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Posts Tagged ‘WGN’

Chicago Station Creates Weather Themed Game App Featuring Chief Meteorologist

skillingWGNgameChicago CW affiliate WGN has launched a mobile game app featuring its chief meteorologist called “Tom Skilling‘s WGN Weather Challenge.”

The object of the free smartphone game is to move Skilling across the screen while avoiding bad weather and collecting good weather. When Skilling runs out of time, the game is over.

Players will be able to see how they stack up against each other on a leaderboard and can check out the local weather on the station’s website at the end of the game.

The app, developed by Cubicle Ninjas, is available through the Apple Store next Thursday and through Google Play by February 2014.

Fans Get Tattoo of WGN Morning Anchor on Live TV

robinfaceUnlike most anchor teams, tattoos last forever. That didn’t stop three fans of WGN morning anchor Robin Baumgarten from getting their favorite anchor’s face indelibly inked into their skin on live TV this morning.

Last week, the morning team for the Chicago CW affiliate interviewed Kidd Joe owner of the Tat Cave who was offering free Robin tattoos to anyone who wanted one. Kidd Joe told WGN they had 16 people who were interested. This morning three people lined up to take advantage of the offer.

Ana Belaval asked the first guy known only as David about his 15th tattoo. “She is a symbol of my childhood,” he said. “I’ve been watching Robin since I was a little boy.” Now, thanks to permanent ink and lack of impulse control, he’ll be watching her when he is very old man. Watch the video after the jump. Read more

WGN in Danger of Losing Broadcast Rights to Cubs Games

wgn_304The Chicago Tribune reports the Chicago Cubs have given the Tribune Company, and in effect, CW affiliate WGN 30 days to agree to paying higher fees for the 2015 season and beyond or see broadcast rights for the team be opened up for other media outlets to bid on.

The big deal here?  The Tribune owned station has broadcast the Cubs since 1948. In 1981, Tribune bought the team from the Wrigley family before selling it to the Ricketts family in 2009.

“It would be a tremendous loss because WGN and the Cubs have been synonymous forever. In the embryonic days of television, we were there,” Jack Rosenberg, longtime sports editor for WGN told The Chicago Sun-Times. “We were with the Cubs in the beginning stages of radio much, much earlier. It’s been a tremendous partnership, a family deal of sorts. Let’s hope that there could be some meeting of the minds before this is all hashed out.’’ Read more

Billy Corgan of Smashing Pumpkins Serenades WGN Reporter

corgan_belavalLast we saw WGN’s Ana Belaval she was watching a man hammer a nail into his nasal cavity.

This time, the feature reporter for the Chicago CW affiliate drew a better assignment and got to interview Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan.

Corgan and Belaval sat at a piano in Madame ZuZu’s Tea Shop while Corgan tickled the ivories and Belaval’s heartstrings by singing, “Never before have I been interviewed by someone as lovely as you. Your questions are sublime. Your mind is in my mind forevermore.”

Belaval told Corgan he was a good liar before asking him to say her name. Corgan complied by singing, “Anna again, Anna Again, Anna Again. Your heart is mine forevermore.” Which prompted her to say, “In your face Belaval,” which was probably a shout out to her husband.

Click here to view the video

WGN Hangs Up on Oprah: ‘We’re in Trouble Now’

Oops: Chicago CW affiliate WGN accidentally hung up on Oprah Winfrey during a phone interview this morning.

Oprah was WGN’s first guest on the expanded morning newscast. She was talking about the new OWN season when the call suddenly went to a dial tone. “This is so typical,” Robin Baumgarten said. “… How do we cut off the one guest we’ve had that people may be interested in watching?”

After a brief pause, Oprah was reconnected to the anchors in the studio. “Y’all got a few kinks to work out,” she joked. Watch the video after the jump. Read more

Q2 Earnings: Tribune Broadcasting Revenue Falls 20%

Tribune Co. reported $260 million in broadcast revenues for the second quarter of 2013, down -20% from $327 million in the year-ago quarter. The decline includes $41 million in one-time copyright royalties paid to WGN, Tribune’s CW affiliate in Chicago, in 2012.

Advertising revenue also declined $17 million in the quarter, primarily at WGN and WPIX, the CW affiliate in New York City. Tribune says WPIX continues to be impacted by the Cablevision blackout last year and WGN’s performance has been impacted by lower sports revenue. Retransmission and carriage fees were up 15% for the quarter.

“While our second quarter financial results reflect many of the same challenges faced by the other companies in our sector, we have made substantial progress strategically repositioning Tribune for long term growth,” Tribune president and CEO Peter Liguori said in a statement.

WGN Announces Morning Show Expansion and Changes to On-Air Lineup

Chicago CW affiliate WGN has announced changes to its on-air lineup and an expanded morning news.

Starting September 3, Dan Ponce will join Erin McElroy as co-anchor of the WGN Morning News at 4:00 and 5:00 a.m. Before coming to WGN in 2010, Ponce was a reporter at the Chicago ABC owned station WLS.

“News, music and humor – there’s only one newscast in the city where I can do all three,” said Ponce in a statement. “I’m thrilled to be joining Chicago’s most popular morning TV team.  It’s going to be a big adjustment waking up that early, but anchoring with Erin McElroy every day will make it well worth it.” Read more

Chief Meteorologist Tom Skilling Marks 35 Years with WGN

Tom Skilling, chief meteorologist for Chicago CW affiliate WGN, celebrated 35 years with the station this week.

The station marked the occasion yesterday after his 9:00 p.m. forecast with a low-key mention from anchor Micah Materre, “35 years on the air here,” said Materre. “35 years, isn’t that something?” replied Skilling. “Congratulations!” said Materre. They then showed footage of Skilling in the early years doing his forecast wearing the yellow team blazer with the nine on the breast pocket. “That was burlap,” Skilling said of his blazer.

Last year, Skilling signed a new 10 year multimillion dollar contract. Shortly after signing he told Chicago media writer Robert Feder, “I have marveled at the support I’ve received from my viewers all these years — at their loyalty and kindness. We are nothing in our line of work without those who offer us the gift of taking time out of their busy days to grace us with the honor of checking out what we do and what we have to say. I’m beyond words over the whole thing.”

As part of the celebration of his 35 year tenure, Skilling, along with the some of the WGN weather team, sang “Take Me Out to The Ballgame” during the 7th inning stretch at yesterday’s Cubs game against the Cincinnati Reds. As a side note, listen to the Cubs announcer put the wrong em-PHA-sis on the wrong sy-LLAB-le when pronouncing meteorologist. For the record, the Reds blanked the Cubbies 5 to zip.

You can watch video of Materre wishing Skilling happy anniversary and Skilling singing at the Cubs game after the jump. Read more

WGN Anchor Squirms as Man Hammers Nail into His Nose During Live Shot

When WGN anchors Robin Baumgarten and Frank Holland tossed to feature reporter Ana Belaval for her “Around Town” segment, they probably had little idea they would leave viewers of the Chicago CW affiliate morning show wondering which was more entertaining, seeing a man hammer a nail into his nose or listening to Baumgarten freaking out about it. Watch the video after the jump.

The segment started out with Belaval saying, “I’m holding a nail and he’s holding a hammer. This never turns out good,” while standing next to Joe Diamond, a local magician.

Viewers watched Diamond at work while hearing things like, “It’s on TV!” or “Oh God! Come on,” and “Gross! Stop!” from Baumgarten back in the studio. By the time he pulled the nail out, Baumgarten had turned around with her back to camera and even Belaval had checked out. See the video inside. Read more

Meteorologist Demetrius Ivory Joining WGN

Demetrius Ivory will be joining Chicago CW affiliate WGN as a morning meteorologist.

“As we expand our WGN Morning News to 10am, we look forward to Demetrius joining our ‘must watch’ Morning News,” WGN news director Greg Caputo said in a statement. “Demetrius brings a real enthusiasm for meteorology to his work.  His on-air personality and warmth will fit well with our Morning News team.”

Ivory, who will anchor the weather from 4:00 to 6:00 am on WGN, comes from WTAE in Pittsburgh where he was also the morning meteorologist. He’s also worked at WYTV in Youngstown, OH, and WOHL in Lima, OH.

[Robert Feder]

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