|Channels||Digital: 30 (UHF)|
Virtual: 5 (PSIP)
|Translators||K19FX-D (19) Laramie, WY|
(Gray Television Licensee, LLC)
|Founded||March 22, 1954|
|Call letters' meaning||Greater Wyoming Network|
|Former callsigns||KFBC-TV (1954–1972)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog: 5 (VHF, 1954–2009)|
|Transmitter power||459 kW|
|Height||162 m (531 ft)|
|Public license information||Profile|
KGWN-TV is a CBS-affiliated television station licensed to Cheyenne, Wyoming, United States. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 30 (or virtual channel 5 via PSIP) from a transmitter in unincorporated Laramie County (west of Cheyenne) between I-80/U.S. 30 and WYO 225. Owned by Gray Television, KGWN has studios on East Lincolnway/East 14th Street/I-80 Business/U.S. 30 in Cheyenne. The station also operates a digital fill-in translator, K19FX-D (channel 19), in Laramie from a transmitter in unincorporated Albany County near the Medicine Bow – Routt National Forest's northwestern boundary.
KGWN operates an NBC affiliate on its second digital subchannel. Most programming, including news, on this subchannel initially came from sister station KCWY-DT of Casper, the NBC affiliate for most of Wyoming; it operates a low-powered analog satellite in Cheyenne, KCHY-LP. However, it branded as "NBC Cheyenne", and aired separate legal identifications and local commercial inserts. As of October 2017[update], channel 5.2 is a simulcast of KNEP in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, itself a semi-satellite of KNOP-TV from North Platte.
KGWN operates the area's CW affiliate on a third digital subchannel, which carries the branding "Cheyenne CW". The channel is carried in Wyoming on Charter Spectrum channel 2 and in Nebraska on Spectrum channel 18.
KSTF in Scottsbluff operates as a semi-satellite of KGWN. This station broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 29 (or virtual channel 10 via PSIP) from a transmitter along N-71 at the Scotts Bluff–Sioux county line. It can also be seen locally in Nebraska on Spectrum channel 6. The station is a full-time simulcast of KGWN except for preempting Dr. Phil on weeknights in favor of Recipe.tv and Justice for All with Judge Cristina Perez. (Dr. Phil is available to Scottsbluff viewers on Gray sister station KNEP-DT2, a satellite of Rapid City, South Dakota-based ABC affiliate KOTA-TV.) KSTF also airs separate legal IDs and commercials during all programming. Although KSTF's master control and most internal operations are based out of KGWN's Cheyenne facility, the station maintains an advertising sales office on North 10th Street/N-71 Business in Gering, Nebraska. There is no separate web address for KSTF, but Nebraska-specific headlines are provided through KGWN's website.
The station signed on the air on March 22, 1954 as KFBC-TV airing an analog signal on VHF channel 5. It was owned by the McCraken family along with the Wyoming State Leader-Tribune and Wyoming Eagle (later merged as Wyoming Tribune Eagle) and KFBC radio (1240 AM). It is Wyoming's oldest television station. For over 30 years, it was the only commercial station in eastern Wyoming. As such, it carried programming from all four major networks of the time (CBS, NBC, ABC, and DuMont). However, it was initially a primary ABC affiliate. That may have seemed unusual as Cheyenne has always been a rather small market. In most other small markets, ABC was usually relegated to secondary status due to being the smallest and weakest network. However, KFBC radio had been an ABC Radio affiliate for many years. Additionally, there had been some speculation Cheyenne would eventually be collapsed into the Denver market since the area is only a few miles from the Colorado border.
In 1972, the McCrackens were forced to break up their media empire due to an FCC rule that barred one person from owning the sole newspaper, radio station and television station in a city. They sold their television stations to Wyneco Communications, owned by Toledo-based attorney Edward Lamb, which changed the call letters of the flagship station to KYCU-TV. On July 11, 1976, it switched its primary affiliation to ABC and dropped all NBC programming. KEVN-TV signed on in Rapid City that day as a full-time ABC affiliate, and KYCU/KSTF felt obliged to fill the ABC void in Scottsbluff, as KOTA-TV in Rapid City and its Scottsbluff satellite, KDUH-TV (now KNEP), were primary NBC affiliates with a secondary CBS affiliation. However, Cheyenne viewers were still able to view the full schedules of all the three major networks because, for many years, cable systems supplemented the area with Denver stations. Wyneco sold the station to Burke Broadcasting in 1983. When KOTA/KDUH switched to ABC in June 1984, KYCU/KSTF switched to CBS primary, NBC secondary.
Burke Broadcasting sold KYCU to Stauffer Communications in 1986, who changed its call sign to the current KGWN-TV on New Year's Day 1987. The station began phasing out NBC programming in the early-1980s, dropping the network entirely in 1987 when KKTU (now KQCK) signed-on as a satellite of KTWO-TV in Casper. ABC programming disappeared from the schedule by 1988. When Stauffer merged with Morris Communications in 1996, KGWN and most of the rest of Stauffer's television holdings went to Benedek Broadcasting. That company went bankrupt in 2001 (it merged with Gray Television a year later) and KGWN was sold to Chelsey Broadcasting. In 2003, the station was acquired by SagamoreHill Broadcasting.
After having been dropped from the cable system in Northern Colorado around 1995, KGWN took action to entice cable systems to carry the station in 2005. The station had talk to Comcast about getting on its Northern Colorado system in early 2005 to no avail. KGWN was talking in August to Colorado Eagles hockey team owner about broadcasting their games. By October, the station had opened a bureau in Fort Collins with two sale representatives and a reporter. US Cable agreed to carry the station beginning on November 1. The Eagles team and the station agreed to its first carriage deal for a single playoff game with the Oklahoma City Blazers on April 2, 2006, which was broadcast via Channel 5's Cheyenne transmitter. By June 2006, a Northern Colorado newscast is airing on channel 5. In early March 2007, the station filed a case with the FCC to have the local market changed to included Larimer and Weld counties. As prior to cable's dominance in the mid-1990s, the station served the area and has made other current moves to serve the area. Comcast finally caved and added KGWN on three systems. In June 2008, the station suspended its Northern Colorado operations only to restarted them on September 15, 2008.
As of September 2008, KGWN broadcast a separate CBS feed, identified as Northern Colorado 5 or NoCo 5 in short, on its second digital subchannel that specifically focused on Northern Colorado. Although Northern Colorado is part of the Denver market, KGWN has long claimed Northern Colorado as part of its primary coverage area, since its transmitter is close to the Colorado border. It provides city-grade coverage of Fort Collins, Loveland, and Greeley. It also provides grade B coverage as far south as Longmont and Boulder. It has long been carried on cable systems in Fort Collins, Loveland, and Greeley alongside Denver's CBS affiliate (originally KMGH-TV and now network owned-and-operated KCNC-TV). Additionally, many cable systems in Wyoming, particularly on the Wyoming side of the Denver market, carry both KGWN and KCNC.
On September 18, 2006, KGWN began carrying programming from The CW on a new second digital subchannel. This was dropped in September 2008 in favor of a standard definition simulcast of the main signal targeted towards Northern Colorado. The CW programming continued to be seen on area cable systems. On April 29, 2009, the carriage contract of KGWN and "Cheyenne CW" expired. This led to SagamoreHill Broadcasting demanding that Bresnan Cable remove the two channels, resulting in approximately 30,000 customers (reported as 80% of their viewership) losing access to local CBS and CW programming. The dispute hinged on the amount SagamoreHill wanted to charge Bresnan for the rights to carry the stations.
KGWN waged a propaganda campaign in the days leading up to the end of the contract attempting to change Bresnan Cable customers to Dish Network. KGWN refused to post any comments on its site regarding customers who did not wish to see the contract renewed despite news coverage of the dispute having elicited numerous such comments. On May 8, 2009, the stations were restored to the Bresnan system. In December 2011, CW programming was added to subchannel 5.3 and NOCO 5 programming on subchannel 5.2 was improved to 720p.
In May 2013, SagamoreHill Broadcasting reached a deal to sell KGWN and KSTF, along with KGNS-TV in Laredo, Texas, to Yellowstone Holdings, a subsidiary of Frontier Radio Management. On November 4, 2013, Gray Television announced a deal to acquire Yellowstone Holdings for $23 million. That reunited KGWN with many of its former sister stations under Benedek ownership after being separated for 11 years. KGWN-TV was operated under a local marketing agreement by Gray until the closure of the deal, on December 31. On December 19, 2013, KGWN announced that it would close "Northern Colorado 5," citing the inability to make the service "a viable long-term operation."
The stations' digital signals are multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP short name||Programming|
|Main KGWN/KSTF programming / CBS|
|Simulcast of KNEP / NBC|
KGWN's semi-satellite KSTF did not offer any subchannels until upgrades to the microwave link connecting the stations were made in the mid-2010s; additionally, as the link used analog equipment, KSTF could only broadcast in standard definition. However, KGWN's high definition feed was carried in Scottsbluff on Charter digital channel 785. As of 2015[update], KSTF broadcasts in high definition and carries the KGWN subchannels.
In October 2017, KNEP launched on KGWN's 5.2 subchannel, replacing "NBC Cheyenne."
KGWN is the only television station with a news department based in Cheyenne. Although KTWO and KCWY-DT both have studios in Casper, those outlets feature reporters who focus their coverage on Cheyenne and the surrounding area. For many years, KSTF aired its own local newscasts and separate programs covering Scottsbluff. However, its local operations were progressively cut back from the 1990s until late-2004 when SagamoreHill finally shut down KSTF's news department entirely. The Nebraska semi-satellite currently simulcasts all newscasts from KGWN but with a separate title opening.
CW affiliate KGWN-DT3 offers the nationally syndicated morning show The Daily Buzz on weekdays from 6 until 8. KGWN does not air a full two-hour weekday morning show, local news weeknights at 5 and/or 6, as well as early evening news on weekends unlike most other CBS affiliates.
In 2005, KGWN established a Northern Colorado Bureau in Fort Collins. This provided another source of local news coverage in the area besides stations based in Denver. On September 15, 2008, this operation was expanded after KGWN-DT2 launched a weeknight 35 minute newscast in partnership with the Independent News Network (INN). Known as Northern Colorado 5 News at 10, the broadcast was recorded in advance from INN's production facility on Tremont Avenue in Davenport, Iowa. The news anchor, meteorologist, and sports anchor were provided by the centralized news operation and other personnel from INN filled-in as necessary.
At some point in time, production of Northern Colorado 5 News at 10 moved to a secondary set at KGWN's studios in Cheyenne and was no longer outsourced to the Independent News Network. Although the program was still taped in advance, it now featured anchor personnel from KGWN while three reporters based locally in Fort Collins contributed Northern Colorado-specific content to the broadcast. In addition, there were weekday morning local weather cut-ins during CBS This Morning that were taped at KGWN's facility but with a focus on Northern Colorado. Weekday mornings from 6 to 6:30, KGWN-DT2 simulcast local radio station KXBG (97.9 FM). Following at 6:30, there was a local weather forecast segment which repeats several times during the half-hour. The Colorado-focused station did not simulcast any newscasts from its parent station. "Northern Colorado 5" was discontinued on December 19, 2013.
On January 24, 2019, Gray announced that the news operations of KGWN-TV and KCWY-DT would be merged under the Wyoming News Now banner by April 9, a banner similar to those used by some sister stations that were acquired from Raycom Media earlier in 2019. Under this arrangement, KGWN's 5:30 p.m. newscast will be the only Cheyenne-specific newscast (with KCWY airing a Casper-only newscast at 5 p.m.); all other newscasts, while being produced at KGWN, will be simulcast on KCWY in Casper and cover both markets. The consolidation came after the Department of Justice (DOJ) blocked Gray's acquisition of the CBS affiliation of Casper's KGWC-TV, which would have given Gray a second revenue stream in that market to cover KCWY's financial losses.
|Branding||CBS 10 News (general)|
NBC Nebraska Scottsbluff (on DT2)
Cheyenne CW (on DT3)
|Slogan||see KGWN-TV infobox|
|Channels||Digital: 29 (UHF)|
Virtual: 10 (PSIP)
(Gray Television Licensee, LLC)
|Founded||August 7, 1955|
|Call letters' meaning||ScoTtsbluFf|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog: 10 (VHF, 1955–2009)|
|Former affiliations||ABC (1955–1965, 1976–1981, joint primary with CBS 1965–1969, 1981-1984, secondary 1969–1976)|
NBC (secondary, 1955–1976, 1984–1987)
|Transmitter power||3.5 kW|
|Height||187 m (614 ft)|
|Public license information|
(semi-satellite of KGWN-TV) Profile
(semi-satellite of KGWN-TV) CDBS
KSTF signed-on August 7, 1955 as a semi-satellite of what was then KFBC-TV. In 1958, KOTA-TV in Rapid City, South Dakota put its own satellite station on-the-air in Scottsbluff, KDUH-TV (now KNEP). During the next twelve years, there was a great amount of confusion among Scottsbluff viewers especially when the two stations aired the same program simultaneously. Both had unusual "joint primary" affiliations with ABC and CBS from 1965 onwards. Although KFBC/KSTF slightly favored ABC and KOTA/KDUH slightly favored CBS, it did not help the duplication problem. However, in 1970, KDUH, along with KOTA, dropped CBS for NBC.
On December 28, 1963, KTVS in Sterling, Colorado signed-on as another semi-satellite serving Northeastern Colorado. In September 1999, Benedek sold that station to the Newsweb Corporation which made it a satellite of Denver's KTVD. In 2000, Benedek ended most local operations at KGWC-TV in Casper and its two satellites: KGWR-TV (in Rock Springs) and KGWL-TV (in Lander). The three stations became semi-satellites of KGWN. In 2003, Chelsey Broadcasting agreed to sell all three to Mark III Media (a group that included former KTWO-TV General Manager Mark Nalbone). After the FCC dismissed several objections to the sale, Mark III consummated the agreement to buy the stations on May 31, 2006.
- "Digital TV Market Listing for KGWN". RabbitEars.Info. Retrieved April 19, 2018.
- "KYCU-TV (KGWN-TV) history cards" (PDF). CDBS Public Access. Federal Communications Commission. Retrieved May 12, 2019.
- "KGWN to open Northern Colorado bureau". BizWest. August 10, 2005. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
- Hacker, Tom (October 14, 2005). "Cheyenne's Channel 5 inks cable deal". BizWest. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
- "Channel 5 scores Eagles playoff telecast". BizWest. March 30, 2006. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
- Wood, Christopher (June 9, 2006). "As regional media market grows, NoCo communities come together – BizWest". BizWest. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
- Hacker, Tom (March 16, 2007). "KGWN takes cable case to federal board". BizWest. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
- Hacker, Tom (September 29, 2008). "NoCo 5 on launch pad". BizWest. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
- Hughes, Trevor (December 19, 2013). "Fort Collins TV station NoCo5 goes off the air". The Coloradoan. Retrieved December 24, 2013.
- Nelson, Brandon (July 10, 2013). "KGWN-KSTF TV station sold to Calif. company". Scottsbluff Star-Herald. Retrieved August 29, 2013.
- Malone, Michael (May 31, 2013). "Yellowstone Buys Laredo, Cheyenne Stations For $20.5 Million". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved May 31, 2013.
- "Application For Consent To Assignment Of Broadcast Station Construction Permit Or License". CDBS Public Access. Federal Communications Commission. May 30, 2013. Retrieved June 17, 2013.
- "Gray Buying Yellowstone Stations". TVNewsCheck. Retrieved 4 November 2013.
- Consummation Notice, CDBS Public Access, Federal Communications Commission, Retrieved 2 January 2014
- Klamann, Seth (January 24, 2019). "KCWY 13 to combine with Cheyenne station, reduce Casper reporting workforce to 4". Casper Star-Tribune. Retrieved January 28, 2019.
- Jacobson, Adam (January 24, 2019). "ACA Slams Gray For DOJ Blame On Wyoming News Cut". Radio & Television Business Report. Retrieved January 28, 2019.