KEZI, virtual and VHF digital channel 9, is an ABC-affiliated television station licensed to Eugene, Oregon, United States. The station is owned by Allen Media Broadcasting, a subsidiary of Los Angeles-based Entertainment Studios. KEZI's studios are located on Chad Drive in Eugene, and its transmitter is located on East Prairie Mountain near Horton, Oregon.
|Channels||Digital: 9 (VHF)|
Virtual: 9 (PSIP)
|Branding||KEZI 9 (general)|
KEZI 9 News (newscasts)
9.3: Ion Television
|Owner||Allen Media Broadcasting |
(Oregon TV License Company LLC)
First air date
|December 19, 1960|
Former call signs
Former channel number(s)
9 (VHF, 1960–2009)
44 (UHF, 2000–2009)
Call sign meaning
|"EZ on the I"|
(Former slogan: "Easy on the eye")
|HAAT||738 m (2,421 ft)|
|Translator(s)||K27CL-D Coos Bay/North Bend|
Public license information
This section may be too technical for most readers to understand.(May 2019)
A group of Eugene investors, including former Chevrolet dealer Julio Silva and his daughter, Carolyn S. Chambers, formed Liberty Communications and were granted a license for Eugene's second television station in 1959. KEZI first went on the air at 6:30 p.m. on December 19, 1960. Its original studios and offices were located at 2225 Coburg Road, with the transmitter being sited in the Coburg Hills just to the northeast of the city. During its inaugural broadcast, KEZI said that it was Eugene's first full-power television station; with a power of 316 kW, KEZI reached 146,000 viewers.
Prior to this, programming from all three major networks (ABC, CBS, NBC) was shown on KVAL-TV (channel 13). When KEZI began broadcasting, it became Eugene's primary ABC affiliate while also taking on a secondary CBS affiliation. This was an unusual arrangement in a two-station market, particularly one as small as Eugene. ABC had long been the smallest and weakest of the three major networks, and its stature would not be comparable to that of CBS and NBC until about 1970. In most two-station markets at the time, ABC was relegated to secondary status.
KEZI usually broadcast select CBS programming in off-hours, though Eugene viewers had been able to watch the full CBS lineup since the mid-1950s, when cable operators piped in Portland CBS affiliate KOIN-TV. However, channel 9 aired CBS' NFL regular-season games live from 1965 and through to the mid-1970s.
In October 1982, KMTR (channel 16) began broadcasting in Eugene, carrying the full NBC programming schedule. This resulted in KEZI choosing to become a full-time ABC affiliate and making KVAL the primary CBS affiliate.
Liberty grew during its first 24 years, becoming one of the nation's largest cable-system operators. In 1983, Tele-Communications Inc. purchased Liberty's cable and television assets. Carolyn Chambers formed Chambers Communications and purchased several former Liberty entities, including KEZI. Chambers Communications then bought Medford ABC affiliate KDRV and KDKF, its satellite in Klamath Falls.
On February 14, 1998, KEZI moved from its Coburg Road location to the recently completed Chambers Media Center (CMC). The 100,000-square-foot (9,300 m2) complex was home to most Chambers Communications projects. It housed five sound stages, making it one of the largest such facilities on the West Coast at the time. Chambers Productions' two films, Puerto Vallarta Squeeze and The Sisters, were shot at the CMC and elsewhere in Eugene. KEZI has a fully digital master control and an advanced newsroom facility.
In September 2006, Chambers Communications established KOHD in Bend, Oregon. Broadcasting on channel 51, KOHD was an ABC affiliate and sister station to KEZI. As it never broadcast in analog, KOHD was the first primary digital station to carry a major network affiliation. KOHD was sold to the Zolo Media division of BendBroadband in 2013.
Chambers Communications announced on March 5, 2014 that it would leave broadcasting and sell its stations to Heartland Media, a company owned by former Gray Television executive Bob Prather. The sale was completed on July 15. Heartland had recently added CBS affiliate KHSL-TV in Chico, California to its holdings, making KEZI and KDRV sister stations.
Dish Network disputeEdit
KEZI announced on December 10, 2010 that Chambers Communications could not reach an agreement to keep its stations on Dish Network's local feeds, leaving viewers in those areas in danger of losing local ABC programming. Their agreement expired on December 15, and the stations were removed from the local Dish Network lineup. Chambers and Dish reached an agreement to resume service, and the stations returned to Dish Network on December 30.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|9.1||720p||16:9||KEZI-HD||Main KEZI programming / ABC|
KEZI shut down its analog VHF channel 9 signal on February 17, 2009, the original date on which full-power television stations in the United States were to change from analog to digital broadcasts by federal mandate; the deadline was later pushed back to June 12. The station's digital signal moved from UHF channel 44 to VHF channel 9.
KEZI's broadcast schedule is dominated by news, local features and ABC network programming. Sports is also a significant part of KEZI programming, with Oregon Ducks football and basketball and ABC's extensive sports coverage. In addition to ABC programming, KEZI airs the syndicated Judge Judy and Live with Kelly and Ryan. The station has aired reruns of Star Trek, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Taxi. KEZI pioneered high-definition television (HDTV) programming in the Eugene market by airing a locally originated Oregon Ducks football game in late 2005, coordinating the broadcast with the Oregon Sports Network and ESPN Plus.
News department and subchannelsEdit
The station's news department serves most of southwestern Oregon. KEZI's sister stations, KDRV and KDKF, share news and video with the station. The news department also has bureaus in Corvallis, Roseburg and Coos Bay. KEZI relies on ABC NewsOne and CNN for national stories, and carries Portland-area stories from KATU and KGW. Weather is reported by chief meteorologist Marisa Woloszyn and meteorologists Andrew Shipotofsky and Andy Moffitt. Although KEZI was the longtime flagship of the Oregon Sports Network (the TV network for University of Oregon football, basketball and other sports), Chambers Communications terminated its relationship with the OSN in 2008.
In March 2010, newscasts began originating from a temporary set in the newsroom while a new set was constructed and other upgrades were made to prepare for HD. Chambers Communications' cancellation of long-form newscasts at KOHD, KEZI's sister station in Bend, facilitated the upgrade. On April 26 of that year, KEZI became the first Eugene station to broadcast local news in high definition; newscasts on KVAL, KMTR, and KLSR-TV remained in 16:9 enhanced definition widescreen until 2020.
KEZI 9+ Nonstop News (2011–13)Edit
KEZI introduced a 24-hour local-news service, KEZI 9+ Nonstop News, on over-the-air digital channel 9.2 in January 2011. It broadcasts local news and a three-hour block of children's programming to comply with FCC requirements for educational programs. That autumn 9+ began airing the Friday Night Blitz Game of the Week, local live telecasts of high-school football. This was followed by the Roundball Wrap Game of the Week, local live telecasts of high-school basketball, during the winter of 2012. Both programs are similar to those broadcast by sister station KDRV NewsWatch 12+.
Live Well Network Western Oregon (2013–14)Edit
On September 9, 2013, KEZI 9.2 replaced KEZI 9+ with Live Well Network Western Oregon. Live Well Network is a home, health and lifestyle high-definition digital subchannel network owned by Disney-ABC Television Group and operated by the ABC Owned Television Stations. KEZI stopped carrying the subchannel on October 31, 2014.
MeTV Western Oregon (2014–present)Edit
KEZI 9.2 began airing MeTV, which carries shows from the 1950s through the 1980s, the following day. MeTV Western Oregon is broadcast over the air on channel 9.2, on Charter channel 186, Comcast channel 309 and on Country Vision Cable 24. KEZI continues to carry the Friday Night Blitz and Roundball Wrap Game of the Week on channel 9.2.
Awards and former staffEdit
Former evening-news anchor Rick Dancer (who spent 16 years at KEZI) and Al Peterson were highlighted in the Oregon Associated Press Best Feature category for Division II in 2005. KEZI received several Oregon Associated Press awards in 2010, including one for overall excellence. Lisa Verch Fletcher was the evening-news anchor until 2002. Ron Magers later spent over 45 years with stations in St. Paul and Chicago before his retirement on May 25, 2016.
|City of license||Callsign||Channel||ERP||HAAT||Facility ID||Transmitter coordinates||Owner|
|Camas Valley||K23ME-D||23||0.5 kW||471 m (1,545 ft)||190170||Allen Media Broadcasting|
|K27CL-D||27||5.6 kW||210 m (689 ft)||34405|
|Cottage Grove||K24LY-D||24||0.2 kW||138 m (453 ft)||61130||South Lane Television.|
|Elkton||KEZI (DRT)||23||0.34 kW||34406||Allen Media Broadcasting|
|Eugene||K11GT-D||11||3 kW||281 m (922 ft)||34404|
|Florence||K35HW-D||35||2.5 kW||216 m (709 ft)||71618||West Lane Translator, Inc.|
|London Springs||K31PI-D||31||0.012 kW||−72 m (−236 ft)||61139||South Lane Television|
|Mapleton||K25NI-D||25||0.45 kW||237 m (778 ft)||190072||Allen Media Broadcasting|
|Oakridge||KEZI (DRT)||25||1.1 kW||−216.9 m (−712 ft)||34406|
|Powers||K34LK-D||34||0.554 kW||223 m (732 ft)||53295||Powers TV Translator, Inc.|
|Reedsport||K04OS-D||4||0.3 kW||132 m (433 ft)||34407||Allen Media Broadcasting|
|Roseburg||K22MB-D||22||7 kW||111 m (364 ft)||10105|
|Scottsburg||K15JG-D||15||0.5 kW||81 m (266 ft)||190152|
|Sutherlin||K11BX-D||11||0.3 kW||840 m (2,756 ft)||34403|
- Miller, Mark K. (October 1, 2019). "Byron Allen Buying 11 Stations For $290M". TVNewsCheck. NewsCheckMedia. Retrieved October 1, 2019.
- Nelson, Bob (June 2, 2009). "Call Letter Origins". 238. The Broadcast Archive. Archived from the original on February 18, 2016. Retrieved June 21, 2009.
- Eck, Kevin (July 29, 2013). "Bend's KOHD Sold to Zolo Media". Adweek. Archived from the original on January 11, 2016. Retrieved October 10, 2015.
- Colman, Price (March 5, 2014). "Prather Buying Three Oregon TVs for $30M". TVNewsCheck. Archived from the original on March 6, 2014. Retrieved March 6, 2014.
- Consummation Notice, CDBS Public Access, Federal Communications Commission, Retrieved 16 July 2014.
- Stiles, Greg (December 10, 2010). "Local ABC affiliates could be dropped from Dish Network when contract ends". Medford, OR. Archived from the original on January 11, 2016. Retrieved October 10, 2015.
- Reynolds, Michael (December 31, 2010). "Dish Restores Three Chambers Stations In Oregon". Broadcasting & Cable. Archived from the original on January 11, 2016. Retrieved October 10, 2015.
- RabbitEars TV Query for KEZI
- "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on August 29, 2013. Retrieved March 24, 2012.
- "Duck fans out of luck; TVs go dark". Mail Tribune. Medford, OR. September 8, 2008. Archived from the original on January 11, 2016. Retrieved October 10, 2015.
- "KOHD to cease all local newscasts". Randy Riffs. March 5, 2010. Archived from the original on January 11, 2016. Retrieved October 10, 2015.
- "KEZI Rolling Out News in HD". Archived from the original on May 1, 2010. Retrieved April 27, 2010.
- "Oregon Associated Press Broadcasters Association Awards 2005". Oregon Media Insiders. Archived from the original on May 8, 2006. Retrieved October 11, 2015.