186 episodes

Florida’s Fourth Estate looks at everything from swampy politics to a fragile environment and even the crazy headlines that make Florida the craziest state in the Union. Ginger Gadsden and Matt Austin use decades of experience as journalists to dissect the headlines that impact Florida. Each week they have a guest host who helps give an irreverent look at the issues impacting the Sunshine State. Big influencers like Attorney John Morgan, renowned Florida journalists and the scientists protecting Florida’s ecosystem can often be found as guests. Look for new episodes every week, and visit ClickOrlando.com for the latest WKMG News 6 coverage of Orlando and beyond.

Florida’s Fourth Estate Florida Podcast Network

    • Government
    • 5.0 • 22 Ratings

Florida’s Fourth Estate looks at everything from swampy politics to a fragile environment and even the crazy headlines that make Florida the craziest state in the Union. Ginger Gadsden and Matt Austin use decades of experience as journalists to dissect the headlines that impact Florida. Each week they have a guest host who helps give an irreverent look at the issues impacting the Sunshine State. Big influencers like Attorney John Morgan, renowned Florida journalists and the scientists protecting Florida’s ecosystem can often be found as guests. Look for new episodes every week, and visit ClickOrlando.com for the latest WKMG News 6 coverage of Orlando and beyond.

    Former News 6 reporter, husband turned viral ‘Chrismas Jammies’ video into media empire

    Former News 6 reporter, husband turned viral ‘Chrismas Jammies’ video into media empire

    Kim and Penn Holderness pulled on their Christmas Jammies 10 years ago and churned out a viral video many still remember a decade later.
    They teamed up with their two young kids, Lola and Penn Charles, to rap about all the things that made 2013 special for them.
    Today, they are still making videos, but they are also releasing books, games, and merch.
    While they did win the 33rd season of The Amazing Race in 2022, Kim says another round of reality TV is not on their short list.
    She said, “Maybe like if you needed really middle-aged comedy, like the Golden Survivor. Also, if I needed to get trim really quick for an event.”
    But, she and Penn are game for sharing their family experiences in a fun and relatable way.
    “I think a lot of people make content that shows how funny they are, how great their life is, but as a viewer watching it, what’s in it for me, that you’re funny? No, I would prefer like make me laugh, show me something that I can relate to, make me feel something,” Kim said.
    She said News 6 helped shape her creative process.
    “I would say I learned a lot from our news director at WKMG, when I was there. His name was Skip Valet. When I was there for the afternoon pitch meeting, you had to walk in with three ideas. And if you didn’t have an idea, (he would say) you need to take another way in to work.”
    And after making a pitch Kim said, “He would always kinda answer back like, ‘why would a viewer care about this story you just pitched.’”
    In addition to nailing the creative process, Kim and Penn bring a lot of raw talent to their content.
    Kim was trained in dance and Penn is a musician.
    But, even with all of that working in their favor, Penn said the duo threw a lot of spaghetti at the wall to see what would stick.
    Every video didn’t go viral, but their success is evident.
    They currently have their own website, have nearly 5 million followers on Facebook, amassed nearly 18 million likes on TikTok, and are releasing a new book called “ADHD is Awesome.”
    Kim says Penn’s book, “Is written for and by an ADHD brain.”
    The duo already has a game available at stores but said they hope to have another one available on Amazon by Black Friday.
    They also have taken up pickleball and are now offering a line of paddles online.
    They aren’t alone in their success.
    Kim said their kids are very busy, but they are still active in some of their videos and have been making money with them since their original Christmas Jammies video went viral.
    To learn more about Kim and Penn Holderness check out Florida’s Fourth Estate. You can download the podcast from wherever you listen to podcasts or watch anytime on News 6+.
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    • 22 min
    Retired Disney Imagineer shares his top secrets

    Retired Disney Imagineer shares his top secrets

    If you have ever been to Disney World, you have probably been on the Jungle Cruise at Magic Kingdom.
    One of the highlights of the ride is the feeling of escaping to the jungle while laughing at a slew of “dad” jokes.
    Former Imagineer Brian Collins is responsible for some of those.
    “I was very lucky to be able to work on some very cool projects, like writing very corny puns for the Jungle Cruise,” Collins said.
    He said he wrote, “You don’t need to bring any money with you on the jungle cruises because there are plenty of banks along the river.”
    “One of the reasons I think I got hired in as a writer with Imagineering is because writing was something I always loved to do, it came very easy to me and I could write anything from technical writing to poems, to ‘dad’ jokes and everything in between,” Collins said.
    Being an Imagineer can be a coveted role, but Collins, who is now an instructor at the University of Central Florida, said he tells his students there is enough room in the theme park industry for all of them.
    “Don’t focus on being an Imagineer. What you need to focus on is finding what your passion is, finding what you love to do, and focus on that and become happy and an expert in what your passion is and if you can do that, hopefully the rest will take care of itself,” Collins said.
    “There’s so many ways that you can create a path, whether it’s Imagineering, or Universal Creative, or working for Legoland, SeaWorld. I mean there is a whole cottage industry, especially here in Central Florida, of amazing firms that support the themed entertainment industry for example that Imagineers will work with,” Collins explained.
    Still, he says it’s important to differentiate yourself.
    “I have a favorite saying for my students, it’s that ‘if you do the same thing as everyone else, you’re just going to be like everyone else, and you don’t want to be like everyone else,” Collins said.
    To hear more of Collins’ advice for becoming a staple in the theme park industry check out Florida’s Fourth Estate. You can download the podcast from wherever you listen to podcasts or watch anytime on News 6+.
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    • 21 min
    Where you can save big money on cars, trucks, boats, gifts in Central Florida

    Where you can save big money on cars, trucks, boats, gifts in Central Florida

    If you are looking for a discount car, truck, sunglasses or even office equipment there is one place to find it all.
    A quick look at the George Gideon Auctioneers website reveals many of the local governments in Central Florida use them to sell their surplus items.
    Right now a 2012 Dodge Charger from the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office is going for $1,025, a kayak from the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office is going for $3, Seminole County Public Schools is offering several school buses that have not been bid on yet.
    Volusia County is selling a 2018 ambulance. The current bid is $1,000.
    Pam Wilsky is the Purchasing and Contracts Director with Volusia County. She joined Matt Austin and Ginger Gadsden on Florida’s Fourth Estate to talk more about how the surplus program works.
    She said the items people buy from the county through the auctioneer website may have a few miles on them but are well maintained.
    “We try very hard with this program to keep the lifecycle good so that what we are sending still has residual value when we get ready to send it to auction, so it’s not broken down, it’s not beat up,” Wilsky said. “It’s not to say that there will not be some things wrong with it, but everything within the county is maintained on a regular basis, so it probably is a good value as far as a vehicle to somebody.”
    She said there have been some interesting finds at the auction and that the county once re-sold a mosquito control helicopter.
    “They actually had one that for whatever reason had been disassembled and they wanted to sell it. The appraised value was $350,000,” Wilsky said.
    She said a firm in Montana sent a truck to pick it up and used it to fight wildfires out west.
    Austin said he also noticed some drones on the auctioneer’s website going for as low as $27 after Gov. Ron DeSantis made it illegal for counties to use ones from China.
    Wilsky said Volusia County dealt with the situation differently, but “a lot of law enforcement and things like that had a lot of these and it was a big impact so I’m not surprised you saw them.”
    Aside from providing a savings opportunity for customers, Wilsky said putting surplus items up for auction also helps the county’s bottom line.
    She said last year the program brought in about $1.7 million in revenue.
    Learn more about the program and how you can score some good deals by checking out Florida’s Fourth Estate. You can download the podcast from wherever you listen to podcasts or watch it anytime on News 6+.
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    • 21 min
    ‘The Winter White House:’ New book looks at history of Donald Trump’s Florida home

    ‘The Winter White House:’ New book looks at history of Donald Trump’s Florida home

    Mar-a-lago is one of the most famous homes in Florida, if not the country, but the property former President Donald Trump referred to as his “Winter White House” wasn’t always what it is today. It used to belong to all Americans.
    In her book “American Castle One Hundred Years of Mar-a-Lago,” Mary Shanklin talks about how the mansion and surrounding property used to be part of the National Park Service.
    She said the original owner, Marjorie Merriweather Post, heir to the creator of Post Cereal, died thinking the home she built was in the hands of the federal government.
    But there were a lot of competing interests after Post died that changed the course of the property’s history.
    “The heirs needed some cash which they could get by selling Mar-a-lago. The people of Palm Beach, they didn’t want any part of having tourists come on their island, so it was divested,” Shanklin told Matt Austin and Ginger Gadsden on Florida’s Fourth Estate
    Shanklin said the heirs went through several prospective buyers, one of them being Donald and Ivana Trump.
    “When Donald Trump went to purchase it, he was purchasing for $7 million. The Mar-a-Lago that exists from South Ocean Boulevard to Lake Worth, which is the intercoastal waterway, and the heirs — the Marjorie Merriweather Post Trust — they had sold off an oceanfront parcel. So he had to buy that because Mar-a-lago is not going to be sea to the lake if you don’t own the oceanfront parcel. I think the oceanfront parcel may have went for $ 2 million,” Shanklin said.
    Many call that $9 million price tag in 1985 a steal considering Shanklin said it cost Post $7 million to build Mar-a-Lago in the 1920′s.
    Shanklin said to establish yourself in Palm Beach in the 1920s your house had to be regal and you had to host all of the big parties and dinners.
    “That’s where they wintered, that’s where everybody of power and means went. That’s where you build your relationships and gain trust with people. That’s where it all happens in Palm Beach,” Shanklin said.
    Shanklin said the regalness of the home is still intact. She was given a tour of the property during Trump’s presidency and said the ceiling looks like something straight out of Venice.
    “Everything gets politicized today. You hear Republicans say, ‘Mar-a-Lago is such an amazing beautiful place.’ You hear Democrats say, ‘It’s gross, it’s crawling with roaches.’ What was the feeling in there?” Austin asked.
    “The people who are paying a quarter of a million dollars to become members there are probably getting a bang for their buck,” Shanklin said. “I felt like it looked immaculate. I felt like the furnishings, if not from the original era, which probably they weren’t, they were tastefully done. A lot of the original artwork was still on the walls. I don’t know what was going on in the kitchen or anything. You could see the signature public places and spaces. I feel like it’s really been preserved and maintained and kept well.”
    Regardless of what the house looks like, Shanklin said having a membership to Mar-a-Lago is about access and says it still remains unclear if, as the political season gets underway, being the former President will encourage just as many people to maintain their memberships at Mar-a-Lago as when he was President.
    Learn more about the history of Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s use of the home and the case surrounding possibly classified documents being kept on the property by checking out Florida’s Fourth Estate. You can download the podcast from wherever you listen to podcasts or watch it anytime on News 6+.
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    • 22 min
    Billions of birds die flying south for winter. Here’s how you can help

    Billions of birds die flying south for winter. Here’s how you can help

    People aren’t the only ones looking to avoid the cold this winter.
    Birds are also looking for a warmer spot to settle down, but their journey is proving to be difficult.
    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service estimates up to 988 million crash into buildings every year and die.
    The Audubon Society said that’s because the majority of them migrate at night, and are drawn in by city lights, rest among the trees and when they try to return to the sky they crash into windows.
    “They see the sky in front of them and it’s actually a reflection of the sky in the glass and they fly towards it not knowing that it’s a death sentence and they hit the glass and they are either injured or killed by hitting the glass,” said Mike Taylor, the curator of herps, birds and others at Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens.
    It’s not just skyscrapers in the city drawing birds back to earth, Elizabeth Filippelli with the Duval Audubon Society said residential house lights are too.
    Lights Out Northeast Florida is asking people to take a few steps to help the birds make it safely to their destination.
    The organization advises turning off non-essential lights between 11 p.m. - 6 a.m., direct lighting downward instead of upward into the sky, putting timers on outdoor lights and turning off interior lighting, especially on upper floors.
    Birds migrate from Sept. 15 - Nov. 15. So, your actions over the next few days can have a lot of impact.
    If you would like a closer look at what birds are migrating over your neighborhood just plug your county into the Birdcast Dashboard. A quick search of Orange County reveals 122,200 crossed the area and more than 1.1 million crossed our state in a single night.
    To learn more about bird migration, the risks they face, and how you can help, check out Florida’s Fourth Estate. You can download the podcast from wherever you listen to podcasts or watch any time on the News 6+ App for your smart TV.
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    • 21 min
    Here’s what’s next for ancient boat found under Florida street

    Here’s what’s next for ancient boat found under Florida street

    A boat, which experts believe is from the 1800s, has a new home after crews stumbled upon it during a road construction project.
    The Florida Department of Transportation was working on drainage improvement along King Street and State Road A1A in St. Augustine in October when they discovered the historic boat.
    Dr. James Delgado with SEARCH, a company headquartered in Orlando that describes itself as a global leader in maritime archeology, talked about what’s next for the artifact with Matt Austin and Ginger Gadsden on Florida’s Fourth Estate.
    Delgado said it took crews five days to remove the vessel from the ground.
    He said the job included removing dirt, muck, and even oysters from the outside of the boat.
    After exposing it, he said the team then documented it and lifted it out of the ground. The boards were then wrapped in cloth and put into freshwater tanks at the Lighthouse Maritime Museum so they wouldn’t deteriorate.
    He said it is now safe and out of the way, but the work is not done.
    “Now what would have to happen is more documentation, reconstructing it on paper, and discussions beginning about what’s next,” Delgado said.
    What’s next could include putting it on display. Delgado described that as a lengthier and more costly option, but stressed that, at this stage, things are being lined up so more informed decisions can be made.
    Despite being only 20 feet long, Delgado said the boat still has cultural significance.
    “In all the years I have worked on this, whether it has been a bigger shipwreck, (the) Titanic, wrecks at Pearl Harbor, others that I have worked on — Clotilda, the last slave ship — these powerful stories that connect us to ships like that are one part of it, but there’s also these vessels that with no name speak to the reality of life as well and sharing that is practically one of the best days on the job,” he said.
    To learn more about the unnamed vessel and Delgado’s work uncovering other vessels in Florida with National Geographic check out Florida’s Fourth Estate. You can download it from wherever you listen to podcasts or watch it anytime on the News 6+ app for your smart TV.
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    • 22 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
22 Ratings

22 Ratings

Baez1013 ,

I love this podcast!! Very entertaining

❤️

lulu austin 😄😄 ,

inspiring

Matt, you and ginger have such great chemistry!!

Lee Leane ,

Love you two!

Please don’t ever stop your podcasts, I love every minute of them and am always entertained while I do my morning bike ride. Ginger your laughter is so contagious I’m sure people wonder what’s wrong with me as I’m laughing right along with you through my earbuds! Great work!!!

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