NBC Montana

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NBC Montana logo.png
MeTV Montana.png
KECI: Missoula, Montana
KCFW: Kalispell, Montana
KTVM: Butte / Bozeman, Montana
United States
Branding KECI 13 / KCFW 9 / KTVM 6
NBC Montana
Slogan Getting the Facts Right
Channels Digital: KECI: 13 (VHF)
Subchannels xx.1 NBC
xx.1 Me-TV
xx.3 Movies!
Affiliations NBC (secondary until c.1970)
Me-TV (DT2; 2011-present)
Movies! (DT3; 2013-present)
Owner Bonten Media Group, LLC
(BlueStone License Holdings, Inc.)
First air date KECI: July 1, 1954 (1954-07-01)
KCFW: June 10, 1968 (1968-06-10)
KTVM: May 12, 1970 (1970-05-12)
Call letters' meaning KECI:
Columbia Falls
(the three largest towns in its broadcast area)
TeleVision Montana
Former callsigns KECI:
KGVO-TV (1954-1957, 1964-1978)
KMSO-TV (1957-1964)
KCFW: none
KTVM: none
Former channel number(s) Analog:
13 (VHF, 1954-2009)
9 (VHF, 1968-2009)
6 (VHF, 1970-2009)
Former affiliations Primary:
CBS (1954-c.1970)
ABC (1954-1991)
PBS (per program, 1976-1984)
This TV (until 2013)
Transmitter power KECI: 30 kW
KCFW: 2.5 kW
KTVM: 11.2 kW
Height KECI: 610 m
KCFW: 850 m
KTVM: 591.3 m
Facility ID KECI: 18084
KCFW: 18079
KTVM: 18066
Transmitter coordinates KECI:
47°1′2.1″N 114°0′50.6″W / 47.017250°N 114.014056°W / 47.017250; -114.014056 (KECI-TV)
48°0′48″N 114°21′59″W / 48.01333°N 114.36639°W / 48.01333; -114.36639 (KCFW-TV)
46°0′27″N 112°26′33″W / 46.00750°N 112.44250°W / 46.00750; -112.44250 (KTVM-TV)
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: / KCFW-TV / KTVM-TV Profile
Website www.nbcmontana.com

NBC Montana is a network of three television stations in western Montana, all affiliated with NBC.

The flagship station is KECI-TV in Missoula, broadcasting on channel 13. It includes two semi-satellites: KCFW-TV, channel 9 in Kalispell and KTVM-TV, channel 6 in Butte. It also serves Bozeman via Class A translator KDBZ-CD, channel 42. KDBZ directly repeats KTVM.

The stations air the same programming most of the time, but KCFW and KTVM air their own commercials and identifications, as well as partially separate local newscasts.

The combined signal of the three full-power stations and numerous low-power transmitters provides at least Grade B coverage of approximately 45 percent of the state. The stations reach an estimated 200,000 households. The coverage area stretches from Salmon, Idaho through Helena to Bozeman in the east. It also includes parts of Alberta, Canada near the U.S.-Canada border.

KECI's studio is located on West Main Street in downtown Missoula, KCFW is based on 1st Avenue in downtown Kallispell, while KTVM is based on Dewey Avenue in Butte.


KECI logo used until 2014

KECI hit the airwaves on July 1, 1954 as KGVO-TV, owned by Montana broadcasting pioneer Arthur Mosby and his Western Broadcasting Company along with KGVO radio. It shared a studio with its radio sister on West Main Street in downtown Missoula. For a few years in the late 1950s and early 1960s it was known as KMSO-TV, but reverted to KGVO-TV in 1964.

KTVM logo used until 2014

Originally, the station carried programming from all three networks, but was a primary CBS affiliate owing to its radio sister's long affiliation with CBS radio. It was the first television station in Montana to be interconnected to the main networks (via a private relay from Spokane). While it was known as KMSO-TV, it was a member of the Skyline Network (now Montana Television Network), along with KXLF-TV in Butte, KOOK-TV in Billings (now KTVQ), and KFBB-TV in Great Falls.

KTVM logo used until 2014

Then in March 1966, shortly after KFBB-TV switched over to ABC, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) combined Missoula and Butte into a single television market, and KGVO-TV became the combined market's primary CBS affiliate, with a secondary ABC affiliation. However, by the early 1970s, Missoula and Butte had broken off into separate markets again, and channel 13 was a primary NBC affiliate, sharing ABC with KPAX-TV.[1] The switch may have occurred as early as KPAX' sign-on in 1970.

Channel 13 took its current calls in 1978 after KGVO radio was sold off, but is still based in the West Main Street studio. The station offered a few PBS programs, particularly Sesame Street, from 1976 until Montana PBS opened in 1984. It also continued to run ABC in off-hours until KTMF signed on in 1991.

KCFW signed on in 1968 as a semi-satellite of KGVO-TV. It is the only full-power station in the Flathead. KTVM was added in 1970, also as a semi-satellite of KGVO-TV. The Bozeman repeater signed on in 1990 as K42BZ. In 2014, it was upgraded to Class A status as KDBZ-CD.

Digital television[edit]

Digital channels[edit]

The station's digital signal is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[2][3][4]
xx.1 1080i 16:9 KECI-DT
Main programming / NBC
xx.2 480i 4:3 ME-TV Me-TV
xx.3 ThisTV Movies!

Analog-to-digital conversion[edit]

KECI-TV, KCFW-TV & KTVM-TV shut down all analog signals on June 12, 2009, the official date in which full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital channel allocations post-transition are as follows:[5][6]

  • KECI-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 13; the station's digital signal relocated from its pre-transition UHF channel 40 to VHF channel 13.
  • KCFW-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 9; the station's digital signal relocated from its pre-transition UHF channel 38 to VHF channel 9.
  • KTVM-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 6; the station's digital signal relocated from its pre-transition UHF channel 33 to VHF channel 6.

Notable former on-air staff[edit]


In addition to KDBZ, KECI/NBC Montana operates the following translators.


External links[edit]