia Child’s The French Chef.

We hope you continue to enjoy the programs on WGBH – produced in Boston, shared with the world.

WGBH Member Development and Services

WGBH enriches people’s lives through programs and services that educate, inspire, and entertain, fostering citizenship and culture, the joy of learning, and the power of diverse perspectives.

-- -Curt, Milwaukee, WI

6 replies so far

View a1Jim's profile


115177 posts in 2998 days

#1 posted 10-21-2009 05:23 PM

Norm has been working two shows for all these years and this is only one show he is retiring from . It had a great run my interest in woodworking was brought about buy these two shows .Thanks Norm and thanks Mr. morash.

-- Custom furniture

View dbhost's profile


5590 posts in 2653 days

#2 posted 10-21-2009 05:28 PM

While I am exceedingly grateful for the decades of dedication, and innovation that Norm, and Mr. Morash have brought to us, and I am saddened by the loss of The New Yankee Workshop, I think that with each door that closes, another one opens. I am excited to see who will take the place of Norm. I think some young blood with a good sense of humor to liven things up would be great. Let’s see if we can get someone like Marc Spagnulo to do the next show.

-- My workshop blog can be found at

View a1Jim's profile


115177 posts in 2998 days

#3 posted 10-21-2009 05:32 PM

Good point maybe they can alternate with Charles Neil (young enough for me) Tommy (aka T Chisel) and any of a dozen or more of top LJs members.

-- Custom furniture

View BlankMan's profile


1488 posts in 2774 days

#4 posted 10-21-2009 05:59 PM

Maybe this is selfish but I wish he would have retired from This Old House and kept going in the NYW. I watch both and like both but I get more out of NYW.

NYW was truly made for people like us, sure part of it was to make money too, but PBS isn’t as greedy as the Networks. Take Wood Works, another excellent show, David J Marks was a woodworker and an artist and it showed in his work. But the production company was in it for the money, strictly. They did a 5 year run and are getting the residuals from the reruns. That show could have easily gone another 5, 10 years, maybe more.

I emailed David when I noticed they stopped producing new shows and got a response back. What I got from his response was that he didn’t want to quit, he said that if I wanted more shows to let the DIY Network know, so I did, I emailed them too. Still got DIY’s wishy-washy not committal response around someplace, they didn’t admit it was canceled but they didn’t say there were going to be more new shows either.

-- -Curt, Milwaukee, WI

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


17577 posts in 3097 days

#5 posted 10-21-2009 07:46 PM

Too bad he didn’t retire form TOH:-(( Good to hear he retired instead of all other possibilities:-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View tinnman65's profile


1293 posts in 2835 days

#6 posted 10-22-2009 01:31 AM

I think I watched that show for a year before I bought my first woodworking tool ( Shopsmith Mark V), I can honestly say he put the woodworking bug in my vanes. That was probably about 15 years ago. I know you can only watch someone make dado joints and use biscuts just so many times but I still enjoyed watching every episode and actually looked forward to them, it was like a visit from an old friend.I built three of Norms projects and had a lot of fun and learned a bit doing them. Some say he doesn’t really do “fine woodworking” but he will always be a woodworking icon in my mind. It was nice when DIY started David Marks WOODWORKS just from the caliber of projects alone but I see that is history too. Looks like it’s up to T Chisel to keep my woodworking fix up and thank god for this site too!!!

-- Paul--- Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. — Scott Adams

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