|Slogan||The Christian Alternative|
|Channels||Digital: 22 (UHF)
Virtual: 30 (PSIP)
|Translators||W04CW 4 Tigerton/Marion (analog)
W26EE-D Wittenburg, Wisconsin UHF 26 / virtual 30 (PSIP)
|Owner||VCY America, Inc.|
|First air date||January 11, 1983|
|Call letters' meaning||Wisconsin
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
30 (UHF, 1983–2009)
|Former affiliations||FamilyNet (?–2009; still airs recorded programming from former Southern Baptist Convention ownership period)|
|Transmitter power||196 kW|
|Public license information:||Profile
WVCY-TV, virtual channel 30 (UHF digital channel 22), is a religious independent television station located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States. The station is owned by VCY America, Inc. WVCY maintains studio facilities located on West Kilbourn Avenue in Milwaukee, and its transmitter is located on North Humboldt Boulevard in Milwaukee's Estabrook Park neighborhood (on the Milwaukee Public Television broadcast tower). WVCY is also carried on cable television throughout southeastern Wisconsin and invokes must-carry statuses for mandatory carriage.
The station first signed on the air on January 11, 1983; it has operated as a religious station since its sign-on. On May 23, 1994, Fox signed an affiliation deal with New World Communications to shift the network affiliations of the company's stations in 12 markets to Fox starting in the fall of 1994. Locally, the deal included WITI (channel 6), which would switch from CBS to Fox in December 1994. With only months to find an affiliate, CBS approached WVCY's owners to purchase the station. Offers to affiliate with the network had already been turned down by NBC affiliate WTMJ-TV (channel 4), ABC affiliate WISN-TV (channel 12, which had been affiliated with CBS from 1961 to 1977), WVTV (channel 18; which had earlier been a CBS owned-and-operated station in the 1950s), WCGV (channel 24) and WJJA (channel 49, now WMLW-TV). WVCY's owners decided to reject the offer and retain ownership of the station, resulting in CBS then aligning itself with then low-profile independent WDJT-TV (channel 58), which had also initially declined an offer to affiliate with CBS, just days before WITI switched to Fox.
WVCY formerly had a sister station in the Green Bay market, Suring-licensed WSCO (channel 14), which VCY America owned from 1993 to 1997. That year, VCF sold WSCO to Paxson Communications (the forerunner to Ion Media Networks) in order to concentrate on its Milwaukee operations (that station is now WCWF, which serves as Green Bay's CW affiliate).
In 1980, VCY was granted a construction permit to operate a station on UHF channel 43 in Tomah under the callsign WVCX-TV, which would serve the La Crosse/Eau Claire market. However, that construction permit expired in 1985.
In 2008, VCY acquired W04CW (channel 4) in Tigerton/Marion, an area located between Green Bay and Wausau well outside of the Milwaukee market, which is used as a repeater of WVCY's programming. On July 18, 2012, VCY America was granted a digital broadcast license for W26EE-D (UHF 26 / virtual 30) in Wittenburg, Wisconsin.
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|30.1||480i||4:3||WVCY-TV||Main WVCY-TV programming|
WVCY-TV shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 30, on February 17, 2009, the original date in which full-power television stations in the United States were to transition from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 22. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 30. The station does not broadcast any digital subchannel services and broadcasts its main feed in the 480i format for transmission and expense concerns.
Although WVCY operates under a commercial license, the station chooses not to accept advertising and asks for viewer support through donations via the station and VCY America Radio instead for funding. Unlike other religious television stations, it does not carry Contemporary Christian music programming, or signs and wonders televangelists (such as Benny Hinn). The station is unique for carrying a top-of-the-hour text weather forecast as part of its station identification, a practice long discontinued by most commercial television stations.
The station does air some programming from FamilyNet, though since the network's 2009 purchase by a company owned by televangelist Robert A. Schuller and subsequent 2013 conversion into a secular rural-focused network by the Rural Media Group, it seems to have refused any new programming from the network; FamilyNet shows and films airing on WVCY show the network's pre-2008 logo, suggesting they were recorded before then and retained in the station's tape archive for later use. VCY America's radio network has also discontinued programs or affiliations in the past that have changed to more "mainstream" religious views or have financial appeals that go beyond the conservative views of VCY, and both television and radio operations refuse any programming featuring modern Contemporary Christian music. WVCY-TV also carries a disclaimer on CBN News broadcasts disclaiming that CBN's views are not that of VCY America. A limited amount of programming from the Christian Television Network also airs on the station.
WVCY also carries some government hearings and presidential speeches, along with simulcasts of state political debates produced by the state's public television organizations, and is the last commercial station in the state to continue to program weekday afternoon children's programming, a block that includes a rotation of series including Davey and Goliath, Becky's Barn and Sunshine Factory.
Besides Wisconsin Public Television's stations during school recesses and vacations, WVCY was the final commercial station in the state until the start of 2010 to sign-off the air on a nightly basis.
- "Fox Gains 12 Stations in New World Deal". Chicago Sun-Times. May 23, 1994. Retrieved June 1, 2013.
- VCY America sells stations, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, May 30, 1997. Retrieved from http://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/1997/06/02/tidbits.html.
- REC Broadcast Query. Retrieved from http://cdbs.recnet.com/fmq.php?facid=&call=dwvcx&ccode=1&latd=&lond=&city=&state=&country=US&zip=&party=&party_type=LICEN&jaws=0.
- Application Search Details fcc.gov. Accessed July 19, 2012
- RabbitEars TV Query for WVCY
- "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and Second Rounds" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-03-24.
- Cuprisin, Tim (February 5, 2009). Channels 24, 30 will shut down analog signals and go digital Feb. 17. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, February 5, 2009. Retrieved from http://www.jsonline.com/entertainment/tvradio/39177437.html.
- FCC (May 5, 2009). Station Search Details – WVCY-TV. Retrieved from http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/cgi-bin/ws.exe/prod/cdbs/pubacc/prod/sta_det.pl?Facility_id=72342.
- WVCY-TV official website
- History of Milwaukee television
- Query the FCC's TV station database for WVCY
- Query TV Fool's coverage map for WVCY
- Query the FCC's TV station database for W04CW
- Query TV Fool's coverage map for W04CW
- Query the FCC's TV station database for W26EE-D
- Query TV Fool's coverage map for W26EE-D
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on WVCY-TV