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|Henderson/Las Vegas, Nevada|
|Channels||Digital: 9 (VHF)|
|Branding||Fox 5 (general)|
Fox 5 News (newscasts)
|Slogan||Local. Las Vegas.|
(sale to Gray Television pending)
(KVVU Broadcasting Corporation)
First air date
|September 10, 1967|
Former call signs
Former channel number(s)
5 (VHF, 1967–2009)
160 kW (application)
|HAAT||384.5 m (1,261 ft)|
Public license information
KVVU-TV, virtual channel 5 (VHF digital channel 9), is a Fox-affiliated television station serving Las Vegas, Nevada, United States that is licensed to Henderson. The station is owned by the Meredith Local Media subsidiary of Des Moines, Iowa-based Meredith Corporation. KVVU-TV's studios are located at the Broadcast Center on West Sunset Road in Henderson (using the 25 TV 5 Drive street address), while its transmitter is located on Black Mountain, just southeast of the city.
KVVU signed on the air on September 10, 1967, as Nevada's first independent station, under the callsign KHBV-TV. The station originally operated from a converted Flying A gas station along Boulder Highway near Sunset Road, while its offices were housed in a modern office building on Flamingo Road. The station was on the air originally from 11 a.m. to midnight and ran a schedule of movies from the '30s through the '50s, some cartoons, westerns, and a few sitcoms. In 1971, the station assumed its KVVU-TV call letters. By 1975, the station was on the air by 7 a.m. and ran a large number of movies, cartoons, more off-network sitcoms, drama shows, and some westerns. At the time, Las Vegas was still considered a small market; at one point it was the 150th market out of a little over 200 markets. Las Vegas was the smallest market to have four commercial television stations; there were higher ranked markets that only had two stations and lacked programming from either ABC, NBC, or CBS as a result. In 1978, the station was sold to Carson Broadcasting, a company owned by talk show host and entertainer Johnny Carson, who visited the station fairly often.
Under Carson's ownership, the station often ran R-rated theatrical films uncut during the late-night and early morning hours. While the afternoon (1:00 p.m.) and evening (9:00 p.m.) movies would always be different, the same film would be run uncut in the evening and aired in its censored form in the afternoon, but not on the same day. The evening movie generally reran at 1 a.m. almost every day. Films with questionable content were sometimes prefaced by a pre-recorded warning from Carson.
The station's announcer from 1973 to 2001, Ralph Menard, would stretch the hourly station identification out to emphasize the market's larger city, intoning "Henderson..." neutrally, then leading into an elongated and smooth segue to "...and Laaassss Vegas!"; Menard died in 2003. Meredith Corporation bought the station from Carson Broadcasting in 1985. Upon Meredith taking control of the station, KVVU adopted a stylized "TV 5" logo borrowed from its new sister stations, KPHO-TV in Phoenix; WNEM-TV in Bay City, Michigan; KCTV in Kansas City, Missouri; and WTVH in Syracuse, New York. Channel 5 remained an independent station until October 9, 1986, when it became one of the charter affiliates of the newly launched Fox network (it was one of a very few handful of stations located on the VHF dial to align with the new network upon its startup). However, by the time Fox expanded its programming from late nights into evenings in April 1987, network primetime programming initially ran only two days a week (it was not until 1993 that Fox began providing programming on all seven days of the week), so KVVU continued to be essentially programmed as an independent station. In the 1980s, more talk shows were added to the schedule and movies were cut back slightly.
In 1990, the station introduced an on-air mascot named "Rusty the Fox", apparently named after both the network and the station's then-general manager Rusty Durante. The mascot, an anthropomorphic fox (in actuality, a person in a fox costume), is used for community events and at one time was used for announcements for family-oriented information, as well as the block of children's programming called Fox 5 Kids Club.
The station moved into its present studio facilities on Sunset Way in the Green Valley subdivision of Henderson in 1991. The station remained a Fox affiliate during an affiliation deal that was struck between Meredith and CBS in 1994 because that network had a long-term affiliation contract with its existing affiliate KLAS-TV (KPHO and WNEM would both change their network affiliations to CBS through the deal while KCTV was already affiliated with that network); as a result, the Las Vegas market became one of the few television markets to not be affected by the 1994 United States broadcast television realignment. It was one of only five stations (not counting satellites or semi-satellites) under Meredith ownership (the company having recently sold off WTVH) at the time of the deal, and was one of only three Meredith stations to not switch their affiliation from a different network to CBS between 1994 and 1996 (WSMV-TV in Nashville and WOFL-TV in Orlando being the others). In June 2006, the station's website was redesigned (along with those of four of Meredith's other stations). The old website was operated by the Local Media Network division of WorldNow. Internet Broadcasting operated the site until 2011, when WorldNow began a group deal with all of Meredith's stations.
Sale to Gray Television
On May 3, 2021, Gray Television announced it had purchased the Meredith Local Media division, including KVVU, for $2.7 billion. The deal is expected to be completed later in the year. If the deal is approved by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), KVVU will become a sister station to ABC affiliate KOLO-TV in Reno, which together would cover nearly all of Nevada.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP short name||Programming|
|5.1||720p||16:9||KVVU-HD||Main KVVU-TV programming / Fox|
|5.3||480i||KVVU-D2||Court TV Mystery|
KVVU-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 5, on June 12, 2009, the official date on which full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition VHF channel 9. Through the use of PSIP, digital televisions display the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 5.
In addition to KVVU's local newscasts, the station also produces a locally produced entertainment and lifestyle magazine program called MORE, which takes its name from the magazine aimed at women in their 40s of the same name that is published by Meredith Corporation (the MORE program format originated at KVVU's Portland, Oregon sister station KPTV). The program debuted on September 12, 2006, and features stories about Las Vegas fashion, local cuisine and events aimed at women between the ages of 25 and 49, MORE is broadcast as an hour-long extension of the station's weekday morning newscast at 10:00 a.m. and uses the same staff as the newscast's 7:00–10:00 a.m. block.
In 2017, the then Oakland Raiders announced in preparation for their relocation to Las Vegas that KVVU would be the official home for the team's preseason games and other pre-game programming such as the Silver and Black Show in Las Vegas, which began in the 2017 NFL season. After the Raiders completed their relocation ahead of the 2020 season, KVVU was named the team's official broadcast partner. However, KLAS serves as the Raiders' de facto "home" station, by virtue of CBS owning the rights to most games from the American Football Conference, where the Raiders play. In addition to preseason and Fox Sports Sunday afternoon and Thursday night games, KVVU also airs the Raiders' ESPN Monday Night Football and NFL Network appearances.
KVVU-TV presently broadcasts 63½ hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with 11½ hours each weekday and three hours each on Saturdays and Sundays); in regards to the number of hours devoted to news programming, it is the highest local newscast output among Las Vegas' broadcast television stations; in addition, the station's sports department produces Fox 5 Sports Plus+, a 15-minute sports highlight program that airs on Sunday evenings after the 10:00 p.m. newscast.
Prior to affiliating with Fox, KVVU's news programming consisted solely of daily news updates featured during the station's syndicated programming between the late 1970s and 1986. Meredith Corporation eventually started a news department for KVVU-TV; it began producing a 10:00 p.m. newscast in June 1998, the Las Vegas market's first local newscast in primetime, the program originated as a weeknight-only half-hour newscast; the broadcast expanded to Saturday and Sunday evenings in June 2002, followed by the expansion of the newscast to an hour-long long program in 2003. For the first couple of years, the newscast was solo-anchored by Angelica Urquijo; the station originally did not have a weather anchor or full-time sports anchor; the sports segments were pre-recorded with voice-over work done by boxing analyst Al Bernstein.
In July 1999, the station added a morning newscast that originally aired from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m. The following year, the program was expanded by 90 minutes with the addition of a news block from 5:30 to 7:00 a.m. News programming on channel 5 would not expand again until September 10, 2007, with the debut of an hour-long block of newscasts during the 5 p.m. hour; with the expansion, KVVU-TV became the only local station in Las Vegas carrying a newscast in the 5:30 p.m. timeslot. One year later on August 4, 2008, KVVU debuted a half–hour weeknight–only newscast at 11:00 p.m. On March 7, 2011, the weekday morning newscast (which consisted of the pre–7:00 a.m. Fox 5 News This Morning and the 7:00–9:00 a.m. Fox 5 News: Live in Las Vegas until 2013, when the program uniformally rebranded under the former title) expanded to 4½ hours, with its start time moved to 4:30 a.m. On July 9, 2012, KVVU debuted a half-hour 6:00 p.m. newscast.
On April 6, 2020, KVVU added a half-hour 1 p.m. newscast on weekdays, making it one of a few stations airing a 1 p.m. newscast alongside Los Angeles' CW affiliate KTLA and San Diego's Fox affiliate KSWB-TV. On that same day, KVVU expanded its weeknight 11 p.m. newscast to an hour; this made KVVU among the very few stations to extend its late newscast to midnight, and one of six Fox affiliates (Kansas City's WDAF-TV, Washington, D.C.'s WTTG, Atlanta's WAGA-TV, Tampa's WTVT and Phoenix's KSAZ-TV being the others) to air a two-hour late local news block.
Notable former on-air staff
- Al Bernstein – sports anchor (1998–2002; now a boxing analyst for Showtime)
- Cher Calvin – weekday morning anchor (now weekday anchor and reporter at KTLA in Los Angeles)
KVVU is rebroadcast on the following low-power stations:
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- "Fox Helps You". Welcome Home Magazine of Las Vegas. Archived from the original on August 12, 2007. Retrieved May 16, 2007.
- Meredith acquires Carson Broadcasting[dead link], PR Newswire (via HighBeam Research), December 3, 1984.
- O'Brien dismisses another Meredith GM, Broadcasting & Cable, February 19, 2002.
- RabbitEars TV Query for KVVU
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-02-09. Retrieved 2009-02-06.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "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.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2017-06-04. Retrieved 2017-06-01.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- Lafayette, Jon (May 14, 2020). "KVVU-TV Named Broadcast Home for Las Vegas Raiders". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved May 20, 2020.