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Wausau/Rhinelander, Wisconsin
Branding NewsChannel 7
My TV Wausau (on DT2)
Slogan Your Local News and
Weather Authority
Channels Digital: 7 (VHF)
Virtual: 7 (PSIP)
Subchannels 7.1 CBS
7.2 MyNetworkTV
Jewelry TV (overnights)
7.3 Heroes & Icons
Translators 42 (UHF) W42DH-D Sayner/Vilas County
Network CBS
Owner Gray Television
(Gray Television
Licensee, LLC)
Founded October 23, 1954
Call letters' meaning phonetically short for WauSAu, Wisconsin;
also similar to original calls
Sister station(s) WEAU, WMTV
Former callsigns WSAU-TV (1954-1981)
Former channel number(s) 7 (VHF analog, 1954-2009)
40 (UHF digital)
57 W57AR Sayner/Vilas County (UHF analog)
Former affiliations All secondary:
DuMont (1954-1956)
NBC (1954-1965)
ABC (1954-1966)
Transmitter power 72 kW
Height 373 m
Class DT
Facility ID 6867
Transmitter coordinates 44°55′14.2″N 89°41′28.7″W / 44.920611°N 89.691306°W / 44.920611; -89.691306

WSAW-TV is the CBS-affiliated television station for North-Central Wisconsin's Northern Highland. Licensed to Wausau, it broadcasts a high definition digital signal on VHF channel 7 from a transmitter on Rib Mountain. [1] Owned by Gray Television, the station has studios on Grand Avenue/U.S. 51 in Wausau. Syndicated programming on WSAW includes Inside Edition, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire among others.

To serve the Northwoods area of Northern Wisconsin, it operates a digital fill-in translator in Sayner (W42DH-D) that also covers Eagle River. This airs a high definition signal on UHF channel 42 (or virtual channel 7.1 via PSIP) from a transmitter on Razorback Road in unincorporated Vilas County (north of Sayner). The low-powered repeater also serves the western portion of Michigan's Upper Peninsula although the broadcasting radius is limited to Marenisco and Watersmeet.

Digital channels[edit]

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[2]
7.1 1080i 16:9 WSAW-DT Main WSAW programming / CBS
7.2 480i 4:3 MyTV "My TV Wausau" / Jewelry TV (overnights)
7.3 TBA Heroes & Icons


The station launched on October 23, 1954 as WSAU-TV and was a sister station to WSAU-AM 550 and the original WSAU-FM 95.5 (now WIFC). It was originally owned by a consortium of North-Central Wisconsin newspapers that also included the Wausau Daily Tribune-Herald. Channel 7 originally operated from the Plumer Mansion, a Richardsonian Romanesque-style building, that was located on North 5th Street in Wausau and torn down in 1972 one year after the station moved to its current home.[3]

The Plumer Mansion's castle-like exterior and a suit of armor displayed in the mansion inspired the station's graphic designer, Sid Kyler, to design a medieval-style "7" logo along with an accompanying cartoon mascot, the fully armored knight "Sir Seven." [4] The logo and mascot served as representations of the station for several decades. Sometime in the 1960s, the station's original owners sold it to Forward Communications. Forward sold off channel 7 in 1981 and the station adopted its current calls, WSAW-TV. By the late-1980s, WSAW's logo would change to a square-style "7" which would be replaced by a stylized version of the circle 7 logo in 2006.

It has been affiliated with CBS since its beginning although the station did have secondary affiliations with DuMont (until that network expired in 1956), ABC (until WAOW signed-on in 1965), and NBC (until WAEO launched in 1966). On September 5, 2006, WSAW added MyNetworkTV to a second digital subchannel. Its broadcasts have been digital-only since before midnight on February 16, 2009 when the analog sign-off featured a "good night" from Sir Seven.[5] On April 2, 2011, WSAW became the first station in the market to broadcast local newscast in high definition.[6] With the switch to HD came a revamp of their news set and new graphics.[7]


External links[edit]