WMAQ's Paula Faris and Dick Johnson attend the gala opening of the Museum of Broadcast Communications.
Chicago’s TV news anchors and reporters were out in force for a sneak preview open house at the city’s new Museum of Broadcast Communications Thursday night. Joined by Gov. Pat Quinn
, Mayor Rahm Emanuel
, and Museum President Bruce DuMont
, the event officially marks the end of major construction of the 62,000 square foot, stand-alone facility.
“Phil Donahue, Oprah Winfrey, Kukla, Fran and Ollie, Dave Garroway, Paul Harvey - the broadcast history of this city is just amazing,” legendary WGN meteorologist Tom Skilling tells TVSpy. “We really have a story to tell here. I think [the museum] is going to be of great interest. Bringing together the stories of these amazing broadcasters who have influenced broadcasting on a national scale is well worth telling.”
Local journos on hand included WBBM’s Bill Kurtis and Rob Johnson, former WBBMer Donna LaPietra, WMAQ’s Dick Johnson and Paula Faris, WLS’s Valerie Warner, former WLSer Andy Shaw, and former WMAQer Chet Coppock.
Mayor Emanuel noted that the museum is fitting for a city that hosted the nation’s first televised presidential debate, between John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon in 1960.
Party attendees got a glimpse at historic TV artifacts, including one of the cameras used during the JFK-Nixon matchup, an original Charlie McCarthy puppet, and the doorway that Oprah