Thursday, October 09, 2008

Toledo and Tampa

Two TV-related items, both involving cities with names starting with the letter "T". (Hey, it's what passes for creativity around here!)

TOLEDO TV RADIO NEWS: Toledo ABC O&O WTVG/13 and the Cumulus cluster in the Glass City are crowing about their new alliance.

The Toledo Blade reports that seven Cumulus radio stations in Toledo will be getting weather, news and sports updates from the "13ABC" folks.

The deal apparently doesn't include, at least according to the Blade article, top 40 WTWR/98.3 "Tower 98-3", which has all but fully left the Cumulus Toledo cluster to directly serve north suburban Monroe MI. We hear "Tower" is now being completely run out of Michigan, with the exception of some production services being done in Toledo.

Weather is the big part of this deal, as the entire WTVG team of forecasters will join 13ABC's Bill Spencer on the Cumulus stations. Spencer has already been a contributor to the morning team at country WKKO/99.9 "K100" and oldies WRQN/93.5.

The deal also calls for news updates to be provided to Cumulus by WTVG, though we don't know if this affects existing news director London Mitchell's presence on WKKO, WRQN and talk WTOD/1560 "SuperTalk 1560".

We also don't know if the promised local sports updates will displace local updates we've heard on sports WLQR/1470 "The Ticket".

The Blade article says the partnership starts "in a few weeks"...and will expand through the end of the year...

SHE MOVES IN TAMPA: Since Florida isn't a usual stop for us, we'll have to explain this one.

Stephanie Roberts, who's been a fill-in weather forecaster at Tampa CBS affiliate WTSP/10, has been tapped to be morning weather forecaster at the market's ABC affiliate, WFTS/28. (She had also filled in there before WTSP.)

And that's where things start falling into place for us, as Roberts had a good run right here in Cleveland, leaving Scripps ABC affiliate WEWS/5's "Good Morning Cleveland" in 2005 to head for Florida.

St. Petersburg Times TV/media critic Eric Deggans mentions that in his item on the changes, reminding us that WFTS is a Scripps-owned sister station to "NewsChannel 5" here.

Roberts' bio from her days at WEWS is still up on telling viewers that the Chicago-area native and Penn State grad came to Cleveland in 1999 from Toledo NBC affiliate WNWO/24 to do news, weather and even sports at Raycom CBS affiliate WOIO/19. She moved to WEWS to take the "GMC" forecasting job in 2002.

The other article linked from NewsNet5 above also reminds us that Roberts was replaced on "GMC" by Susanne Horgan. We reported earlier that Horgan is moving to weekends, and that her WEWS contract will be allowed to expire without being renewed...

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