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KMBC-TV, virtual channel 9, is a television station located in Kansas City, Missourimarker. KMBC-TV is owned by Hearst Television, and is affiliated with the ABC Television Network. Its studios and transmitter are located in Kansas City, Missouri.

The station's high guyed mast broadcast tower built in 1988 is at 5701 E 22nd Street in eastern Kansas City on a hill above the Blue River.


Cook Paint ownership

The Federal Communications Commission awarded the license of Kansas City's third and last VHF station to two locally-based radio station operators who competed heavily for the license. The Cook Paint and Varnish Company, which operated WHB radiomarker (then at 710 AM, now at 810 AM) and the Midland Broadcasting Company, owners of KMBC radio (980 AM, now KMBZmarker), began shared operation of channel 9 on August 2, 1953. Under the arrangement, the two separate stations would each alternate 90 minutes of airtime, broadcasting from separate studios but using the same channel and transmitter. The combined KMBC-TV and WHB-TV operation also carried programming from CBS.

Cook Paint and Varnish purchased Midland Broadcasting's holdings in April 1954 including Midland's television studios under the stage at the Lyric Theatre, at 10th and Central in Downtown Kansas City.

The move ended the split-station arrangement. On June 14, 1954, KMBC-TV took over channel 9 full-time, absorbing WHB-TV's share of the frequency. Cook Paint also sold WHB radio to comply with FCC rules. In September 1955, KMBC-TV swapped affiliations with KCMO-TV (channel 5, now KCTVmarker), becoming an ABC affiliate. During the late 1950s, the station was also briefly affiliated with the NTA Film Network.

KMBC-TV had formerly operated a satellite station in Sedalia, Missourimarker (part of the Columbiamarker-Jefferson Citymarker market), when Cook Paint and Varnish bought KDRO-TV (now KMOS-TVmarker) on January 28, 1959. KDRO-TV became an ABC affiliate in 1958, but ABC refused to give it a network feed to protect KMBC-TV, instead switching to and from KMBC's signal when ABC network programming was being broadcast.

Metromedia ownership

Cook Paint and Varnish then sold the KMBC stations and KMOS to Metropolitan Broadcasting (later Metromedia) in 1961. Metropolitan did not want KMOS-TV, so it was subsequently spun-off to the Jefferson City News Tribune, then-owner of Jefferson City CBS affiliate KRCGmarker and became a repeater of that station. Metromedia sold KMBC radio to Bonneville International in 1967, but kept KMBC-TV.

Over the years, KMBC-TV has pre-empted some ABC programming. Notably under Metromedia ownership, channel 9 passed on The Brady Bunch when it debuted in 1969, but it was picked up a year later. Also, it was one of the few ABC affiliates to pre-empt the ABC Evening News during the late 1960s and early 1970s. Both of these programs were instead broadcast on now-defunct independent KCIT-TV (channel 50, now KPXE-TVmarker).

In 1974 Metromedia changed the lease terms of the Lyric Theatre and was given total control of it.

In 1983, KMBC-TV anchor/reporter Christine Craft won a judgment against the station and Metromedia. Craft accused station managers of sexual harassment; this was one of the first such cases to be widely publicized in the United States. Craft, however, lost her case on appeal. Although KMBC had moved up to #1 in the market during the incident in 1981, a focus group said she was "too old, too unattractive and not deferential to men." At the time she was 36 and her co-anchor Scott Feldman was 31.

Hearst ownership

In the wake of the Craft case Metromedia sold the station to the Hearst Corporation in 1982. Under Hearst, the station expanded its local news production. Hearst also bought the Lyric Theatre. Hearst which began looking for new quarters sold the building in 1990 but the station continued to operate there.

KMBC came under common management as upstart WB affiliate KCWB (channel 29, now CW affiliate KCWEmarker) in 1996 under a local marketing agreement. In March 2008, KMBC began a morning newscast for KCWEmarker, the first regularly scheduled news program for the station.

On August 23rd, 2007, it moved from the Lyric to its new studios at 6455 Winchester Avenue near Swope Parkmarker.

Digital television

KMBC-DT broadcasts on digital channel 29.Digital channels
Channel Name Programming
9.1 KMBC-DT main KMBC/ABC HD programming
9.2 First Alert Weather 24/7 24-hour weather information from the
The Local AccuWeather Channel

Analog-to-digital conversion

KMBC's broadcasts of ABC programming became digital-only, effective June 12, 2009 As the Kansas City "nightlight" station, it aired a loop reminding viewers to get a digital converter box on analog channel 9 until July 12, 2009. On February 19, 2009, the station, after receiving permission from the FCC for a Special Temporary Authority permit, moved their digital signal from digital channel 7 to channel 29, which had been vacated by sister station KCWE two months before. The station had received viewer complaints about reception due to a combination of Kansas City being an all-UHF digital market besides Channel 9, and to address signal conflicts with Pittsburg, Kansasmarker-based KOAM-TVmarker, which was allowed to reutilize their analog channel 7 for their digital channel and transitioned on February 17, and would have received interference from KMBC-DT as the stations' transmitters are away from each other, much less than the advised separation between a shared channel . However, digital television receivers will continue to display KMBC's virtual digital channel as 9.


KMBC-TV clears all of the ABC schedule, except for ABC Kids airings of Power Rangers: Operation Overdrive likely due to lack of E/I content, which is the same reason its ABC-affiliated sister stations such as KOCO-TVmarker in Oklahoma Citymarker and WISN-TVmarker in Milwaukeemarker preempt the program. KMBC also airs The View, and Nightline and Jimmy Kimmel Live! outside of ABC's recommended timeslots for all three shows.

Current syndicated programming includes Rachael Ray, The Bonnie Hunt Show, Dr. Phil, The Oprah Winfrey Show, Entertainment Tonight, Two and a Half Men, Frasier, Sex and the City, with weekend telecasts of Boston Legal, Da Vinci's Inquest and At the Movies.

News Operation

KMBC-TV broadcasts a total of 25 hours of local news per week (with 3½ hours on weekdays, four hours on Saturdays and 2½ hours on Sundays).

From 1957 until 2007, the station had been based out of (what is now) the Lyric Opera building in downtown Kansas City. KMBC-TV unveiled its new, purpose-built facility near Swope Parkmarker in Kansas City on August 23, 2007, beginning with KMBC 9 News at 5:00. The new building includes a news set designed by FX Group. With the relocation, channel 9 also became the first station in Kansas City to produce and broadcast its local programming in high definition. [178432]


During the late 1970s and into the 1980s KMBC was the number one television station in the Kansas City market, but the station ended the latter decade in second place behind WDAF-TVmarker (channel 4). As soon as WDAF switched from NBC to Fox in 1994, KMBC returned to number one in the market. Currently, KMBC generally battles KCTV for first place at 10:00 p.m., while continuing to battle WDAF for first in morning timeslots. In November 2007, KMBC finished the sweeps period first in most newscasts, and tying KCTV at 10 p.m. [178433] In February 2008, KMBC's newscasts won all of their time periods outright.


KMBC-TV's news department won seven 2007 Edward R. Murrow Awards from the Radio-Television News Directors Association, which is the most Murrow awards won by a television station in the country. The station won awards in the following categories:

* News Series
* Feature
* News Documentary
* Spot News
* Continuing Coverage
* Newscast
* Overall Excellence

24 Hour Weather Channel

KMBC has recently launched a new digital weather channel that gives up-to-the-minute weather information 24 hours a day on their digital subchannel 2 (DT9.2).

KMBC 9 Notable Personalities

Current On-Air Talent

(as of June 21, 2009)

Current Anchors
  • Jana Corrie - weekend mornings "FirstNews" (also reporter)
  • Kelly Eckerman - Saturdays at 6, and weekends at 5 and 10PM (also health reporter)
  • Jim Flink - Saturdays at 6, and weekends at 5 and 10PM (also reporter)
  • Kris Ketz - weekday mornings "FirstNews" (5-7AM)
  • Dion Lim - weekday mornings "FirstNews" (7-9AM; on KCWE) (also reporter)
  • Larry Moore - weeknights at 5, 6 and 10PM
  • Lara Moritz - weeknights at 5, 6 and 10PM
  • Donna Pitman - weekday mornings "FirstNews" (5-7AM)
  • Dan Weinbaum - weekend mornings "FirstNews"

  • Maria Antonia - general assignment reporter
  • Martin Augustine - general assignment reporter
  • Peggy Breit - general assignment reporter
  • Bev Chapman - general assignment reporter
  • Micheal Mahoney - general assignment reporter
  • Marcus Moore - general assignment reporter
  • Justin Robinson - general assignment reporter
  • Johnny Rowlands - traffic reporter and NewsChopper 9 pilot
  • Brenda Washington - general assignment reporter

Hearst Television Washington Bureau
  • Sally Kidd - Washington D.C. bureau reporter
  • Laurie Kinney - Washington D.C. bureau reporter

KMBC 9 First Alert Weather Team
  • Bryan Busby (AMS Seal of Approval) - Chief Meteorologist; weeknights at 5, 6 and 10PM
  • Erin Little (AMS Seal of Approval) - Meteorologist; Saturdays at 6, and weekends at 5 and 10PM
  • Joel Nichols - Meteorologist; weekday mornings "FirstNews"
  • Lisa Teachman (NWA Member; AMS Seal of Approval) - Meteorologist; weekend mornings "FirstNews"

Sports Team
  • Len Dawson - Sports Director Emeritus (Len scaled back his role in April 2009 to part-time during Chiefs' season)
  • Nick Griffith - Sports Anchor; weeknights at 6 and 10PM
  • Karen Kornacki - Sports Anchor; Saturdays at 6, and weekends at 5 and 10PM (also sports reporter)

Notable and former alumni

News/Station Presentation

Newscast Titles

  • Your Esso Reporter (1953–1956)
  • The Kansas City Report (1956–1960)
  • The Television 9 Report (1960–1965)
  • Pulse (5 p.m. newscast) / 24 Hours (10 p.m. newscast; 1965–c. 1971)
  • Total News (c.1971–1979) [178434]
  • The News: The xx:00 Report/Update (1979–1983) [178435]
  • KMBC 9 News (1983–present) [178436]

Station Slogans

  • Only on Channel 9 (early 1970s)
  • Kansas City Turns Us On (mid-late 1970s)
  • The Spirit of Kansas City (c. 1982-1983)
  • So Good To Turn To (1983-c. 1985; used during period station used news package of the same name by Frank Gari)
  • Where the News Comes First (1986-2000)
  • Coverage You Can Count On (2000-2007)
  • Local. Live. Coverage You Can Count On (2007-present; variant of previous slogan)


External links

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