The PBS children’s series FETCH! with Ruff Ruffman came to campus recently to film a segment for the show’s upcoming fifth season. Dressed as detectives, two contestants on the program (which is part reality show, part game show, part spoof), arrived at the Amherst Museum of Natural History with a six-person crew on a drizzly weekend morning in June.
Sauter, left, shows the contestants around the museum
The filming worked like this: Sauter and the kids would talk, unscripted, about mountain erosion or dinosaur tracks or the social habits of prehistoric creatures until a producer or cameraman would yell, “Cut!,” give direction on where to stand or what to say and order a retake.
The contestants examine a bone fragment in the Musem of Natural History
At one point, Emmie pointed to a rock inside a museum display case. It was shiny and purple. “Ruff, check this out: that is one pretty stone,” Emmie said. The exchange was one-sided: Ruff, an animated dog, is the show’s star. He was not on set.