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Mayville/Milwaukee/Madison, Wisconsin
United States
City Mayville, Wisconsin
Branding Trinity Broadcasting Network
Channels Digital: 43 (UHF)
Virtual: 52 (PSIP)
Subchannels 52.1 - TBN
52.2 - Hillsong Channel
52.3 - JUCE TV/Smile
52.4 - Enlace
52.5 - TBN Salsa
Affiliations TBN
Owner Trinity Broadcasting Network
(Trinity Christian Center of Santa Ana, Inc.)
First air date 1997; 20 years ago (1997)[when?]
Call letters' meaning Wayne R. Stenz
(part of original ownership group)
Former channel number(s) Analog:
52 (UHF, 1997–2009)
Transmitter power 600 kW
Height 186 m
Facility ID 68547
Transmitter coordinates 43°26′11″N 88°31′34″W / 43.43639°N 88.52611°W / 43.43639; -88.52611Coordinates: 43°26′11″N 88°31′34″W / 43.43639°N 88.52611°W / 43.43639; -88.52611
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile
Website TBN.org
WWRS's public file on TBN.org

WWRS-TV, virtual channel 52 (UHF digital channel 43), is a TBN owned-and-operated television station serving Milwaukee and Madison, Wisconsin, United States that is licensed to Mayville. The station is owned by the Trinity Broadcasting Network. WWRS maintains studio facilities and offices located on North Barker Road in Brookfield, and its transmitter is located in Hubbard. The station's signal covers much of southeastern and south-central Wisconsin, along with extended cable coverage throughout the area.


The station was formerly owned by National Minority Television, a division of TBN that was used by the network to circumvent the Federal Communications Commission's television station ownership restrictions. While TBN founder Paul Crouch was NMTV's president, one of its directors was African American and the other was Latino, which met the FCC's definition of a "minority-controlled" firm.[1] In mid-2008, the station and its NMTV sisters came directly under the TBN banner.

Like most TBN stations, WWRS simulcasts the TBN national feed for most of the day. TBN typically buys full-power stations mainly to get must-carry status on area cable systems, even though it offers almost no locally produced programming. However, WWRS airs FCC-required public affairs programming (Public Report) from its Brookfield studios,[2][3] with a nominal presence retained in at the station's transmitting facility and former main studio in Iron Ridge. The station also airs church services from throughout the area, usually on Friday morning.

Charter Communications, the dominant cable provider in the Madison area, and several communities in the Milwaukee area, added TBN and all of its digital subchannels to its systems in the area beginning late August 2007, within the provider's digital family tier of channels.[4] However, beyond must-carry situations where WWRS-DT1 must be carried on analog cable in appropriate markets, the signal comes directly via satellite to Charter's headend, not through WWRS.

Digital television[edit]

This station's digital signal, like most other full-service TBN owned-and-operated stations, carries five different TBN-run networks.

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming
52.1 480i 4:3 TBN Main TBN programming
52.2 TCC Hillsong Channel
52.3 COMBO JUCE TV/Smile
52.4 Enlace Enlace
52.5 SALSA TBN Salsa

TBN-owned full-power stations permanently ceased analog transmissions on April 16, 2009.[5]

WWRS-TV shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 52, on that date. The station's digital signal continued to broadcasts on its pre-transition UHF channel 43.[6] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 52, which was among the high band UHF channels (52-69) that were removed from broadcasting use as a result of the transition.


On April 1, 2002, a dispute arose between Time Warner Cable's Milwaukee-area system and WWRS regarding must-carry regulations. Must-carry regulations require cable television providers within the Grade B contour of a full-power, full service television station to carry that station on their basic tier. When the dispute was settled, the FCC judged that the station was not required to be carried on the cable systems in the more distant counties of Kenosha, Racine and Walworth. However, WWRS was able to exercise must-carry to the Time Warner Cable lineup in southeastern Wisconsin. This, combined with the lack of available channel space, caused the forced move of Madison's PBS member and Wisconsin Public Television flagship station WHA-TV (channel 21) to the digital cable tier in order to air WWRS on the basic cable tier.[7]


External links[edit]