KXMB-TV

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KXMB-TV / KXMA-TV
(semi-satellites of KXMC-TV,
Minot, North Dakota)
KXMB logo
KXMA logo
KXMB: Bismarck, North Dakota
KXMA: Dickinson, North Dakota
Branding KXMB CBS 12; KXMA CBS 2 (general)
KX Television (regional)
KX News (newscasts)
Slogan Your Eye on Dakota
Channels Digital:
KXMB: 12 (VHF)
Virtual: 12 (PSIP)
KXMA: 19 (UHF)
Virtual: 2 (PSIP)
Subchannels KXMB: 12.1 CBS
12.3 Weather
KXMA: 2.1 CBS
2.2 KBMY/ABC
2.3 Weather
Translators K09FG Lemmon (relays KXMB)
Affiliations CBS
Owner Reiten Television, Inc.
First air date KXMB: November 19, 1955
KXMA: October 15, 1956
Call letters' meaning KX Television
Former callsigns

KXMB:
KBMB-TV (1955-1960)

KXMA:
KDIX-TV (1956-1983)
KNDX (1983-1985)
Former channel number(s) Analog:
KXMB:
12 (VHF, 1955-2009)
KXMA:
2 (VHF, 1956-2009)
Digital:
KXMB:
23 (UHF, 2002-2009)
Former affiliations Secondary:
Both stations:
ABC (1955-1986)
KXMA:
NBC (1956-1983)
Transmitter power KXMB: 19.1 kW
KXMA: 150 kW
Height KXMB: 444.3 m
KXMA: 217 m
Facility ID KXMB: 55686
KXMA: 55684
Transmitter coordinates KXMB:
46°35′23″N 100°48′20″W / 46.58972°N 100.80556°W / 46.58972; -100.80556
KXMA:
46°43′35″N 102°54′57″W / 46.72639°N 102.91583°W / 46.72639; -102.91583 (KXMA-TV)
Website www.kxnet.com

KXMB-TV, channel 12, is the CBS-affiliated television station for Bismarck, North Dakota. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on VHF channel 12 (or virtual channel 12.1 via PSIP) from a transmitter near St. Anthony. The station can also be seen on Midcontinent cable channel 11 in Bismarck-Mandan, and cable channel 12 in most other areas. There is a high definition feed provided on Midcontinent digital channel 611.

Owned by Reiten Television of Minot, it has studios on North 15th Street in Bismarck. KXMB is one of two full-fledged CBS stations in the KX Television network of CBS affiliates in western North Dakota, along with Minot's KXMC-TV.

KXMB is the largest station in the KX group, and the group's president, Tim Reiten, also serves as this station's general manager. Despite this, KXMB is actually considered a semi-satellite of KXMC. It clears all network and syndicated programming as provided through its parent but airs separate newscasts, station identifications, and commercial inserts. KXMB and KXMA serve the southern portion of the Bismarck/Minot market while KXMC and KXMD serve the northern portion. KXMB and KXMC often share news stories and co-produce joint morning and 5:00 p.m. newscasts seen on all four stations. Master control and some internal operations of KXMB and KXMA are based at KXMC's facilities in Minot. The four stations are counted as a single unit for ratings purposes.

KXMA-TV, channel 2, in Dickinson, North Dakota operates as a semi-satellite of KXMB. This outlet broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 19 (or virtual channel 2.1 via PSIP) from a transmitter southwest of Dickinson. KXMA identifies itself as a station in its own right, but airs a time-shifted simulcast of KXMB in Mountain Time. However, KXMA airs separate commercials and station identifications. The station maintains a news bureau and advertising sales office at the intersection of West Villard Street and State Avenue North in Dickinson. As Dickinson uses Mountain Time, KXMA airs 6 p.m. starts to primetime rather than the usual 7 p.m. start for the rest of North Dakota. The station can also be seen on Consolidated Telcom cable channel 6 in Dickinson, and cable channel 2 in most other areas. There is a high definition feed provided on Consolidated Telcom digital channel 306.

Syndicated programming on KXMB/KXMA includes Dr. Phil, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Entertainment Tonight, Friends, Rachael Ray, among others.

Digital television[edit]

KXMB was the first commercial digital television station in North Dakota as when it went on the air in 2002. In March 2009, KXMB requested that it go digital two weeks before the transition date of June 12 in order to repurpose existing transmitter equipment for KX satellite stations.[1] KXMB's broadcasts became digital-only at 10am, May 28, 2009.[2]

KXMB-TV[edit]

Channel Aspect Format Programming
12.1 16:9 1080i main KXMB-TV programming / CBS
12.3 4:3 480i Weather

KXMA-TV[edit]

Channel Aspect Format Programming
2.1 16:9 1080i main KXMA-TV programming / CBS
2.2 720p Simulcast of KBMY / ABC
2.3 4:3 480i Weather

History[edit]

KXMB-TV Studio (1958-present)

KXMB first went on the air on November 19, 1955 as KBMB-TV, owned by Fargo businessman John Boler and his North Dakota Broadcasting Company. The station had a primary affiliation with CBS, but carried other networks as well. During the late 1950s, the station was briefly affiliated with the NTA Film Network.[3] In 1958, it moved to its current location.

In 1959, Boler sold a part-interest in the North Dakota Broadcasting Company to Chester Reiten of Minot. The two men teamed up to buy that city's CBS station, KCJB-TV, and changed the calls to KXMC-TV. The two stations merged their operations, with KXMC as the flagship station. In 1959, KBMB changed its calls to the current KXMB. They would put KXMD-TV in Williston on in 1969.

This ad from TV Guide in 1973 shows the KXMB-TV news team, logo, and set as they existed at the time.

KXJB-TV in Fargo was co-owned with the KX stations (though programmed separately) until Boler sold his interest in the partnership to Reiten in 1971. Reiten retained the western North Dakota stations. His son Tim owns the stations today. The KX stations formerly had a secondary affiliation with ABC shared with KFYR-TV before full-time ABC affiliate KBMY signed on.

This ad from TV Guide in 1973 shows the KXMB-TV logo and a promotional campaign, which had been used by various parties since the early days of TV to promote it as having "sight, sound, motion, emotion" and later, color.

KXMA signed on in 1956 as KDIX-TV, and was owned by the Dickinson Radio and TV Corporation along with KDIX radio. Although the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) had combined all of western and central North Dakota into a single market in the mid-1950s, this wouldn't be fully realized for another three decades, mainly because Dickinson is in the Mountain Time Zone. For most of its first decade on the air, KDIX-TV picked up what CBS programs it could under CBS' Extended Market Plan, which served as a go-between for non-interconnected stations. It also aired a few ABC and NBC shows out of pattern.

Then, in 1966, KOTA-TV in Rapid City planned to sign on KHSD-TV (channel 11), a satellite station in Lead, South Dakota; to extend its coverage into northeastern Wyoming and southeastern Montana. At the time, KOTA-TV held a joint affiliation with CBS and ABC, but slightly favored CBS. Stanley Deck, KDIX's general manager at the time, discovered that Dickinson was close enough to Lead that his engineers could easily get an acceptable signal from KHSD whenever CBS and ABC programming aired. He arranged with the Duhamel family, owners of KOTA, to provide network programming for KHSD. In addition, Deck purchased virtually all the stock in the Dickinson Radio and TV Corporation. The deal took effect when KHSD opened on November 2, 1966. Thus, for nearly a decade, KDIX was practically a separately-owned satellite of KOTA. Then on July 11, 1976; KEVN-TV opened in Rapid City and took the CBS affiliation away from KOTA. KDIX-TV still picked up ABC programming from KOTA, and was also able to pick up NBC as well since KOTA took on a secondary NBC affiliation when KEVN opened. However, its engineers now had to switch to KXMB's signal for CBS shows.

In 1983, Deck sold KDIX-TV to the Northern Prairies Broadcasting Company, which owned KOUS-TV (now KHMT) in Billings, and the calls were changed to KNDX. The new owners severed the station's ties with KOTA. Northern Prairies paid so little attention to KNDX that the station's signal quickly deteriorated to the point of unacceptability. With the station on the verge of closing down, the Reitens had to come to KNDX's rescue; they bought the station early in 1985 and changed the calls to KXMA-TV. (It would have been KXME, but Prairie Public Television objected.) Since then, KXMA has been a semi-satellite of KXMB.

After an ice storm on April 6, 1997 caused the KXJB-TV mast to collapse, some cable systems replaced KXJB with KXMB, either temporarily or permanently, to maintain CBS service.

Electronic news-gathering unit supporting KXMB and sister stations

In 2006, the stations began a web portal-like website called KX Net, with each station's website displaying a localized front page. The stations continue to be branded as "KX Television" and as "KX News" on the air, but also use the "KX Net" monkier on the air also. KXNet.com combined the previous domains kxma.com, kxmb.com, kxmc.com and kxmd.com under one umbrella. The original domains are still active. KXNet.com won the 2007 Teddy Award for Best Website and the 2007 Eric Sevareid Award for best website small market television in a six state region.

In July 2008, Reiten Television began a joint agreement to sell television commercial slots on both KXMB and KBMY, Bismarck's ABC affiliate owned by Forum Communications Company. KXMB houses sales and engineering personnel solely for KBMY's operations. A consequence of this agreement has enabled KBMY-DT to begin broadcasting in July 2008 directly from KXMB's station, bringing a digital ABC television signal to Bismarck.

A bobblehead of meteorologist "Too Tall Tom" Szymanski, made by KVLY-TV, his previous employer.

In October 2007, KXNet.com along with Midkota Solutions launched DakotaPolitics.com, a web site focusing on North Dakota political news coverage. DakotaPolitics featured profile information, voting records and some analysis. DakotaPolitics also launched weekly tracking polls for the 2008 elections. In 2008, KXNet.com became the first web site in North Dakota to deliver a live news broadcast over the Internet when they streamed a 1-hour special coverage of the 2008 Presidential Caucuses from Bismarck.

Programming[edit]

The North Dakota State Fair parade in Minot is aired live every July as well as a July 4 Parade in Mandan. KXMB and KXMA, along with sister stations KXMC-TV in Minot, North Dakota and KXMD-TV in Williston, North Dakota signs off every night at 1:05 a.m. CT/12:05 a.m. MT Tuesday-Saturday mornings and at 1:35 a.m. CT/12:35 a.m. MT on Sunday and Monday mornings; during the sign-offs are the national anthem and the national feed of CBS News Up To The Minute with Public Service Announcements, while weekends simulcast the local weather conditions of North Dakota.

News operation[edit]

KXMB produces local newscasts on weekdays at noon, 6 and 10 p.m. Weekend newscasts are produced at 6 and 10 p.m. on Saturdays, and 10 p.m. on Sundays. KXMC produces a morning show at 6 a.m. and co-produces a 5 p.m. newscast with KXMB, broadcast on all four stations. All of the local newscasts are broadcast in high definition.

For many years, KXMA placed inserts into KXMB's newscasts. However, recent cutbacks have resulted in KXMA's operations being largely merged with those of KXMB, and local inserts have been eliminated.

As a whole, KX Television has long trailed NBC North Dakota in the ratings by a significant margin; the main stations and their satellites are counted as one station for ratings and regulatory purposes. However, KX News Morning has recently surged well ahead of NBC North Dakota's Country Morning Today—the only time in recent memory that NBC North Dakota has lost consecutive ratings periods in any time slot.

On November 30, 2013, actor Will Ferrell, as a promotion for his film Anchorman 2, co-anchored the station's evening news as his character Ron Burgundy.[4]

News/station presentation[edit]

Newscast titles[edit]

  • KX 12 Reports (1970s?)
  • KX News (2004–present)

Station slogans[edit]

  • "Your Eye on Dakota" (2004–present)
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On-air staff[edit]

Current on-air staff[5][edit]

Anchors

  • Tom Gerhardt - weeknights at 5, 6 and 10 p.m.; also news director
  • Lauren Kalberer - weeknights at 5, 6 and 10 p.m.; also producer
  • Marci Narum - weekday mornings KX News Morning and weekdays at noon; also producer
  • Perry Olson - weekday mornings KX News Morning and weekdays at noon
  • Ron Burgundy - Saturdays at 6 and weekends at 10 p.m.[6]
  • Amber Schatz - Saturdays at 6 and weekends at 10 p.m.

KX Weather

  • Tom Szymanski - chief meteorologist; weeknights at 5, 6 and 10 p.m.
  • Joe Goldade - meteorologist; weekday mornings KX News Morning and weekdays at noon
  • Jared Piepenburg - meteorologist; Saturdays at 6 and weekends at 10 p.m.

Sports team

  • Tia Streeter - sports director; weeknights at 6 and 10 p.m.
  • Zach Hanley - sports anchor; Saturdays at 6 and weekends at 10 p.m., also sports reporter

Reporters

  • Sarah Gustin - agriculture reporter
  • Kate Keller - general assignment reporter
  • Megan Lowry - general assignment reporter
  • Donnell Preskey - general assignment reporter

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]