|Little Rock, Arkansas|
|City of license||Little Rock|
|Branding||Fox 16 (general)
Fox 16 News (newscasts)
|Slogan||Arkansas's Breaking News Leader (newscasts)|
|Channels||Digital: 30 (UHF)
Virtual: 16 (PSIP)
(operated by Nexstar Broadcasting Group)
(Mission Broadcasting, Inc.)
|First air date||June 26, 1983|
|Call letters' meaning||Little Rock Television|
|Sister station(s)||KARK-TV, KARZ-TV, KASN|
|Former channel number(s)||16 (UHF analog, 1983-2009)|
|Former affiliations||Independent (1983-1990)|
|Transmitter power||1,000 kW|
KLRT-TV is the Fox-affiliated television station for central Arkansas that is licensed to Little Rock. Branded as Fox 16, it broadcasts a high-definition digital signal on UHF channel 30 (or virtual channel 16.1 via PSIP) from a transmitter on Shinall Mountain near the Chenal Valley section of Little Rock. Owned by Mission Broadcasting, KLRT-TV is sister to CW affiliate KASN. Both television stations are operated through outsourcing agreements by the Nexstar Broadcasting Group, making them sisters to NBC affiliate KARK-TV and MyNetworkTV affiliate KARZ-TV. All four share studios on West Capitol Avenue in Downtown Little Rock, one block east of the Arkansas State Capitol. The station can also be seen on Comcast Xfinity channel 13 and in high definition on digital channel 434.
KLRT signed on-the-air on June 26, 1983. It was Arkansas' first independent station as well as the first new commercial station to sign-on in Little Rock in almost thirty years, it was originally locally owned by Little Rock Communications Associates and operated by Scollard Communications.
During KLRT's early independent years, it slogan was "Prime All The Time". The original offices and studios were on West Markham Street at the southeast corner of Bowman Road in Western Little Rock. It was the first of Little Rock's television stations to maintain a studio outside the downtown area and remains so today.
In 1988, then-Fox affiliate KASN negotiated a merger with eventual sister station KLRT that would have moved KASN's Fox network affiliation and syndicated programming to KLRT, with KASN becoming a Home Shopping Network affiliate. KLRT then abruptly pulled out of the merger deal with KASN, notifying the station by fax of its nullification of the deal on its part. However in April 1990, Fox chose to have its affiliation moved to the higher-rated KLRT, despite the fact that the deal made it so that KASN would continue as a Fox station if the merger fell through. KASN owner MMC Television filed a lawsuit against KLRT owners LRCA/Scollard due to the failed merger, alleging civil conspiracy, misappropriation of trade secrets, interfering with business relationships, breach of contract and fraud.
In 1996, KLRT was sold to Clear Channel Communications through the company's acquisition of the station's then-owners US Radio. Over the years, KLRT and KASN became properties of Clear Channel Communications, along with various radio stations serving the market. KLRT vacated its original studios and moved southeast into the Clear Channel Metroplex (a converted former Sam's Club) on Colonel Glenn Road east of Interstate 430 in West Little Rock where all of Clear Channel's Central Arkansas properties were consolidated. The original KLRT building was razed shortly after KLRT's departure. Today a local branch of National Bank of Arkansas, an office of its mortgage division, and a San Francisco Bread Company restaurant now occupy the former studio site.
On April 20, 2007, Clear Channel entered into an agreement to sell its entire television stations group to Providence Equity Partners. KLRT's broadcast tower remains atop Chenal Mountain in Western Little Rock. Following the sale of KLRT and KASN to Providence Equity Partners, both stations remain in the same complex with the radio stations still owned by Clear Channel. The special events portion of the site is now referred to as the Metroplex Events Center.
On July 19, 2012, Newport Television reached a deal to sell 22 of its 27 stations to Nexstar Broadcasting Group, Sinclair Broadcast Group and Cox Media Group. KLRT-TV and KASN are among the twelve that would be sold to Nexstar. However, since Nexstar already owns KARK-TV and KARZ-TV, the licenses for KLRT and KASN would be transferred to Mission Broadcasting to comply with Federal Communications Commission regulations prohibiting common ownership between two of the four largest stations in a single market. Given Nexstar's termination of the Fox affiliations of several of its stations during the past two years, it is ironic that KLRT is one of two Fox affiliates that are being picked up by either Nexstar or Mission; the other is WJKT in Jackson, Tennessee (although that station is controlled by and based out of Memphis, Tennessee's ABC affiliate WATN-TV, which was also bought by Nexstar). As of December 3, 2012, the deal was completed for ten of the twelve stations to Nexstar, while KLRT and KASN were still awaiting FCC approval. The FCC granted its approval on December 10. The deal was consummated on January 3, 2013.
On February 2, the stations' operations were consolidated with KARK and KARZ at KARK's downtown Little Rock studios, making this the first time where four full-power television stations in one market, carrying four of the six largest English-language networks (NBC, Fox, CW and MyNetworkTV) being controlled by one company; and all four being housed in one facility. KLRT's former news set would be re-purposed by sister station WATN-TV at its new studio facilities, which officially launched on June 1, 2013.
|Channel||PSIP Short Name||Aspect||Video||Programming|
|16.1||KLRT DT||16:9||720p||Main KLRT-TV programming / Fox|
KLRT-TV requested to transmit in digital only, effective February 17, 2009. After it shut down its analog signal on that date, the original scheduled completion date of the nationwide analog television shutdown, which Congress had moved the previous month to June 12, 2009, KLRT-DT remained on its pre-transition digital channel number, 30, using PSIP to display its virtual channel as 16.
KLRT presently broadcasts a total of 17 hours of local news each week (with three hours on weekdays and one hour each on weekends), which is well behind the weekly output of the Big Three network affiliates in the area.
Prior to its full-scale broadcasts, KLRT provided some brief news updates and public affairs programming during its earliest years on the air. Early weather information was once presented by former KKYK-FM and KURB morning disc jockey and current KTHV news anchor Craig O'Neill. He included a vocal rendition of his radio character "Sherman Bonner, the World's Only Human Themometer" to voiceover some of the weather introduction. News information was presented by Bill Powell (formerly of KTHV) and Linda Gilliam on an individual basis in the early years. Ron Breeding, who then primarily worked with radio station KARN-FM (currently working with the University of Arkansas at Little Rock via KUAR) provided news and later weather information for the station in the late-1980s. On September 4, 2000, the station began airing "Fox First Weather", a five-minute weathercast that ran until shortly before KLRT's newscasts debuted.
The station began airing a nightly hour-long prime time newscast at 9 p.m. on March 28, 2004. In 2007, it began airing two half-hour newscasts on weeknights at 5 and 5:30 p.m. On January 18, 2010, KLRT debuted a 10 p.m. newscast on weeknights airing immediately following the 9 p.m. newscast which competes head-to-head against the big three stations; this addition increased KLRT's weekdaily news output to 2½ hours. Fellow Fox affiliate and Tulsa sister station KOKI also launched a 10 p.m. newscast on that date. In the future, it is likely that the station will add weekday morning and midday newscasts.
On April 5, 2011, KLRT became the second television station in the Little Rock market to broadcast their local newscasts in high definition, preceded only by KTHV. With the switch to HD, KLRT introduced new graphics, music, and logos. The music and logo currently used is the typical style found on Fox owned-and-operated stations and some affiliates nationwide (although the Fox searchlights are noticeably absent from the station logo unlike other stations that use the Fox O&O graphics). The new FOX O&O graphics are the same as those used on KSWB-TV, KOKI, WPMT and WAWS.
Following the consolidation of the station's operations into the KARK studios, KLRT cancelled its 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. newscasts, while retaining newscasts at 5:30 p.m. weekdays and 9 p.m. seven nights a week. Additionally on February 4, 2013, KLRT became the fourth station in the Little Rock television market to have a morning newscast, airing from 7 to 9 a.m. weekdays.
- Newscap 16 (1983–mid 1980s)
- Fox First Weather (10 p.m. weather program; 2000–2004)
- Fox 16 News (2004–present)
- "Prime All The Time" (1983–late 1980s)
- "First. Complete. Local." (2004–2006; also used by sister station KOKI-TV in Tulsa)
- "Right Here. Right Now" (2006–2008)
- "Arkansas' New Choice for News" (2008–2011)
- "Arkansas's Breaking News Leader" (2011–present)
- Extreme by Stephen Arnold Music (2004–2009)
- FOX Affiliate News Theme by OSI Music (2009–present)
+ denotes personnel seen exclusively on KLRT
- + Kevin Kelly - weeknights at 5:30 and 9 p.m.
- Susanne Brunner Weekends 9 pm
- + Donna Terrell - weeknights at 5:30 and 9 p.m.
- Deedra Wilson - weekday mornings Good Day Arkansas (7-9 a.m.); also reporter
- Fox 16 Pinpoint Weather
- +Jeff Baskin (AMS Seal of Approval) - chief meteorologist; weeknights at 5:30 and 9 p.m.
- Greg Dee (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval; member, NWA) - meteorologist; weekday mornings (7-9 a.m.)
- Natalie Walters - meteorologist; weekends at 9 p.m.
- Sports team
- + Wes Moore - sports director; weeknights at 5:30 and 9 p.m.
- Jason Snavely - sports anchor; weekends at 9 p.m., also sports reporter
- HUBERT TATE - GENERAL ASSIGNMENT REPORTER
- Dustin Barnes - general assignment reporter
- Josh Berry - general assignment reporter
- Roby Brock - business and financial analyst; also Talk Business host
- David Goins - general assignment reporter
- Brittney Johnson - general assignment reporter
- Jocelyn Tovar - general assignment reporter
- Melissa Schroeder- general assignment reporter
- Drew Petrimpulx - general assignment reporter
- Life in the Fox lane; management of television stations KLRT, after Fox Broadcasting affiliation, and KASN 38, after losing Fox affiliation, Arkansas Business, (via HighBeam Research), February 18, 1991.
- Slicing the pie thin; independent TV advertising shares already are small; now channels 16 and 38 are cutting each other, Arkansas Business, (via HighBeam Research), January 29, 1990.
- The FCC cleared Clear Channel Communications Inc. to buy TV and radio stations in Little Rock, Ark., and Memphis, Arkansas Business, (via HighBeam Research), May 20, 1996.
- Million Dollar Metroplex; Clear Channel Communications Inc. buys studio, Arkansas Business, (via HighBeam Research), March 20, 2000.
- "Clear Channel Agrees to Sell Television Station Group to Providence Equity Partners" (Press release). Clear Channel Communications. 2007-04-20. Retrieved 2007-04-20.
- Newport Sells 22 Stations For $1 Billion, TVNewsCheck, July 19, 2012.
- Updated: Mission Closes $60M Deal for KLRT, KASN; Chuck Spohn Out as General Manager Arkansas Business, January 4, 2013
- "Almost 30 Lose Jobs at KARK, KLRT as TV Owners Consolidate". Arkansas Business. January 29, 2013. Retrieved January 29, 2013.
- "Nexstar Readies Major Memphis Overhaul". TVNewsCheck. May 30, 2013. Retrieved May 30, 2013.
- Fox First Weather, Arkansas Business, (via HighBeam Research), August 28, 2000.
- It's on at 9 p.m., Arkansas Business, (via HighBeam Research), March 29, 2004.
- Alive at five; KLRT-TV to add second newscast this spring, Arkansas Business, (via HighBeam Research), January 15, 2007.
- Outtakes, Arkansas Business (via The Free Library), January 17, 2011.
- Tulsa’s New Energy, Broadcasting & Cable, October 25, 2010.
- KLRT Prime All The Time Promos
- FOX16 News Bios
- Fox16.com - Official Website
- Query the FCC's TV station database for KLRT-TV
- KLRT Station Profile & Public Inspection Files
- KLRT.com History
- Fox16.com History