KTKA-TV, channel 49, is the ABC affiliate in Topeka, Kansas. The station is owned by the World Company, publisher of the Lawrence Journal-World, and broadcasts its digital signal on UHF channel 49. On June 2, 2009 KTKA added CW Network programming on 49.3. Its studios are located on Chelsea Drive in southwest Topeka, while its transmitter is located west of the city.
|Branding||49 ABC (general)
49 News (newscasts)
|Channels||Digital: 49 (UHF)|
|Subchannels||49.1 ABC HD
49.2 Weather 49.3 The CW
|Owner||The World Company
(sale to PBC Broadcasting, LLC, pending FCC approval) (Free State Communications, LLC)
|First air date||June 1983|
|Call letters' meaning||TopeKA|
|Former callsigns||KLDH (1983-1987)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog: 49 (UHF, 1983-2009)
Digital: 48 (UHF, 1998-2010)
|Transmitter power||55 kW|
|Transmitter coordinates||39°1′33.7″N 95°55′2.1″W|
|Website||www.ktka.com (official site)
49abc.com (program listings)
On Topeka-area Cox systems, KTKA is available on channel 9 and HD 2009, and 49.2, a local weather service, is on digital channel 675.
KTKA originally signed on the air as KLDH in June 1983, immediately taking the ABC affiliation. Previously, ABC had been relegated to off-hours clearances on CBS affiliate WIBW-TV and NBCaffiliate KTSB (now KSNT). Channel 49's sign-on made Topeka one of the last markets in the country with full service from all three networks. Most of the area, however, could get the full ABC schedule from KMBC-TV in Kansas City or KQTV in St. Joseph , and KMBC had been available on cable in Topeka for decades.
KLDH was plagued by technical problems during its first two years on-air, including a transmitter fire that knocked it off the air for a few weeks. It changed its calls to the current KTKA-TV in 1987.
In 1998, KTKA moved its studios from downtown Topeka to southwest Topeka; the current studio facilities are also used by KTPK.
On August 29, 2005, KTKA was purchased by the World Company.
On February 4, 2011, KTKA announced that Free State Communications will sell the station to PBC Broadcasting. PBC Broadcasting also owns stations in Youngstown, OH & Savannah, GA. Both operations are part of shared serviceand local marketing agreements with stations owned by New Vision Television in their markets, suggesting that KTKA would be structured under the same sort of arrangement with New Vision-owned KSNT.
KTKA's broadcasts are digital-only, effective 12:01am February 17, 2009. Originally, the station aired its digital signal on channel 48 and remained there after the analog shutdown. However, through the use of PSIP, its signal redirected to channel 49. In mid-2010, the station moved its digital broadcasts back to channel 49.
KTKA began airing newscasts after it signed on, but never gained much traction against WIBW-TV and KSNT. It phased out news programming in 2002. After the World Company acquired the station, KTKA received new software and hardware for the re-development of a news division. On February 5, 2006, KTKA launched 49 News at 10 immediately following Super Bowl XL.
Currently, the station only airs a 6 p.m. newscast on weekdays, as well as a 10 p.m. newscast seven nights a week. At one time, KTKA offered newscasts in the morning (branded Good Morning Kansas) and at 11 a.m., but they were canceled on November 6, 2008 as part of cutbacks that resulted in nine employees being let go.
- Newsline 49 (1983-1989)
- 49 Eyewitness News (1989-1995)
- News Source 49 (1995-2002)
- 49 News (2006-present)
- Kansas' Most Powerful Television Station (1989-early 1990s)
Current on-air staff
(as of May 2010) Current Anchors
- Ben Bauman - weeknights at 6 and 10 p.m.
- Lindsey Elliott - weekends at 10 p.m.; also Manhattan bureau reporter
- Marshanna Hester - weeknights at 6 and 10 p.m.; also money reporter
49 Storm Team
- Matt Miller - Chief Meteorologist; weeknights at 6 and 10 p.m.
- Ed Bloodsworth (AMS Member; NWA Member) - Meteorologist; weekends at 10 p.m.
- Ashley Meenen - Meteorologist; weekday morning cut-ins during Good Morning America
- Gregory Postel - Meteorologist; fill-in
- Nic Hoch - Sports Director; weeknights at 6 and 10 p.m.
- Matt Lothrop - Sports Anchor; weekends at 10 p.m.; also sports reporter
- Lauren Seabrook - Emporia and education reporter
- Syed Shabbir - crime and safety reporter
- Daniel Winn - government reporter
Former on-air staff
- Official site
- Query the FCC's TV station database for KTKA
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on KTKA-TV
- ^ The Broadcasting and Cable Yearbook says June 19, while the Television and Cable Factbook says June 20.
- ^ http://cjonline.com/stories/021409/loc_387794849.shtml