WDFX-TV

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WDFX-TV
Wdfx.png

Wdfx dt2.png
Ozark/Dothan, Alabama
Branding Fox 34 (general)
Fox 34 News (newscasts)
Bounce Wiregrass (on DT2)
Slogan WDFX Marks the Spot!
Channels Digital: 33 (UHF)
Virtual: 34 (PSIP)
Subchannels 34.1 Fox
34.2 Bounce TV
Network Fox
Owner Raycom Media
(WDFX License
Subsidiary, LLC)
First air date February 1991; 23 years ago (1991-02)
Call letters' meaning We're Dothan's FoX
Sister station(s) WSFA, WPGX, WTVM, WXTX, WAFF-TV, WBRC
Former callsigns WDAU (1991-1995)
Former channel number(s) Analog:
34 (UHF, 1991-2009)
Transmitter power 538 kW
Height 148 m
Class DT
Facility ID 32851
Transmitter coordinates 31°12′29.7″N 85°36′49.4″W / 31.208250°N 85.613722°W / 31.208250; -85.613722

WDFX-TV is the Fox-affiliated television station for Southeastern Alabama's Wiregrass Region. Licensed to Ozark, it broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 33 (or virtual channel 34.1 via PSIP) from a transmitter in unincorporated Wicksburg. The station can also be seen on Bright House Networks channel 11 as well as Comcast and Time Warner Cable channel 13 with HD on Bright House Networks digital channel 231, Time Warner Cable digital channel 213, and Comcast digital channel 434. Owned by Raycom Media, WDFX has studios on Ross Clark Circle/AL 210/U.S. 231 in Dothan. Syndicated programming on the station includes The Big Bang Theory, Judge Judy, Two and a Half Men, and The Dr. Oz Show among others.

Digital television[edit]

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming
34.1 720p 16:9 WDFX-DT Main WDFX-TV programming / Fox
34.2 480i 4:3 WDFX-D2 Bounce TV

History[edit]

The station launched as WDAU in February 1991. Airing an analog signal on UHF channel 34, it was the market's fourth television outlet to sign-on and has been with Fox since the very beginning. It was established after a small group of Ozark investors saw the market as being undeserved with the network and the need for a locally-based affiliate in the area. The call sign had been previously used on what is now CBS affiliate WYOU in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania (a sister station to rival ABC affiliate WDHN in Dothan).

The call letters changed to WDFX-TV on August 31, 1995 while owned by the Woods Communications Corporation of nearby Montgomery (controller of that market's Fox affiliate WCOV-TV). Interestingly, that company operated rival CBS affiliate WTVY in Dothan until 1995 when it was sold to Benedek Broadcasting. As a part of Woods Television, WDFX quickly grew in popularity.

It was bought out by Waitt Media in June 1999 and, under the company's ownership, moved to its current facility on Ross Clark Circle. This change resulted in its advertising sales and traffic departments being held together under the same room for the first time. On December 15, 2003, Raycom Media bought the station; two years later, WDFX became a sister station to NBC affiliate WSFA in Montgomery after Raycom acquired The Liberty Corporation. The big three outlet currently serves the Wiregrass Region as its de facto NBC affiliate.

News operation[edit]

News logo.

On January 7, 2008, WDFX began airing a nightly prime time newscast at 9 produced by WSFA in Montgomery. Originally airing for 35 minutes on weeknights, a weekend half-hour edition of Fox News at 9 began in Summer 2008. It was produced in conjunction with Montgomery's Fox outlet WCOV through a news share agreement. The show originated from a secondary set at WSFA's studios on East Delano Avenue; likewise there was a primary focus in coverage of the Montgomery area. However there were also localized news and sports contributions from two personalities based at WDFX's facility in Dothan (known on-air as the "Wiregrass Newsroom").

Although WSFA upgraded its local newscasts and primary set to high definition level on August 3, 2008, Fox News at 9 on WDFX and WCOV was not initially included in the change. It would not be until Spring 2010 that the prime time show would make the switch complete with an updated graphics package separate from local news programs seen WSFA. After WCOV's outsourcing contract with WSFA expired at the end of 2010, the former entered into a new agreement with another Mongomery big three affiliated station in order to specifically cover the Montgomery area.

As a result, WSFA transitioned its nightly prime time show (renamed The News at Nine) to its second digital subchannel (then affiliated with the Retro Television Network; now with Bounce TV) on January 1, 2011. The show's format remained mostly unchanged except for originating from WSFA's primary set. Eventually, at some point in time, WSFA added a simulcast of its weekday afternoon newscast at 4 to WDFX's schedule. This sixty minute broadcast, however, generally covers the greater Montgomery area. On September 10, 2012, WDFX began having competition to its prime time news at 9 with the introduction of a weeknight-only half-hour show on CW affiliate WTVY-DT3.

News team[edit]

Anchors

  • John O'Connor - weeknights at 4; also reporter
  • Mark Bullock - weeknights at 4:30; also investigative reporter
  • Sally Pitts - weeknights at 4 and 4:30; also reporter
  • Tametria Conner - weeknights at 9; also reporter
  • Samuel King - Saturdays; also investigative reporter
  • Jennifer Oravet - Sundays; also crime reporter

StormVision Meteorologists

  • Rich Thomas (NWA Seal of Approval) - Chief; Monday through Thursday at 9
  • Monica Tassoni - weeknights at 4 and 4:30
  • Eric Snitil - Fridays at 9 and weekends, also news reporter

Sports

  • Jeff Shearer - Sports Director; weeknights at 9
  • Derek Steyer - Assistant Sports Director; weekends, also sports reporter
  • Kim Smith - Wiregrass Newsroom (WDFX) sports and news reporter

Reporters

  • Max Reiss - Raycom Media Alabama politics
  • Hannah Lane - Wiregrass Newsroom (WDFX)
  • Melissa McKinney
  • Melissa Johnson
  • Bethany Wales
  • Valorie Lawson

External links[edit]