KSTP-TV, virtual channel 5 (UHF digital channel 35), is an ABC-affiliated television station licensed to Saint Paul, Minnesota, United States and serving the Twin Cities television market. It is the flagship television property of Saint Paul-based Hubbard Broadcasting, which has owned the station since its inception. KSTP-TV is part of a duopoly with Minneapolis-licensed independent station KSTC-TV (channel 45), and is also sister to radio stations KSTP (1500 AM), KSTP-FM (94.5), and KTMY (107.1 FM). The five outlets share studios on University Avenue, on the Saint Paul–Minneapolis border; KSTP-TV's transmitter is located at Telefarm Towers in Shoreview, Minnesota.

KSTP TV Logo.jpg
Saint PaulMinneapolis, Minnesota
United States
CitySaint Paul, Minnesota
ChannelsDigital: 35 (UHF)
Virtual: 5
BrandingChannel 5 (general)
5 Eyewitness News (newscasts)
SloganMinnesota's News Leader
Affiliations5.1: ABC (1979–present)
5.5: Independent
5.7: Heroes & Icons
OwnerHubbard Broadcasting
FoundedMay 1946 [1]
First air date
April 27, 1948 (73 years ago)
Former channel number(s)
5 (VHF, 1948–2009)
50 (UHF, 1999–2009)
NBC (1948–1979)
DuMont (1948–1956)[2]
Call sign meaning
derived from sister station KSTP radio
Technical information
Licensing authority
Facility ID28010
ERP755 kW
1,000 kW (application)
HAAT433 m (1,421 ft)
457 m (1,499 ft) (application)
Transmitter coordinates
Translator(s)See below
Public license information

KSTP-TV operates two full-power satellite stations: KSAX (virtual channel 42, UHF digital channel 24) in Alexandria (with transmitter near Westport), and KRWF (virtual channel 43, UHF digital channel 27) in Redwood Falls (with transmitter near Vesta). KSTP-TV also serves as the default ABC affiliate for the Mankato market, as that area does not have an ABC affiliate of its own. The station's signal is also relayed in St. James, Minnesota over translator K30FN-D, which also serves the Mankato market.

Nielsen Media Research treats KSTP-TV and its satellites as one station in local ratings books, using the identifier name KSTP+.



Stanley E. Hubbard, founder of KSTP radio, was one of broadcasting's foremost pioneers. In June 1939, he purchased one of the first television cameras available from RCA and began experimenting with television, but the television blackout brought on by World War II prevented any transmissions from being made. The first telecast by KSTP-TV reportedly occurred on December 7, 1947, when Jack Horner hosted a 25-minute program. On April 27, 1948, KSTP-TV signed on as the first commercial television station in Minnesota, although an experimental mechanical television station had been set up by WDGY station engineers more than a decade earlier. That station's license expired in 1938 as the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was not interested in continuing mechanical TV broadcasts.

KSTP-TV was originally an NBC affiliate, as KSTP radio had been an affiliate of the NBC Red Network since 1928. Channel 5 claims to have been the NBC television network's first affiliate located west of the Mississippi River; however, this distinction is actually held by KSD-TV (now KSDK) in St. Louis, which signed on one year earlier. (Also, both the studios and the transmitter are located east of the river.) It was part of NBC's Midwest Network, a regional group of NBC affiliates that fed programming in the days before the coaxial cable link to New York City. In 1961, due to its status as an NBC affiliate, it was the first television station not owned by a network to broadcast all of its local programs in color.

In the mid-1970s, ABC—which had become the top-rated television network in the United States—began looking for stronger affiliates across the country. KMSP-TV (channel 9), the Twin Cities' ABC affiliate since 1961, had long struggled in the ratings. ABC had approached independent station WTCN-TV (channel 11, now KARE), CBS affiliate WCCO-TV (channel 4), and KSTP-TV to affiliate with the network. Channel 5 surprised the industry in August 1978 by announcing its intention to sever ties with then third-place NBC after 30 years to join ABC. The affiliation switch occurred on March 5, 1979 and was ABC's biggest coup at the time; the NBC affiliation subsequently went to WTCN-TV that same day.[3] One of the last prime time NBC programs to air on channel 5 was The Wonderful World of Disney; the first ABC program to air in general on the station was Good Morning America, as announced by then-news anchor Stan Turner. Later on, the first prime time ABC program to air on the station was a first-run episode of the short-lived series, Salvage 1.[4][5] “We want to go into the 1980s in a leadership position with a network which we think has the management, team and depth to be the best. That's ABC. We're just absolutely thrilled,” said KSTP's Stanley S. Hubbard, son of station founder Stanley E. Hubbard.[6] In 2000, Hubbard Broadcasting purchased independent station KVBM-TV (channel 45; now KSTC), creating Minnesota's first commercial television station duopoly (though there is a longstanding public television duopoly: KTCA/KTCI).

KSTP-TV has used its "groovy 5" logo or variations on it since April 1969—it is the longest-used station logo in the Upper Midwest. By 1982, the design contained a white '5' on a red rounded edge square background. The number was italicized for a time in the mid-to-late 1980s. In the early 1990s, the logo endured a more dramatic makeover, with a gold colored '5' on a blue ABC-style disc (with either the call letters or the Eyewitness News name imprinted upon it), with the center colored in green. By the late 1990s, a brighter logo—still with a gold '5'—returned to the rectangular look, adding a black ABC logo. From 2004 to late 2014, a white '5' was used on a red parallelogram, also featuring the ABC logo. On November 30, 2014, the logo was redesigned, and now features the "groovy 5" logo in blue with red lines circling the left part of the logo, with the ABC logo again. On March 22, 2021, the logo got its current redesign, putting a white 5 inside a red "app" shaped square with rounded corners (an updated version of the 1982–1986 logo with the italicized white groovy 5 and the black ABC dot logo placed beside it). An updated graphics and music package debuted on the same day.

Broadcast center

Entrance to the KSTP studios on University Avenue in Minneapolis and Saint Paul, Minnesota. The sidewalk leading to the building lies precisely on the city and county line, as does the central leg of the tower.

KSTP-TV's studios and offices are located at 3415 University Avenue, precisely on the Minneapolis–St. Paul boundary. The sidewalk in the adjacent photo of the building is on the city line. The principal production facilities, including the news studio, are on the Minneapolis side of the building. However, the station has a St. Paul mailing address (55114-2099) and telephone number (area code 651) because its business and advertising offices are on the St. Paul side. The large 594-foot-tall (181 m) freestanding transmitting tower, which was amongst the tallest in the country when completed in 1948,[7] has one leg in each city, with the third leg precisely on the city line. This tower is primarily used as a studio transmitter link relaying the signals for both KSTP-TV and KSTP-FM to the Telefarm paired tower setup in Shoreview (shared with KSTP-FM, WCCO-TV, KARE, and WUCW), along with backup transmitter facilities in case of failure at Shoreview. The tower also houses the transmitter for KEC65, the NOAA Weather Radio station serving the Twin Cities area.

Satellite stations and translators


KSTP-TV operates two satellite stations northwest of the Twin Cities area. These two stations carry KSTP on their DT1 signal, KSTC on DT2, and MeTV on DT3, leaving the other three subchannel services exclusive to the Twin Cities.

Station City of license Channels
(RF / VC)
Licensee First air date Callsign meaning ERP HAAT Transmitter coordinates Facility ID Public license information
KSAX Alexandria 24 (UHF)
KSAX-TV, Inc. September 15, 1987 (33 years ago) KSTP for AleXandria 55.3 kW 361 m (1,184 ft) 35584 Profile
KRWF Redwood Falls 27 (UHF)
KSAX-TV, Inc. April 14, 1987 (34 years ago) K-RedWood Falls 58 kW 151 m (495 ft) 35585 Profile

KSAX's schedule was virtually identical to that of KSTP-TV, though it aired separate identifications and commercials. It also placed local inserts into KSTP's weeknight broadcasts. KRWF was a full-time repeater of KSAX. Expanding their operations in 1999, the stations hired their first meteorologist. This continued in 2004 with the launch of a half-hour high school sports highlight show.[8] The stations have won numerous broadcast journalism awards from various broadcaster associations. On June 25, 2012, Hubbard Broadcasting shut down KSAX/KRWF's local operations, converting the two stations into full-time satellites of KSTP-TV outside of occasional local advertising and community calendar notices.[9]


In addition, KSTP-TV's signal is further extended by way of twelve translators in central and southern Minnesota:


The broadcast signal of KSTC is extended by way of seven translators in central and southern Minnesota, along with KSAX-DT2 and KRWF-DT2. All broadcast in digital.

City of license Callsign Translating Channel ERP HAAT Facility ID Transmitter coordinates Owner
Alexandria K18DG-D KSAX-TV 18 1.56 kW 128 m (420 ft) 59635 Selective TV
Alexandria K17NW-D KSTC-TV 17 1.05 kW 128 m (420 ft) 198100 Selective TV
Bemidji K28DD-D KSAX-TV 28 15 kW 139 m (456 ft) 28009 KSAX-TV
Brainerd K16BQ-D KSAX-TV 16 (PSIP 16) 14 kW 154 m (505 ft) 28012 KSAX-TV
Frost K14KD-D KSTP-TV 14 3 kW 89 m (292 ft) 61028 Cooperative TV
Frost K34NV-D KSTC-TV 34 3 kW 90 m (295 ft) 61022 Cooperative TV
Jackson K17MY-D KSTP-TV 17 2 kW 92 m (302 ft) 125741 Cooperative TV
Jackson K29LV-D KSTC-TV 29 3.1 kW 92 m (302 ft) 21282 Cooperative TV
Olivia K21NS-D KSTP-TV 21 0.79 kW 87 m (285 ft) 55744 Renville County TV Corporation
Olivia K31OR-D KSTC-TV 31 0.79 kW 87 m (285 ft) 55743 Renville County TV Corporation
Park Rapids K32FY-D KSAX-TV 32 15 kW 200 m (656 ft) 27999 KSAX-TV
Redwood Falls K35NY-D KSTP-TV 35 0.5 kW 100 m (328 ft) 55449 Redwood TV Improvement Corporation
Redwood Falls K28LL-D KSTC-TV 28 0.382 kW 100 m (328 ft) 55448 Redwood TV Improvement Corporation
St. James K30FN-D
(in the Mankato market)
KSTP-TV 30 2 kW 298 m (978 ft) 28003 Cooperative TV
St. James K14KE-D
(in the Mankato market)
KSTC-TV 14 2 kW 298 m (978 ft) 13840 Cooperative TV
Wadena K17FE-D KSAX-TV 17 15 kW 138 m (453 ft) 27991 KSAX-TV
Walker K21HX-D KSAX-TV 42.1 21 (21.3) 3.3 kW 150 m (492 ft) 168763 Leech Lake Television
Walker K35KH-D KSTC-TV 5.2
35 (35.4)
35 (35.3)
4.1 kW 150 m (492 ft) 36959 Leech Lake Television
Willmar K19IH-D KSAX-TV 19 0.55 kW 155 m (509 ft) 68711 UHF TV, Inc.

Digital television

Digital channels

The stations' digital signals are multiplexed:

KSTP-TV/KSTC-TV digital channels

Channel Station &
Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[10]
5.1 KSTP
(RF 35)
720p 16:9 KSTPDT Main KSTP-TV programming / ABC
5.2 KSTC
(RF 30)
45TV Main KSTC-TV programming
5.3 480i MeTV MeTV[11][12]
5.4 Antenna Antenna TV
5.5 KSTP
(RF 35)
720p 45-TV Simulcast of KSTC-TV
5.6 KSTC
(RF 30)
480i ThisTV This TV
5.7 KSTP
(RF 35)
H & I Heroes & Icons

KSAX/KRWF digital channels

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[13]
42.1 43.1 720p 16:9 KSAX-DT KRWF-DT Main KSAX/KRWF programming / ABC
42.2 43.2 480i KSAXDT2 KRWFDT2 Simulcast of KSTC-TV 5.2
42.3 43.3 KSAXDT3 KRWFDT3 Simulcast of KSTC 5.3 / MeTV

Analog-to-digital conversion

KSTP-TV signed on its digital television signal in 1999. The station shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 5, on June 12, 2009, the official date in which full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station moved its digital signal from its pre-transition UHF channel 50 to channel 35.[14] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 5.

The station participated in the "Analog Nightlight" program until its analog transmitter was turned off for good on July 12, 2009.[15]


KSTP clears most ABC network programming. From 1982 to 1994, when nationally syndicated talk shows started ruling the daytime airwaves, KSTP ran a talk program of its own called Good Company, that was hosted by married couple Sharon Anderson and Steve Edelman. Both of them had appeared briefly in the movie Fargo as TV hosts, and continue to be recognized as area celebrities from time to time. Currently, Edelman runs Edelman Productions, a company that produces series for Food Network, HGTV, History and DIY Network, with his wife Anderson hosting a few of them. Edelman Productions is headquartered in California where both Edelman and Anderson now live, but it has offices both in California and Minnesota, where they produce their shows.

In 2007, KSTP decided to bring back an hour-long afternoon talk program similar to Good Company. Twin Cities Live, described as "a show about Minnesotans created by Minnesotans", began airing on April 21, 2008 and airs weekdays at 3:00 p.m.[16] A public casting call at the Mall of America attracted a Burnsville, Minnesota native, John Hanson, who was selected from over 500 people. A few months later, former Milwaukee news anchor Rebekah Wood was hired as his partner. Wood was replaced by Elizabeth Ries on June 15, 2009. Ries and Hanson co-hosted together for over three years until Hanson received an offer to become the program director of KCSP in Kansas City.[17] Hanson's last day on Twin Cities Live was December 21, 2012. Over the next four months, numerous television personalities served as guest co-hosts on TCL until the producers could find the best fit. KSTP weekend anchor Chris Egert was chosen to be Ries' new co-host on April 29, 2013.[18] Egert and Ries co-hosted the show for nine months until Egert was promoted to weekday morning news anchor in February 2014.[19] The station again had to go through a process of finding the next co-host, this time taking five months. On July 21, 2014, Steve Patterson was named the new co-host of TCL.[20] Patterson and Ries are the current hosts of Twin Cities Live. On April 16, 2018, close to ten years after the program first hit the airwaves, Twin Cities Live was expanded to 90 minutes to include an extra half-hour at 4:00 p.m. called Twin Cities Live at Four, also hosted by Patterson and Ries. The extra half-hour replaced Who Wants to Be a Millionaire (which was cancelled in May 2019) which was moved to 2:00 p.m.

The title Twin Cities Live was first used from 1985 to 1991 for a short-lived morning talk show that debuted at a time when KSTP was trying to reinvent its news image. The other talk show that airs on KSTP-TV is Live with Kelly and Ryan, which has aired on KSTP since the late 1980s under prior hosts Kathie Lee Gifford and Regis Philbin.

During the trial of Derek Chauvin, KSTP launched a digital subchannel showing the court feed without commentary.[21]

News operation

KSTP-TV presently broadcasts 37 hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with six hours each weekday and 3½ hours each on Saturdays and Sundays). In addition, the station produces a political discussion show called At Issue, which is hosted by Tom Hauser, and Sports Wrap, a sports highlight program that airs on Sunday evenings at 10:45 p.m. and on special occasions, such as when KSTP airs ESPN Monday Night Football telecasts featuring the Minnesota Vikings, or the final game of the NBA Finals. The station formerly ran a Friday night edition of the program focusing on high school sports that aired from September through May. These segments were usually hosted by Rod Simons and Anne Hutchinson, but Simons was later fired by the station in 2008 and Hutchinson also was let go in December of that year. A week prior to Hutchinson's departure, High School Sports Wrap was canceled due to low revenues.[22] For much of the time since the 1980s, KQRS-FM morning show host Tom Barnard has served as the station's voice-over announcer.

A longtime trademark of the station is the use of the letter "V" in Morse code (standing for 'victory') as a sonic identity, a hallmark of Stanley E. Hubbard's operation of the KSTP stations since World War II, when he held an interest in teaching Morse code to his listening audience.[23][24]

For a time in the early 1990s, KSTP aired overnight news under the banner of Eyewitness News All Night, featuring half-hour local news blocks, alternating with blocks of content from the Hubbard-owned All News Channel (which originated from KSTP's facilities and utilized the station's on-air personalities).[citation needed]

The station ran advertisements in 2005 featuring Ed Asner (emulating Lou Grant).[25]

Meteorologist Dave Dahl was hired in 1977, began doing on-air weather reporting in 1979, and was named chief meteorologist in 1986. Dahl denies global warming and states that the earth has been stable or cooling for the last two decades.[26] Dave Dahl retired at the end of 2020.

Equipment inside a KSTP-TV news van.

Joe Schmit was a sports reporter and later sports director from 1985, until switching to news anchor in 2005; Schmit left the station in June 2006 to join Petters Media and Marketing Group.[27] After the collapse of the company and the arrest and conviction of founder Tom Petters, Schmit returned to KSTP-TV on January 14, 2010.[28]

On May 12, 2006, KSTP debuted a half-hour newscast at 4 p.m. On September 10, 2007, it was moved to 4:30 p.m., serving as a lead-in to the 5 p.m. newscast. For the first year, KSTP began to have news competition in that timeslot, when KARE debuted an online/television lifestyle program at 4 p.m. in May 2007. KSTP began broadcasting its newscasts in high-definition on June 14, 2009, the first Hubbard-owned station and also, the last major network station in the Twin Cities to do so (KMSP and WCCO had already transitioned their local newscasts to HD the previous month, on May 11 and 28, respectively).[29] On August 30, 2010, KSTP expanded its weekday morning newscast a half-hour earlier, now running from 4:30 to 7 a.m.[30]

On-air staff

Notable former on-air staff

Carriage in Canada

On September 11, 2014, KSTP-TV filed a complaint with the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) regarding its carriage in Canada and simultaneous substitution (simsubbing), as well as notifying the CRTC of viewer complaints of problems with closed captioning and poorly-timed simsubbing on its cable feed in Canada. In particular, KSTP is stating it is authorized for broadcast by the FCC, and not the CRTC, and is concerned that it may not have the appropriate broadcast rights for viewing in Canada. Hubbard Broadcasting, the owners of KSTP-TV, also argued concerns about their video feed being modified for Canadian viewers via simsubbing, removal of its closed-captioning information (a Broadcast Act violation, if proven), not having its digital subchannels carried as well, and that this might be a potential Copyright Act of Canada violation for its programming to air in Canada. Similar to other American stations , KSTP has also asked for compensation for its carriage in Canada or to have its unauthorized coverage cease, as it was never asked for permission to be relayed on cable services in Canada.[31] The CRTC ultimately ruled against KSTP-TV on September 16, 2014 regarding their request to be removed from the CRTC's list of stations eligible for carriage in Canada, a fear that was shared by Shaw Media (owners of Shaw Direct/Shaw Cable/CANCOM) and Thunder Bay MP Bruce Hyer. A secondary concern posed by Shaw Media was that KSTP-TV would try to ask for fee-for-carriage in a cross-border retransmission consent agreement, which does not currently exist under the Copyright Act of Canada, and as the CRTC explained, is outside the scope of the Broadcast Act of 1968 or its regulatory responsibilities.[32]

See also


  1. ^ "Nine television stations authorized by FCC." [permanent dead link] Broadcasting - Telecasting, May 20, 1946, pg. 94.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "ABC-TV bags largest game yet in affiliation hunt: KSTP-TV." Broadcasting, September 4, 1978, pp. 19-20. [1] [permanent dead link][2] [permanent dead link]
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Archived copy" . Archived from the original on July 5, 2009. Retrieved February 28, 2010.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ "Antenna Structure Registration 1047451" . Cavell, Mertz & Associates, Inc. June 18, 2021. Retrieved June 20, 2021.
  8. ^
  9. ^ [permanent dead link]
  10. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KSTP
  11. ^ Where to Watch Me-TV: KSTP
  12. ^ Me-TV Signs With Stations in New Markets
  13. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KSTP
  14. ^ "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on August 29, 2013. Retrieved March 24, 2012.
  15. ^
  16. ^ - Twin Cities Live launches April 21 at 3pm
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^ "How to watch live coverage of the Derek Chauvin trial" . KSTP. March 26, 2021. Retrieved March 30, 2021.
  22. ^ "Minn Post - David Brauer - 12-05-08" . Archived from the original on December 8, 2008. Retrieved December 8, 2008.
  23. ^ "KSTP Morse Code Lessons, 1942" . Broadcasting. April 27, 1942. Retrieved June 3, 2020.
  24. ^ "KSTP-TV "The World Today" Opening and Sports segment from April 22, 1972" . TC Media Now. Retrieved June 3, 2020.
  25. ^ Meyer, Joel (October 17, 2005). "Twin Cities Tradition: Hubbard's historic KSTP faces new challenges" . Reed Elsevier. Retrieved November 26, 2007.
  26. ^ KSTP's Dave Dahl: Sun, not man, changes climate Archived July 3, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  27. ^ Minneapolis Star Tribune - Judd Zulgad - 7-30-06 Archived November 22, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  28. ^
  29. ^
  30. ^ [3]
  31. ^
  32. ^

External links


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