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Moline/Rock Island, Illinois-Davenport/Bettendorf, Iowa
Branding Quad Cities' News 8

My TV 16 (on DT3)

Slogan The Quad Cities News Leader (primary)

Live. Local. Latebreaking. (secondary)

Channels Digital: 38 (UHF)

Virtual: 8 (PSIP)

Subchannels 8.1 ABC

8.2 AccuWX 8.3 MyNetworkTV

Owner Local TV

(Local TV Illinois License, LLC)

First air date August 1, 1963
Call letters' meaning QuAD Cities
Sister station(s) WBQD-LP
Former channel number(s) 8 (VHF analog, 1963–2009)
Transmitter power 1,000 kW
Height 334 m
Facility ID 73319
Transmitter coordinates 41°18′44.5″N 90°22′46.2″W / 41.312361°N 90.3795°W / 41.312361; -90.3795

However, master control and some internal operations of that station are based in East Peoria, Illinois on Springfield Road with co-owned MyNetworkTV affiliate WAOE as well as ABC/CW affiliate WHOI and NBC affiliate WEEK-TV. Syndicated programming on WQAD includes: Dr. Phil, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and Live with Regis and Kelly.


[hide]*1 Digital programming

  • 2 History
  • 3 Programming
    • 3.1 Pre-emptions
  • 4 News operation
    • 4.1 Newscast titles
    • 4.2 Station slogans
  • 5 News team
    • 5.1 References
  • 6 External links

[edit] Digital programming

The "Quad Cities Weather Channel" is a 24-hour weather service provided by WQAD and is available to television viewers on digital channel 8.2 and on Mediacom channel 14. This was created in 2001 and featured its "Exclusive Live Triple Doppler" and weather updates every fifteen minutes. Since then, the station has added the five and fourteen day outlook with the latest weather around the region with an "L Bar".

As of May 2009, the "Quad Cities Weather Channel" is now powered by The Local AccuWeather Channel. As of August 13, 2007, its main competitor is the "KWQC 24-7 Weather Channel" which is offered by rival NBC affiliate KWQC-TV. On WQAD-DT3 is a standard definition digital signal of WBQD since that channel does not have one of its own due to its low-powered status.




RF channel

Video Aspect Name Programming
8.1 38.1 720p 16:9 WQAD-DT main WQAD programming/ABC HD
8.2 38.2 480i 4:3 WQAD-DT2 "Quad Cities Weather Channel"
8.3 38.3 480i 4:3 WQAD-DT3 WBQD-LP "My TV 16"

[edit] History

Station logo until 2009.WQAD-TV signed-on for the first time on August 1, 1963. It was owned by the Moline Television Corporation, a group of 24 local investors. They had actually won the license in 1961 but challenges delayed sign-on for two years after the refusal of another station on analog VHF channel 8, WIRL-TV (now WHOI also an ABC affiliate) in Peoria, which moved to UHF channel 19 in 1963. [1] Before WQAD signed-on, ABC programming had been split between WOC-TV (now KWQC-TV) and WHBF-TV. From day one, WQAD aired ABC programming in color. Cowles Media Company of Des Moines, Iowa purchased WQAD in 1978.

In 1985, the Cowles family sold off their various media interests with WQAD going to The New York Times Company. On May 7, 2007, Local TV (a subsidiary of Oak Hill Capital) officially took over the Times' nine television stations including WQAD. At 3:59 in the morning on June 12, 2009, [2] WQAD shut off its analog signal on channel 8 continuing digital broadcasts on its pre-transition channel number 38 using PSIP to display on digital televisions as virtual channel 8. [3] Also at the same time, the "WQAD-TV" call sign was transferred from the now-defunct analog channel 8 to digital channel 38 and the "WQAD-DT" calls were discontinued.

WQAD was branded in the early-1990s as "Active 8, Your 24 hour News Source" and did hourly news cut-ins even during the overnight hours. WQAD was the first television station in the Quad Cities to be on the air 24 hours a day in the late-1980s and early-1990s. For awhile, it was the only 24-hour station in the Quad Cities as local competitors KWQC and KLJB continued with their nightly sign-off and daily sign-on rituals either part of the time or all the time until the fall of 1997 when both channels finally followed suit and launched 24-hour schedules as well. Competitor WHBF and local PBS member station WQPT-TV still sign-off during the overnight hours even to this day. WHBF leaves its transmitter on all night and airs a test pattern with a station logo and legal ID with its signal superimposed over the test pattern while WQPT cuts the carrier to its signal shortly after sign-off airing the test pattern only very briefly after sign-off and for about ten to fifteen minutes prior to sign-on.

[edit] Programming

WQAD's early years are closely linked to the station's prominent anchor/reporter, Jim King. He was the station's main anchorman from the day the station first signed-on until 1998 and doubling as News Director for most of that time. His sign-off at the end of his newscasts was always "Thank you for inviting us into your home." King took cameras and gear to Vietnam for two tours of reporting on local troops. He was long the staple on the anchor desk and was known for his "On The Road" series of reports and for his longtime role as the emcee of the station's annual Muscular Dystrophy Association telethons from 1971 to 1998. He died of a heart attack while shoveling his sidewalk on January 2, 1999.

WQAD was one of the organizations which founded the Quad City Open Golf Tournament in 1971. The PGA tournament is now called the John Deere Classic and has been the topic of special broadcasts on the television station for more than 35 years. Quad-Cities baby boomers fondly remember WQAD's weekly midnight Chuck Acri Creature Feature showing early Creature Features films including science fiction and monster movies. WQAD's early days are also remembered for being the local outlet for Romper Room and its host Miss Peggy. For much of the time since 1988, this station has carried the syndicated program Live with Regis and Kelly weekday mornings at 9 which is produced by WABC-TV in New York City and distributed nationally by that channel's corporate sibling Disney-ABC Domestic Television formerly known as Buena Vista Television.

[edit] Pre-emptions

During the 1980s and 1990s, WQAD pre-empted some of ABC's lower-rated daytime programing. It did not air low-rated soap operas including Loving, The City, and the first few months of Port Charles. It also frequently pre-empted ABC's morning talk shows such as Mike and Maty, which had previously occupied the same time slot on ABC that is now occupied by The View, in favor of higher rated syndicated programming. Also from August 1997 until September 1999, WQAD even pre-empted the first two seasons of The View choosing instead to air The People's Court during the 10 o'clock time slot. WQAD finally added The View to its weekday morning lineup in September 1999.

Today, WQAD rarely ever pre-empts any programming from ABC or any of its local or syndicated programming. The only notable exception to this is the traditional Muscular Dystrophy Association telethon which begins the Sunday night before Labor Day at 10:35 after the 10 o'clock newscast and ends at 6 p.m. on Labor Day. In the process, all regularly scheduled programming from its Sunday late-night and overnight lineup of syndicated programming to the Labor-Day Monday editions of World News Now, America This Morning, and Good Morning America and all regularly scheduled daytime network and syndicated programming all the way up to 6 p.m. including ABC World News are pre-empted by WQAD in favor of the telethon.

However, the Labor Day editions of the soap operas on ABC are aired during the late-night and overnight hours of Monday night with All My Children airing at 12:35 followed by One Life to Live at 1:35 and General Hospital at 2:35 with the World News Now being joined in progress at 3:35. Also, local newscasts Good Morning Quad Cities, News 8 at 11, and News 8 at 5 are pre-empted on Labor Day as the station's news anchors are instead emceeing the local portions of the MDA telethon.

[edit] News operation

The station began news operations from the first day it signed on-the-air in 1963. At times, it shares news stories with sister station WHO-TV in Des Moines. WQAD also uses WHO's chopper usually during severe weather or flooding. WQAD is also an affiliate with CNN and uses footage from the network on WQAD News 8 at 6:30. On September 4, 2007, its weeknight 6 o'clock newscast started re-airing on WBQD at 9. Its hour long midday newscast, News 8 at 11, debuted on September 22, 2008 and anchored by the morning news team. The station had dropped its midday newscast called Newsday in 1996. WQAD is not the only station to have a midday broadcast as KWQC has an hour newscast at noon. On August 6, 2010, it was announced that this station will enter into a news share agreement with Fox affiliate KLJB. This will result in a nightly prime time broadcast at 9 for a half-hour on that channel starting September 6. [4]

[edit] Newscast titles

  • News Scope 8 (1966-1975)
  • Eyewitness News (1975-1978)
  • Active 8 (1978-1994)
  • (WQAD, Quad Cities') NewsChannel 8 (1994-2009)
  • (WQAD, Quad Cities') News 8 (2009-present)

[edit] Station slogans

  • "The Most Complete Coverage of the Two-State Area" (1984-1985)
  • "The Best News of All" (1985-1992)
  • "Your 24-Hour News Source" (1992-1997)
  • "Live. Local. Latebreaking." (1997-2008, primary; 2009-present, secondary)
  • "The Quad Cities' News Leader" (2009-present)

[edit] News team


  • Julie Sisk - weekday mornings and 11 a.m.
    • health reporter
  • Jim Mertens - weekday mornings and 11 a.m.
    • "The Quad Cities According to Jim" segment producer and heard on KUUL-FM 101.3
  • Jason Fechner - weeknights at 5, 6, and 10
  • Rae Chelle Davis - weeknights at 5, 6, and 10
  • Matt Hammill - weeknights at 6:30 and Senior Reporter
  • (Kim Johnson - weeknights at 9)
  • (TBD - weeknights at 9)
  • Rebecca Smith - weekends and reporter

Storm Team 8 Meteorologists

  • James Zahara (Certified Broadcast Meteorologist) - Chief seen weeknights at 5, 6:30, (and 9)
  • Terry Swails (AMS Seal of Approval) - weeknights at 6 and 10
  • Anthony Peoples (NWA Seal of Approval) - weekday mornings and Monday through Tuesday at 11 a.m.
  • Cassie Heiter - Wednesday though Friday at 11 a.m. and weekends


  • Amy Calderone - Sunday through Thursday nights
  • Matt Randazzo - Friday and Saturday nights

News 8 Reporters

  • Thom White - entertainment and producer weeknights at 6:30
  • Brian Boesen - Wednesday through Sunday nights
  • Chris Williams - investigative and consumer
  • Kristy Merganthal - weekday mornings
  • Nicole Murphy - producer
  • Chris Minor
  • John David

[edit] References

  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^

[edit] External links

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