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Channel 8, McCook (Wichita,KS)

City of License: McCook, NE

First Air Date: November 28, 1959

Operating Power: 50.43 kw Aural, 100.8 kw Visual

Original Call Letters: KOMC TV

Network Affiliation: NBC

General Manager: E. H. Kuhlman

News Director: Clarks Harman

Program Director: Bonnie Perry

Chief Engineer: Herm Heteka

Issued To: E.C. Wedel & Family

Through the Years

  • 1959

    November 28, 1959-  KOMC  channel 5 signs on with a tower height of 710 feet, licensed to McCook, NE as a satellite of Great Bend, KS KCKT-TV.  owned by Central Kansas Television.  The original CP of the station was issued to a group (Central Kansas Television Company, Inc.)owned by E. C. Wedel & Family 38%, Vryl Levan 6.97%, H. P. & Fred Thies & Families 3.8%, R.R. Rinker 4.9%, C.L. Roberts 4.4% and others on April 23, 1958.   The headquarters for the station was located at 833 N. Main, Wichita, KS.  Station signed on as an NBC affiliate.  The original CP called for the transmitter location to be 4.5 miles North of Traer, KS just east of County Road and approved on
    April 23, 1958.  That CP was then modified on September 3, 1958  to another tower site located  to 9 miles West of Oberlin, KS on Highway 36.


  • 1962

    July 1, 1962- Wichita TV Stations (Tri-Circle Network) purchased the station for $1,037,500 which also included KCKT TV and KGLD TV in Garden City, KS, which formed the “Tri-Circle Network,”  the NBC affiliate for central and western Kansas.   Station ownership:  George M. Brown, President 10.2%, Charles Brown 9.3%, Helen P. Brown 2.6%, William C. Moyer 1.5% and more.

    This was when the FCC collapsed central and western Kansas into the Wichita market, then Central Kansas Television purchased Wichita’s KARD-TV and merged it into KOMC, KCKT and KGLD.  The Tr-Circle Network changed its name to the “Kansas State Network” a few years later, with KARD serving as the flagship of the new four-station regional network.

    The Kansas Network Network management was:  Don Sbarra, General Manager and Vice-President; Bud Pursley, Program Director; Dave Wilson, News Director; and Russel V. Goyette, Chief Engineer.


  • 1980

    December 30, 1980-  Kansas State Network sells the stations to Standard Communications Inc, Group for $39.5 million.
    (George C. & Wilda Hatch Stations, Salt Lake City, UT).

  • 1982

    September 6, 1982-  KOMC changes call letter to KSNK, as part of an effort to help viewer think of the four stations as part of one large network.  Around this time, the station’s city of license was relocated across the Kansas-Nebraska border from Oberlin to McCook, though the studios remained in Oberlin, KS.

  • 1988

    August 29, 1988-  KSN stations (KSNK, including KSNC TV Great Bend, and KSNG TV Garden City) are acquired by the STL of Kansas Management  (George Lilly, President-Treasurer 100%)from Standard Communications for $45 million.

  • 1995

    June 26, 1995-  Station group are sold by STL Management to Lee Enterprises (Davenport, IA) for $48.75 million also including KSNT TV Topeka, KS and KSNW TV Wichita, KS.

  • 2000

    December 12, 2000-  Emmis Television (Jeff Smulyan, President, Indianapolis, IN) purchases most of the Lee properties, including KSN and seven other stations for $562.5 million.

    KSNK DT, Channel 12, 10.6 kw visual signs on as a digital simulcast of the station.

    (Note:  Although KSNK originated its own newscasts for many years, the station’s local operations were progressively cut back from the mid-1980’s onward.  By the start of the 21st century, local news had been reduced to inserts in KSNW’s newscasts, and separate identifications had largely been eliminated.)

  • 2006

    January 27, 2006-  Montecito Broadcast Group, a newly formed partnership between SJL and the private equity firm Blackstone ECC Committee Partners, L.P. 69.5%  (George Lilly, CEO) acquired the KSN stations from Emmis Television.

  • 2007

    July 24, 2007- Montecito announced the sale of its four stations (KSNW, KHON-TV in Honolulu, KOIN in Portland OR, and KSNT in Topeka, as well as satellites of KSNW and KHON) to New Vision Television LLC, Jason Elky, Chairman/CEO, making a total of 13 stations under New Vision.

    November 1, 2007-  Sale is finalized.


  • 2008

    November 26, 2008-  KSNK shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 8.  The station’s digital signal remained on its pre-transition VHF channel 12, using virtual channel 8.

  • 2012

    May 7, 2012- The LIN TV Corporation announced that it would acquire the New Vision Television Group including KSNW and its four satellite stations for $330.4million  and the assumption of $12million in debt; the sale–which was approved by the FCC on October 2 and was completed 1 1/2 weeks later on October 12–marked a re-entry into Kansas for LIN, which briefly owned the license of KLBY (channel 4), a satellite of Wichita ABC affiliate KAKE-TV (channel 10), in  2000, before selling them to Benedek Broadcasting shortly after the purchase was finalized.

  • 2014

    March 21, 2014-  Media General announced it would purchase LIN Media and its stations, including KSNW, in a $1.6 billion merger-giving the station its sixth owner since 2000.  Like the early acquisition  of KSNW by LIN, this deal market Media General’s re-entry to the market, as it previously owned KBSL-TV(channel 10), a satellite of KWCH-TV (channel 12) from 2000-2006.

    December 19, 2014- The merger is completed.

  • 2015

    September 28, 2015- Nexstar Broadcasting Group announced it had offered to purchase Media General and its stations, including KSNW and its satellites.

  • 2016

    January 27, 2016-  Nexstar announced that it had reached an agreement to acquire Media General.  The acquisition of KSNK and its other satellites by Nexstar reunited the stations with former satellite KSNF, whose ownership was split from the rest of the Kansas State Network in 1985.

  • 2017

    January 11, 2017-  The deal is approved by the FCC.
    January 17, 2017- Deal is completed, marking Nexstar’s first entry into the Wichita market.