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Mariners fans might need to move to Coeur d’Alene

March 12, 1995

By Jim Kershner
The Spokesman-Review

A big Seattle TV shakeup will occur Monday, and yes, it does affect viewers in Spokane, especially those who like the Mariners.

After 37 years with KIRO-TV, CBS is swapping affiliates in Seattle. KIRO-TV will become an independent station and KSTW-TV, an independent station, will become the new CBS affiliate.

Since Cox Cable in Spokane carries KSTW-TV on channel 20, this switch raises the question: What will we be seeing Monday when we tune in to KSTW on cable?

Answer: A blank blue screen.

“About 80 percent of KSTW will be blanked out,” said Alan Collins, the Cox Cable general manager.

That’s because KREM-2 has first dibs on all CBS programming carried on Cox.

So Collins said it is “very likely” that Cox will drop KSTW as soon as it can, probably by July 1.

Collins also said that Cox has no plans to pick up KIRO, which means that Spokane will lose the Seattle Mariners flagship station, which is now KIRO instead of KSTW.

KIRO will broadcast 64 Mariners games this year. Ironically, viewers in Post Falls and Coeur d’Alene will be getting those games, because KIRO has signed up KDQ-58 in Post Falls to be its Spokane-Coeur d’Alene affiliate on the Mariners network.

KDQ-58 is a low-power station carrying mostly family-oriented programming. It is carried on Cablevision in Coeur d’Alene (where it is channel 21). It can also be picked up over the air in Coeur d’Alene and Post Falls.

However, Cox doesn’t carry KDQ-58. And the signal is too weak to cover Spokane.

Still, Spokane may not be completely Mariner-free. Prime Sports Northwest, which is contracted to carry another 40 Mariners games, is offering those games to Cox Cable. Negotiations between PSN and Cox are now under way.

If the strike continues, this may be a moot point anyway. Nobody will care.

Sunday, March 12, 1995

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From → Cable Television

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