|This article does not cite any references or sources. (August 2012)|
|New Orleans, Louisiana|
|Channels||Digital: 21 (UHF)
Virtual: 20 (PSIP)
|Owner||LeSEA Broadcasting Corporation
(LeSEA Broadcasting of New Orleans, Inc.)
|First air date||October 20, 1994|
|Call letters' meaning||World
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
20 (UHF, 1994-2009)
|Transmitter power||300 kW|
WHNO is a television station in New Orleans, Louisiana, broadcasting locally on virtual channel 20 as a LeSEA owned-and-operated station. As an affiliate of LeSEA, the station airs a mix of Christian, family-friendly, classic and local sports programming. Additionally, WHNO also owns and operates SportsNOLA.com, an Louisiana independent sports website.
The station's digital signal on UHF 21, is multiplexed:
|20.1||480i||4:3||WHNO-D1||WHNO Main programming / Religious / Local sports|
|20.3||WHNO-D3||World Harvest Television / Religious and classics|
1958 - Hurricane Katrina
The channel 20 allocation was at first occupied by WJMR-TV in 1958; WJMR (now WVUE) changed frequencies twice before settling on channel 8 in 1970. Since then the construction permit of channel 20 dates back to the 1970s. The permit changed hands many times over the years, other construction permits for channels 38 and 49 were dropped in and signed on, while channel 20 remained vacant. In 1991, LeSEA Broadcasting purchased the construction permit and began building the station.
The station went on the air on Monday, October 10, 1994. WHNO signed on with a mix of Christian, syndicated family programs and movies.
As in the other LeSEA markets, the station declined to take the open UPN affiliation at the network's 1995 launch due to a conflict with its core programming values, allowing WUPL to launch with that network affiliation.
Because of WWL-TV (channel 4)'s long-time preference for local news in the morning, channel 20 carried CBS's morning shows (the first incarnation of CBS This Morning and its successor, The Early Show) from 1998–2002, and in 2000 began to program Christian paid programming in some off-peak hours.
WHNO's studios sustained damage following Hurricane Katrina. The station was off the air but offered the LeSEA national network satellite feed to cable systems and satellite providers. In November Channel 20 returned to the air carrying this feed as well. On December 3, 2005, WHNO resumed a local schedule and advertising.
2007 through Present
As of 2012, WHNO has a multicast programming offering airing its primary local programming on WHNO 20.1 and World Harvest Family (LeSEA's National Network) on WHNO 20.2. Additionally, on August 24, 2011, LeSEA Broadcasting acquired SportsNOLA.com from NewOrleans.com.
Peter Sumrall, son of founder Dr. Lester Sumrall, is the President of LeSEA, Inc. In May 2007, Sumrall hired veteran television and cable manager Dean Powery to manage WHNO and its local assets. Powery restored the WHNO staffing levels and programming offering from its post-Katrina low to a robust, competitive station in the New Orleans DMA. Powery also reconnected with local ministries, added updated syndicated programming and local college football games to the WHNO programming offering and expanded WHNO's production capabilities.
In 2010, WHNO hired veteran sports journalist and personality Ken Berthelot to expand WHNO's sports programming. With over 40 years in sports, Berthelot quickly put together a five hour, Monday-Friday sports programming block covering college and high school sports. In September 2012, Berthelot expanded WHNO's local sports programming block to ten hours per week (Monday-Friday, 5-7pm) to counter program and compete with the fluid local market news audience. On August 24, 2011, Powery oversaw the acquisition of SportsNOLA.com. The acquisition of SportsNOLA.com added veteran sports journalist Ken Trahan and more than 20 local sports contributors.
LeSEA offers a mix of Christian (local and national ministry programs), family-friendly, classic and local sports programming. In 2012, WHNO began airing High School football, baseball and basketball games again for the first time since Hurricane Katrina. WHNO joined the Southland Conference Television Network in Sept. 2012, which includes games from nearby Southeastern Louisiana University and Nicholls State University.
- WHNO.com - Official Website
- Query the FCC's TV station database for WHNO
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on WHNO-TV