WLAX

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WLAX

WLAX-WEUX Logo.png


Wlax dt2 2011.png
La Crosse, Wisconsin
United States
Branding Fox 25/48
Channels Digital: 17 (UHF)
(to move to 33 (UHF))
Virtual: 25 (PSIP)
Subchannels (see article)
Affiliations Fox
Owner Nexstar Media Group
(Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc.)
First air date November 10, 1986 (31 years ago) (1986-11-10)
Call letters' meaning LA Crosse
("X" refers to "Crosse")
and FoX (as backronym)
Sister station(s) WFRV-TV, WJMN-TV
Former channel number(s) 25 (UHF analog, 1986–2009)
Transmitter power 852 kW
1000 kW (CP)
Height 297.3 m (975 ft)
295 m (968 ft) (CP)
Class DT
Facility ID 2710
Transmitter coordinates 43°48′16″N 91°22′19.8″W / 43.80444°N 91.372167°W / 43.80444; -91.372167
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile
CDBS
Website www.wiproud.com
WEUX
(satellite of WLAX)
Chippewa Falls/
Eau Claire, Wisconsin
United States
City Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin
Branding see WLAX infobox
Channels Digital: 49 (UHF)
(to move to 21 (UHF))
Virtual: 48 (PSIP)
Subchannels (see article)
Affiliations Fox
Owner Nexstar Media Group
(Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc.)
First air date February 8, 1993 (25 years ago) (1993-02-08)
Call letters' meaning EaU Claire FoX
Sister station(s) see WLAX infobox
Former channel number(s) 48 (UHF analog, 1993–2009)
Transmitter power 1000 kW
Height 223.1 m (732 ft)
225.5 m (740 ft) (application)
Class DT
Facility ID 2709
Transmitter coordinates 44°57′24″N 91°40′4″W / 44.95667°N 91.66778°W / 44.95667; -91.66778 (WEUX)
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information:
(
satellite of WLAX) Profile

(
satellite of WLAX) CDBS
Website www.wiproud.com

WLAX is a Fox-affiliated television station licensed to La Crosse, Wisconsin, United States and serving Western Wisconsin. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 17 (or virtual channel 25 via PSIP) from a transmitter in La Crescent, Minnesota near the studios of ABC affiliate WXOW (channel 19). Owned by Nexstar Media Group, the station has studios at Interchange Place in La Crosse at the intersection of I-90/US 53/WIS 35 and Rose Street (hence the postal address name).

The station operates a full-time satellite, WEUX, licensed to Chippewa Falls and serving Eau Claire and the Chippewa Valley. This outlet broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 49 (or virtual channel 48 via PSIP) from a transmitter, southeast of Colfax, along the DunnChippewa county line. It maintains an advertising sales office on WIS 93 in Eau Claire along the U.S. 53 and Business U.S. 53/Hastings Way interchange.

History[edit]

The WLAX/WEUX main studios.

WLAX signed on the air on November 10, 1986 with an analog signal on UHF channel 25. After a few months as Western Wisconsin's first general-entertainment independent station, it joined Fox. The station was originally owned by Family Group Broadcasting. However, since the outlet's transmitter was located in Minnesota, it provided an inadequate over-the-air signal to the northern part of the market (the same problem that long plagued ABC affiliate WXOW). As a result, viewers in Eau Claire could only watch the station on cable television. Family Group sold both WLAX and WGBA-TV in Green Bay to Aries Telecommunications in 1991.

In order to close this coverage gap, full-time satellite WEUX was launched on February 8, 1993 with an analog signal on UHF channel 48. The two stations then adopted the "Fox 25/48" branding. Grant Broadcasting acquired WLAX/WEUX from Aries in 1996.[1] On April 29, 2004, WLAX became available on DISH Network's locals-Into-Locals package. DirecTV would follow suit and do the same on May 24, 2005.[2]

On December 9, 2004, WLAX-DT signed-on with a standard definition digital signal on UHF channel 17.[3] WEUX-DT followed on February 1, 2006 with a digital signal on UHF channel 49 also in standard definition.[4] WLAX-DT added high definition capabilities on January 28, 2008 while also launching a new second digital subchannel to offer the same programming in standard definition.[5] As part of the DTV transition on February 17, 2009, both outlets signed-off their analog signals. WEUX would not upgrade its digital signal to high definition until September 10, 2009, and just as WLAX did, added a second subchannel to allow continued standard definition service reception.[6]

On March 25, 2011, WLAX-DT2 started a standard definition simulcast of NBC affiliate WEAU (channel 13). The big three outlet was added to WLAX's second digital subchannel after WEAU's broadcast tower in Fairchild collapsed during a winter storm on March 22, 2011.[7] Although WEAU was able to resume its own over-the-air transmissions on July 22, 2011, the simulcasting on WLAX-DT2 and WQOW-DT3 would continue until the NBC station finished building a new tower and signed-on its new UHF transmitter which occurred on January 5, 2012. On January 12 at approximately 1:30 p.m., WEAU pulled its programming from WQOW-DT 18.3 and WLAX-DT 25.2. At that time, WLAX and WEUX launched MeTV on both of their second digital subchannels.[8] On November 6, 2013, Nexstar Broadcasting Group announced that it would purchase the Grant stations, including WLAX/WEUX, for $87.5 million.[9] The deal will make WLAX and WEUX sister stations with Green Bay's CBS affiliate, WFRV-TV. The sale was completed on December 1, 2014.[10][11]

In June 2016, Nexstar agreed to carry the networks of Katz Broadcasting as subchannels on its stations,[12] an agreement that went into effect on September 1 on WLAX/WEUX. Because of the unique circumstances of the two-station simulcast, the four Katz networks were spread across both stations, with Laff TV on WLAX-DT3 and Grit TV on WLAX-DT4, and Escape on WEUX-DT3 and Bounce TV on WEUX-DT4.[13]

Digital television[edit]

WLAX digital channels[edit]

Channel Video Aspect PSIP short name Programming[14]
25.1 720p 16:9 WLAX-HD Main WLAX programming / Fox
25.2 480i 4:3 WLAX-Me MeTV
25.3 Laff Laff
25.4 Grit Grit

WEUX digital channels[edit]

Channel Video Aspect PSIP short name Programming[15]
48.1 720p 16:9 WEUX-HD Main WEUX programming / Fox
48.2 480i 4:3 WEUX-Me MeTV
48.3 Escape Escape
48.4 Bounce Bounce TV

Programming[edit]

Syndicated programming on WLAX/WEUX includes The Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men, Modern Family, and Judge Judy among others.

Newscasts[edit]

On August 28, 2006, WLAX/WEUX entered into a news share agreement with WEAU (owned by Gray Television). This arrangement resulted in a weeknight prime time newscast, produced by the big three outlet, to debut on this station. Known as Fox 25/48 News at 9, the thirty-minute broadcast would eventually expand to weekends starting January 20, 2007.

This station uses a majority of WEAU's on-air team except for maintaining a separate weeknight meteorologist and weekend news anchor (although they can fill-in on the NBC outlet when needed). Fox 25/48 News at 9 originates from a secondary set at WEAU's facility on South Hastings Way/US 53 Business in Altoona (with an Eau Claire postal address) and is fed to the WLAX/WEUX studios through a fiber-optic link.

During weather forecast segments, WLAX/WEUX features WEAU's Doppler weather radar that is based at the big three affiliate's studio. On August 5, 2011, WEAU upgraded its newscasts to high definition level. However, Fox 25/48 News at 9 was not included in the change because the show is produced from a secondary set that at the time lacked HD cameras. As of fall 2015, Fox 25/48 News is broadcast in HD.

References[edit]

External links[edit]