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Aug 23 2007

Central Pa. station promises local focus


A low-powered TV station near State College says it will soon provide Central Pennsylvania with a unique, local focus, according to the Centre Daily Times. General Manager Sam Jordan Jr. claims the programming will be a “labor of love” and offer content not seen on stations in Johnstown and Altoona.

Owned by Pathway Community Radio Inc. of Jamestown, N.Y., and licensed to nearby Bellefonte, W13BY-CA is currently rebroadcasting religious programming from Pittsburgh-based Cornerstone TeleVision on Channel 13, but will switch to a new, local feed from studios on Benner Pike starting Sept. 3.

The 223-watt station has been on the air since 1990; it previously served as an outlet for the “Video Jukebox Network” and as a repeater for WJAC-TV (6) in Johnstown. Pathway purchased the station three years ago for a reported $49,000.

Still, although Jordan promises local public affairs and news coverage from Centre County, much of the day’s schedule will be filled with syndicated programs like “The 700 Club” and courtroom shows, and the station is negotiating with an unnamed network to become its State College affiliate.

Jordan, who was part of a similar effort at WRDE-TV in Rehoboth Beach, Del., says the State College area is the number one growth market in Central Pennsylvania and offers plenty of room for expansion; the station is also seeking a translator to rebroadcast its signal to Altoona and Johnstown.

Pathway’s owner is Sinan Mimaroglu, general manager of central New York-based Armstrong Transmitter Corp., which builds AM, FM and VHF broadcasting equipment.