call_letters = CKCO-TV
station_branding = CTV
analog = 13 (VHF)
digital = "allocated 7 (VHF)"
other_chs = see below
affiliations = CTV
March 1, 1954
callsign_meaning = C
owner = CTVglobemedia, Inc.
licensee = CTV Television, Inc.
former_affiliations = CBC (1954-1964)
effective_radiated_power = 325 kW
HAAT = 291.9 m
coordinates = coord|43|24|17|N|80|38|5|W|type:landmark
homepage = [http://southwesternontario.ctv.ca/ CTV Southwestern Ontario]
CKCO-TV is a
television stationbroadcasting on channel 13 in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada. It is an owned and operated stationof the CTV Television Network, and has been branded CTV Southwestern Ontario since 2005.
Broadcasts began on
March 1, 1954from a transmitter on Baden Hill, near Baden, just west of Kitchener. The transmitter has become one of the most identifiable landmarks for those who live in the area. Originally, like all private television stations in Canada from 1953 to 1959, CKCO was an affiliate of the CBC. It changed its affiliation to CTV in 1964. It still broadcasts, on channel 13, from the Baden tower, although it increased signal power in the early 1960s to reach London (from which Kitchener then received CBC affiliate programs on CFPL-TV).
The station's founder was
Carl Arthur Pollock. At one time CKCO was owned by CAP Communications (named after Pollock's initials).
October 3 2005, CKCO no longer identifies by its call letters, and its newscasts are branded as "CTV News".
(CKCO was formerly a callsign of a radio station out of
Ottawa, Ontariofrom the 1920s to the 1940s and is known today as CIWW (AM)).
Viewing area and transmitters
In addition to the Baden tower, CKCO has two additional rebroadcast transmitters to extend its viewing area to cover most of
Southwestern Ontario, with some exceptions such as Essex County and Windsor (which does not have a CTV station of its own, being served only by the former CTV-turned- A-Channelstation CHWI), where it is available on Cogecoon Cable Channel 13.
CKCO's Sarnia rebroadcaster CKCO-TV-3, on Channel 42 and actually located at Oil Springs, was established in 1975. It can be seen over the air and on cable in extreme eastern and southeastern
Michiganin such towns as Port Huronto St. Clair Shores, and is on the channel lineup in Detroit-area TV Guide listings. Its target audience is Sarnia, Chatham and most of Lambton and Kent counties.
The station also has a news bureau in Chatham,
CTV also broadcasts to the
Georgian Bayregion on channel 2 from the CKCO-TV-2 transmitter, which has operated since 1971 in the town of Wiarton, Ontario. Its terrestrial footprint reaches as far east as Toronto, where it is carried on digital cable(until recently, it was available on analog basic cable, but high up on the UHF dial).
Prior to 1999, the station also broadcast on channel 11 to the Muskoka and Parry Sound districts of Ontario from the CKCO-TV-4 transmitter near Huntsville. That year, that transmitter was changed to a rebroadcaster of CKNY in North Bay. (It has since become a rebroadcaster of Sudbury's CICI.)
The station also had a news office in Windsor, at the corner of Park Street and Victoria Avenue, at the ground floor of the
Victoria Park Placeapartments, but closed up in 1994, shortly after the launch of Independent station/Semi-BBS affiliate, CHWI. The spot was abandoned for several years, still showing the faded "CKCO TV 42" banners atop its storefront for a few years. It is now a convenience store.
CKCO was originally owned by Central Ontario Television, a consortium that included the Famous Players theatre chain (today owned by
Cineplex Entertainment) and businessman Carl Arthur Pollockpresident of the family owned television manufacturer Electrohome. Electrohomeacquired control of CKCO in 1970 when Canadian broadcasting laws required domestic ownership of stations, ending the involvement of American-owned Famous Players, which at the time was owned by Paramount Pictures.
In the 1990s,
Baton Broadcastinghad owned competing local stations in southwestern Ontario ( CFPL-TVLondon, CHWI-TVWindsor, CKNX-TVWingham). A deal between Electrohomeand Baton in 1996 resulted each company owning half of these stations, plus CKCO-TV, among other Canadian stations.
The following year, another deal gave Baton control over CKCO-TV, while
CHUM Limitedtook control over the other southwestern Ontario stations (today operating under the A-Channelbrand). CTVglobemedia reacquired CFPL, CHWI and CKNX in 2007 as a result of a takeover of CHUM Limited.
Baton became CTV, replacing the decades of co-operative ownership of the network. In 2000, BCE purchased CTV. The network is now owned by
At present the flagship newscast is called "CTV News", replacing "CKCO News". Prior to 1998, when Baton Broadcasting rebranded all the CTV stations identically, CKCO's newscast was called "CKCO Action News". In the past, newscasts titles on CKCO included "Scan NewsHour" and "Ontario Report".
The station continues to produce a limited amount of local programming in addition to its local newscasts. On Saturday evenings at 6:30 p.m., they broadcast a program called "What's Your Point?", which features a four-member panel debating current issues, and is hosted by Brent Hanson. CKCO also broadcasts a current affairs program called "ProvinceWide," hosted by Daiene Vernile, on Sundays at 6:30 p.m.
Before CKCO was a CTV owned-and-operated station, the station produced considerably more local non-news programming:
* "Canadian Bandstand" (1958-?)
* "Bowling for Dollars" (1970s?–1992)
* "Camp Cariboo" (1985–1990)
* "Romper Room", a children's program, was broadcast nationally on CTV from the mid-1960s to 1992
* "Polka Time" (originally "Gemütlichkeit"), hosted by
Grammy Awardwinning polka musician Walter Ostanek
* "Sunday AM"
* "Provincewide" (1985 - present)
* "Tree House" (children's program)
* several programs hosted by Big Al, including the noon-time "Big Al's Cartoon Capers", "Big Al's Talent Showcase", and "Big Al's Ranch Party" in the late afternoon
CKCO was known for many years for the red jackets worn by news anchors on their newscasts, a practice that began in 1967 with the emergence of colour television and continued until 1989.
News veterans who had their start at the station include
Jeff Hutcheson, Lisa LaFlammeand Ron Johnston. Bill Inkolwas a long-time sportscaster for not only the station, but often for CTV's national sports broadcasts. He was also a host of "Bowling for Dollars".
"Big Al" ('Al' Elwood Jones) was the long-time host of after-school "Big Al's Ranch Party", "Big Al's Talent Showcase", "Big Al's Cartoon Capers", "Big Al and the Flintstones", as well as other children's programs at the station.
Oopsy the Clown, a children's performer portrayed by
Bob McNea(1929-2005), moved to CKCO after appearing for several years on Detroit, MichiganNBC affiliate WWJ-TV (now WDIV-TV). Gary McLarenworked in the news department for 39 years (1957-1996), spending most of that time in an on-air role, and also hosted "Canadian Bandstand" in the 1960s. Daiene Vernilehas anchored/produced the weekly program "Provincewide" since its launch in 1985, making it the longest, continuous-running locally produced news magazine show in Canada.
Other personalities in the station's history included local daytime show hosts such as
Elaine Cole, Betty Thompsonand Johnnie Walters. Thompson was also a long-time host of "Romper Room". Bob Bratinahosted Polka Time with Walter Ostanek and replaced "Big Al" as host of Talent Showcase prior to Oopsy the Clown.
Present-day 6:00 o'clock newscasters
Kyle Christieand Nancy Richards, weatherman Dave MacDonald and sportscaster Randy Steinmanhave a combined 80+ years experience working for CKCO.
* 1960s - The Big, Bright Thirteen
* 1970s - Turn to Us, We're Thirteen
* 1988 - The Best Place to Be!
* Early 90s - Great Things are Happening
* Early 90s - Everyday
* 1996 - Here for You
* 2004 - Your Community First
From the 1960s (at latest) through the early 1980s' CKCO's logo included a
Conestoga wagondrawn by a four horse hitch. Designed by staff artist [http://www.handstowork.elora.on.ca/FrameRunnells/runnells.html Percy Runnels] , the horses showed thirteen legs for CKCO's channel number. From the early-1970s, the logo also incorporated the logo for CKCO's then-parent company, appliance manufacturer Electrohome.
* [http://southwesternontario.ctv.ca/ CTV Southwestern Ontario]
* [http://www.broadcasting-history.ca/listings_and_histories/television/histories.php?id=12&historyID=31 Canadian Communications Foundation - CKCO-TV History]
* [http://www.exchangemagazine.com/ExchangeVol21No7/pdfs/Jul_Aug04Exchpgs10-18.pdf Exchange Magazine article on CKCO's 50th anniversary] (Jul/Aug 2004)
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