call_letters = WSAV-TV
station_slogan = WSAV 3 - On Your Side
station_branding = WSAV 3 (general)
News 3 (newscasts)
analog = 3 (VHF)
digital = 39 (UHF)
subchannels = (see article)
also from 1956-1982)
February 1, 1956
callsign_meaning = SAVannah
owner = Media General, Inc.
licensee = Media General Communications Holdings, LLC
former_affiliations = ABC (secondary, 1956-1970; primary 1982-1986)
effective_radiated_power = 100 kW (analog)
1000 kW (digital)
HAAT = 442 m (both)
facility_id = 48662
coordinates = coord|32|3|31.5|N|81|17|54.1|W|type:landmark_scale:2000
homepage = [http://www.wsav.com/ www.wsav.com]
WSAV-TV, channel 3, is the
NBCaffiliate in Savannah, Georgiaand covers southeastern Georgia and extreme southern South Carolina. Its transmitter is located in Bloomingdale, Georgia.
WSAV-TV went on the air
February 1, 1956, co-owned with WSAV-AM 630 (now WBMQ). It initially broadcast from a facility atop a bank building on Broughton Street in downtown Savannah. The flashing WSAV sign was a landmark on Broughton Street for many years. WSAV-AM had long been an NBC affiliate, so WSAV-TV naturally took the NBC television affiliation. However, it shared ABC with CBSaffiliate WTOC-TVuntil WJCL-TVsigned on in 1970.
In 1960, WSAV-AM-TV moved into a brand new facility on
Victory Drive, where WSAV-TV still is today. A new tower was built at the site boosting its signal to many of the surrounding counties in Georgia and South Carolina, giving thousands of viewers their first chance to see television. In 1976, another new tower was built and the WSAV television signal reached out even further. In the same year, WSAV-AM was sold off.
Just a few months later, WSAV expanded the news department, moving into a former insurance office next door to the Victory Drive studio.
In 1982, WSAV swapped affiliations with WJCL and became an ABC affiliate. ABC had become the #1 network in the country, and had been searching for stronger affiliates across the country. However, just four years later, channel 3 returned to NBC in 1986, one year after NBC became #1 again.
In the mid-1990s, like many other commercial television stations in the U.S., WSAV was sold several times. Between 1996 and 1997, both WSAV (acquired from Ellis Communications) and rival station
WTOC-TV(acquired from Aflac) were owned by the same company ( Raycom Media), a situation that did not last long due to FCC regulations prohibiting ownership of two of the four largest stations in a market. In 1997, Media Generaltraded WTVR-TVin Richmond, Virginiafor WSAV and two other stations.
Recently, the station acquired the local rights to the syndicated
game shows"Wheel of Fortune" and " Jeopardy!". Both shows were previously shown on rival WJCL-TVfor almost two decades.
February 1, 2006, WSAV officially celebrated its 50th anniversary. To commemorate the event, Savannah Mayor Otis Johnsonofficially announced February 1, 2006 as "WSAV Day" and lauded the station for its many achievements over the decades and the station's continued service to its viewers, always "On Your Side" whenever a viewer needs to get a story out.
The station carries
My Network TVand Retro Television Networkon a digital subchannel -- My Network TV is seen during prime-time, with RTN seen at other hours of the day. This digital subchannel is also available to DirecTVcustomers in Savannah on channel 29. It is known on-air as "My TV". WSAV's website features a generic My Network TV logo.
"The Weather with "Captain Sandy"
Channel 3 was known for an unusual practice on its newscasts in the 1950s and 1960s. WSAV was home to "Captain Sandy", who was something of a hybrid between a weatherman and children's show host. The character gave the weather on the evening newscasts, working with
puppet sidekicks "Wilbur the Weather Bird," "Arthur Mometer" (our thermometer), and "Calamity Clam."
Captain Sandy would appear on the news set wearing a vaguely
nauticalcap and blazer, a nod to the region's dependence on the Atlantic Ocean. His introduction, sung by an off-screen group, went as follows:
:"Yo ho, yo ho, what’s the weather going to be? Here's the man who knows, let's take a look and see. Here is Captain Sandy with the weather he has found, for Savannah and for Chatham and the counties all around."
Captain Sandy’s big thermometer was temperamental and would fidget before revealing tomorrow’s high.
The fun part came when Captain Sandy opened Davey Jones’ locker to get the tide information (a crucial component of any weather forecast in the region) out of Calamity Clam, who always tried to bite the captain.
By the end of the 1970s, new station ownership found Captain Sandy's routine embarrassing (and likely anachronistic, since most U.S. TV stations had discontinued their local children's shows years before), and they made the Captain finally conform to convention, prescribing him a suit and tie like the other newscasters. The owners also fired the puppets shortly after, to the almost-certain sorrow of area children.
The personality behind the Captain Sandy character, smooth-voiced Joe Cox, later left WSAV to become weatherman at cross-town rival WJCL, where he also hosted an evening radio program on
WJCL-FM. The original Captain Sandy, from 1956, was Norm Strand.
Kim Gusby is the host WSAV Coastal Sunrise from 5am-7am.
Tina Tyus-Shaw and Russ Riesinger anchor WSAV NEWS3 at 6 and 11.
In 2004 WSAV News 3 at 6 won the National
Edward R. Murrowaward for Best Newscast.
WSAV was the featured city during
Al Roker's weather forecast on NBC's "Today" on Monday, April 23, 2007. Roker referred to the station as "WSAV - NBC3".
After the analog television shutdown and digital conversion, which is scheduled to take place on February 17, 2009 http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-06-1082A2.pdf] , WSAV-TV will remain on its current pre-transition channel number, 39. [http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/cgi-bin/ws.exe/prod/cdbs/forms/prod/cdbsmenu.hts?context=25&appn=101232694&formid=387&fac_num=48662 CDBS Print ] ] http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/prod/cdbs/forms/prod/getattachment_exh.cgi?exhibit_id=676171] However, through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers will display WSAV-TV's
virtual channelas 3.
Tina Tyus-Shaw: 6 and 11 pm (worked at WSAV since 1992)
*Russ Riesinger: 6 and 11 pm (worked at WSAV since
*Kim Gusby: Coastal Sunrise (worked at WSAV since
*Alaina Anderson: Weekend Anchor (worked at WSAV since
*Kris Posman: Chief Meteorologist (worked at WSAV since
*Lee Haywood: Coastal Sunrise (worked at WSAV since
*Ken Slats: Sports Director (since 2008)
*James Aydelott: Meteorologist,
KXAS-TV, Dallas, TX
*Jesse Blanco: Anchor,
KDBC-TV, El Paso, TX
*Lyndy Brannen: Anchor,
WJCL-TV, Savannah, GA
*Tom Chisholm: Meteorologist,
WMTW-TV, Portland, ME
*Dianne Derby: Anchor/Reporter,
WSPA-TV, Spartanburg, SC
*Mike Fuori: Meteorologist
*Brad Huffines: Meteorologist,
WAAY-TV, Huntsville, AL
*Dave Kartunen: Anchor/Reporter,
WSVN-TV, Miami, FL
*Jayme King: Meteorologist,
KSAZ-TV, Phoenix, AZ
*Steve LaPointe: Meteorologist,
WRGB-TV, Albany, NY
*Tim McGinnis: Anchor/Managing Editor,
WHOI-TV, Peoria, IL
*Jed Mescon: Anchor/Reporter,
WRCB-TV, Chattanooga, TN
*Sheila Parker: Anchor/Reporter,
KDBC-TV, El Paso, TX
Paul Rea: Anchor/Reporter
*Ben Smith: Meteorologist
*Glenn Zimmerman: Reporter,
WNBC-TV, New York, NY
* [http://www.wsav.com/ WSAV-TV homepage]
* [http://www.wsav.com/midatlantic/sav/entertainment/mytv.html WSAV-DT2 homepage]
* [http://www.myspace.com/captsandy Captain Sandy fan site]
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