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Mrknowitall526

The 69 News/WFMZ Thread

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They have a new women Jacqueline Thomas doing the traffic reports in the mornings. She is also a meteorologist and does morning weather reports for the Accuweather Channel. In a first for WFMZ, she is doing them in front of the green screen. Jeff Bolden still does the traffic reports in the afternoon from the traffic center upstairs. I still find it a little strange that Rick Edwards didn't have any kind of farewell from WFMZ after being there almost 10 years. They always let viewers know when someone is leaving even if it is just a post on Facebook on their last day. He just disappeared and it wasn't even mentioned that he left until last month during an ask the anchors segment where it was said he was no longer at the station. Just a quick mention and they quickly moved to something else.

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They have a new women Jacqueline Thomas doing the traffic reports in the mornings. She is also a meteorologist and does morning weather reports for the Accuweather Channel. In a first for WFMZ, she is doing them in front of the green screen. Jeff Bolden still does the traffic reports in the afternoon from the traffic center upstairs. I still find it a little strange that Rick Edwards didn't have any kind of farewell from WFMZ after being there almost 10 years. They always let viewers know when someone is leaving even if it is just a post on Facebook on their last day. He just disappeared and it wasn't even mentioned that he left until last month during an ask the anchors segment where it was said he was no longer at the station. Just a quick mention and they quickly moved to something else.

 

Wow, had no idea Rick Edwards was gone! My mother mentioned that there was a new traffic reporter and they were struggling a bit on Monday.

 

Matt Broderick has been absent from the noon show lately, periodically.

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Wow, had no idea Rick Edwards was gone! My mother mentioned that there was a new traffic reporter and they were struggling a bit on Monday.

 

 

 

Monday was her first day so that might explain it. She is pretty decent though for it being her first week. She just needs to use the camera feeds more. Most of the time her reports just consists of the traffic flow maps and drive times.

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Steve Mittman is the new AM traffic reporter (if you don't know, he used to be on WAEB radio in Allentown), and Jeff Bolden seems to be back to doing PM traffic (he did traffic on WFMZ years ago ... probably at least 10). Still can't believe they said nothing about Rick Edwards leaving.

 

I also just noticed that Amanda Cox has moved to Charlotte, NC. It's a shame, I liked her. Ed Hanna posted that Jacqueline Thomas is taking over for her.

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Must say I love the professionalism Chandi Lowry brings to the weekend broadcasts. I hope WFMZ can keep her long term.

Meh, I'm not really a fan of her. I miss Karin Mallett and John Derr doing weekends together.

 

About the PPL Center studio, perhaps it's because they are doing repairs to the concrete in the arena (yes, only a year old). It cracked and did not cure properly due to rushed construction and the harsh winter of 2013-14.

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Monday - Rob, Wendy & Troy all broadcasted from the PPL Center studio all evening because of the Flyers game. Yet, the noon show is still up on the mountain - are they ever going back downtown on a regular basis??

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Monday - Rob, Wendy & Troy all broadcasted from the PPL Center studio all evening because of the Flyers game. Yet, the noon show is still up on the mountain - are they ever going back downtown on a regular basis??

I dunno- remember, there are problems with the ground beneath the PPL Center- back in the mid-90s, they had just constructed a new office building there, only for it to start collapsing into a sinkhole due to limestone underneath- I'm guessing they don't want a repeat of that. Hell, WFMZ actually produced a special of all their coverage of the event:

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Meghan Packer announced during the 4PM news today that Friday would be her last day at WFMZ.

 

Wow! I'm upset - she is one of the best reporters on 69. Obviously a bigger station feels the same way! I really will miss her.

 

About the PPL Center, they put special beams in the ground to prevent any more sink holes from happening. As I said before, they probably are not using the studio currently (although Monday night is an exception to this) because they are do some work on the concrete floors inside the building. They were put in in a hurry and during the cold winter of 2013-14 and did not cure properly. They are probably working during the day time (I'd assume).

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A couple thoughts -

 

It is great to see Matt Broderick back on air. All the great well-wishers online must make him feel good. My question though is why do some people need to use the opportunity to once again ask "Where is Rick Edwards?" Question asked. Question answered. Move on people. Embrace the change. Steve Mittman has been a part of the Lehigh Valley and the traffic scene for a long time - glad to see him move from the radio to TV.

 

I am still curious - maybe it has been answered and I missed it - but, why hasn't the noon show gone back downtown? I am sure a lot of money was spent on the ppl center studio and it now sits empty. Seems to be a waste. Even when they are doing live shots from downtown, sometimes right at center square, they still aren't in the studio. You would think it would be more cost-effective to use a remote-control operated studio than a live truck.

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I agree with the "where is Rick" stuff -- just give it a rest people! They said he is no longer with the station, move on already! I actually am liking Steve better, and his traffic reports are more detailed and hyper-local than Rick ever did. I have seen him zoom in on Route 309 & 873 in Schnecksville. An important artery in the area, but nowhere near a 22 or 78. Nice to see small areas get some love on the air!

 

Matt still must be a bit under the weather since he has not been back in the morning show yet. I really like Lauren Kusik, so it is nice to have gotten to see so much of her lately.

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Is it just me, or did you hear Stephen Arnold's new canned morning package (Waking Up My Day) in their promos?

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Is it just me, or did you hear Stephen Arnold's new canned morning package (Waking Up My Day) in their promos?

Yes, I do remember seeing a commercial about that.

 

I definitely miss Meghan Packer, but so far I'm impressed with Amanda Van Allan.

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Methinks its time for them to get a new set

 

Agree with you about the set. They have made minor adjustments to it over the last few years but it could use a substantial upgrade now. It was good work by Devlin when it was first done - it is time to get them back and bring it up-to-date.

 

WFMZ does a remarkably good job covering a large suburban area, especially considering they are an independent station in a smaller market that gets lost in the shadows of the Philadelphia stations. They really do have a solid talent pool of dedicated reporters and anchors, as well as a top-notch Accu-Weather team. The largest negative aspect in their news product is the commentary by the station owner Mr. Dean and the Rev. Barnhouse - these two are over the top and deliver a perspective that I am sure is shared by some but needs placement outside of a "fair and balanced" news product. Their brand of commentary only belongs on CBN or Fox News. These segments tarnish the professionalism that their team of journalists deliver consistently. I do appreciate the honest, forth-right delivery of their thoughts. Since Mr. Dean's Maranatha Broadcasting does own the station I also respect his right to share his opinion - but if not only to further reinforce the quality of journalistic integrity he has instilled in the culture of this news team - I would hope he would separate his opinion from the news broadcast.

 

Also, I have said it before, I will say it again - why spend so much money on being a founding sponsor of the PPL Center and building a new downtown studio to barely ever use it? Seems like a waste. The PPL Center studio could be a great temporary set while the one on top of the mountain gets a facelift - just sayin'.

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Agree with you about the set. They have made minor adjustments to it over the last few years but it could use a substantial upgrade now. It was good work by Devlin when it was first done - it is time to get them back and bring it up-to-date.

 

WFMZ does a remarkably good job covering a large suburban area, especially considering they are an independent station in a smaller market that gets lost in the shadows of the Philadelphia stations. They really do have a solid talent pool of dedicated reporters and anchors, as well as a top-notch Accu-Weather team. The largest negative aspect in their news product is the commentary by the station owner Mr. Dean and the Rev. Barnhouse - these two are over the top and deliver a perspective that I am sure is shared by some but needs placement outside of a "fair and balanced" news product. Their brand of commentary only belongs on CBN or Fox News. These segments tarnish the professionalism that their team of journalists deliver consistently. I do appreciate the honest, forth-right delivery of their thoughts. Since Mr. Dean's Maranatha Broadcasting does own the station I also respect his right to share his opinion - but if not only to further reinforce the quality of journalistic integrity he has instilled in the culture of this news team - I would hope he would separate his opinion from the news broadcast.

 

Also, I have said it before, I will say it again - why spend so much money on being a founding sponsor of the PPL Center and building a new downtown studio to barely ever use it? Seems like a waste. The PPL Center studio could be a great temporary set while the one on top of the mountain gets a facelift - just sayin'.

 

 

If i remember I think this current set debuted sometime around ... 2006? ... perhaps? Or maybe not. But I think it's been about that long since it started. Their previous set was absolutely horrible, it was tiny and looked like they were in a garage. The weather center literally had one 13" TV and black-painted trellis type stuff (that plastic you put for vines to grow up on) on the walls.

 

They've come a long way. IMO the professionalism really stepped up when they a.) went HD (which was in 2010 or 11) and b.) when they got the current graphics package (the WLEX ones). I honestly started watching a lot more since they upgraded the graphics. Before, they were just so cheesy looking all the time.

 

They cover Berks county extremely well. I am actually somewhat disappointed lately in the coverage of Lehigh County, but there really isn't a whole lot of "newsworthy" stuff that happens. Although I suppose if they really tried hard they could have stuff to report on every day.

 

Jamie Stover seems to have taken over for Meghan Packer in terms of being really busy on the evening newscasts. I really miss Meghan, but Jamie, Hilary Lane and Keleigh Gibbs have really gotten good lately IMO.

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WFMZ is a fine station. The set could use a re-fresh. But, that's not their big issue.

 

Last evening at 6pm, their second story was "are pedestrians more likely to be involved in accidents now that the sun goes down earlier." Cutting edge journalism at it's worst. They have some good reporters, who won't stay very long. The station is very lazy in it's day to day coverage.

 

The morning anchor team is polished, but tired. The evening team hasn't changed in years. And, the fresh idea for their 4pm news was to add another cooking segment. It's suburban TV at it's best. But, hardly Philadelphia worthy.

 

Trashing the owners commentary at 10pm is old news. Sometimes he makes a good point. And, it's clearly not part of the newscast. Crying about the commentary tarnishing your high journalistic standards, makes you sound like an out of control intern.

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WFMZ is a fine station. The set could use a re-fresh. But, that's not their big issue.

 

Last evening at 6pm, their second story was "are pedestrians more likely to be involved in accidents now that the sun goes down earlier." Cutting edge journalism at it's worst. They have some good reporters, who won't stay very long. The station is very lazy in it's day to day coverage.

 

The morning anchor team is polished, but tired. The evening team hasn't changed in years. And, the fresh idea for their 4pm news was to add another cooking segment. It's suburban TV at it's best. But, hardly Philadelphia worthy.

 

Trashing the owners commentary at 10pm is old news. Sometimes he makes a good point. And, it's clearly not part of the newscast. Crying about the commentary tarnishing your high journalistic standards, makes you sound like an out of control intern.

No, it's not "Philadelphia worthy" but they also don't use Philadelphia as their main focus. Many people up here in the LV do not watch the Philly news simply because it is one murder, rape, scandal, etc. After another. We don't have as much crime up here, so they don't need to report on that.

 

I'm fine with Wendy & Rob, I think they're a great team. The problem I see more often is blatant technology problems. Also last night during the 6 pm show, they cut abruptly back to Wendy and then Rob during at least two reports, mid-sentence. It was quick enough for them to say, "Sorry about that, we're having some technical problems" then went back to the story right where it left off. Things like this happen several times a week.

 

Another one comes to mind. WFMZ seemed to be one of the first to arrive on scene (from what I saw, anyway) at the runaway blimp's landing site near Williamsport last week. In the middle of a live shot of Hilary Lane interviewing a witness, the feed was lost and they cut back to the studio and did the weather. Now, I realize that is quite a distance from the station, and someone said once that they use a lot of those portable back packs that use cell coverage to send video, but they need to be reliable!

 

They really try hard during the 6 pm news, during the first 10-12 minutes. There are often reports by at least 3 or 4 different people. What bothers me is the History's Headlines at 6 pm nearly everyday, and then replayed again at 10 pm!

 

They try really hard and have 9+ hours of news everyday, but IMO not enough happens in the Lehigh Valley proper to warrant such extensive coverage. But people will keep tuning in because the only other choice for "local" news we have are the Morning Call and the Express-Times newspapers. Even the radio stations get copy from WFMZ to read during morning news segments.

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WFMZ has absolutely come a long way since its beginnings. A lot of the recent comments are spot on in my opinion. The main anchor team of Wendy & Rob have been together for longer than most - they compliment each other well despite a sometimes obvious difference in their approach, focus and background. I do love the 4pm team - although the whole vibe of that broadcast seems to be a rip-off of the original "6@4" approach from WPVI. I also believe cooking segments belong in the sunrise show - no place for it in the evening. Side note: KYW's new restaurant reviews at 11pm are ridiculous! It took me a long time to warm to Jaciel, but I feel it now. The biggest problem across all broadcasts, as mentioned by Mrknowitall526 is technical - especially lately. As for all the repeating features and stories - maybe it is true - there may simply not be enough news in the valley to demand so many hours of news broadcasts.

 

If my opinion of the commentary offered by Mr. Dean & Rev. Barnhouse offended - I apologize, after all it was only my opinion as a viewer.

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Reporter Liz Kilmer announced that today (11/25) was her last day on WFMZ and she was moving to Virginia Beach.

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Technically, the station has many problems. There 10pm weekend news was a train wreck the other week. I actually felt sorry for the anchor continuously apologizing. There is plenty of news to cover in the area, just read The Morning Call or Lehigh Valley Live. But, WFMZ seems content with feature stories. It's much easier to watch WPVI for the big stories. Their morning news is written well. WFMZ is going through the motions.

 

They do have some good on-air talent. But, as the previous poster mentioned, they usually get picked up my larger markets. As far as their talent goes:

 

Eve Tannery - The best. Good at hard news and features. The runaway leader of the team.

Jaciel Cordoba - Dry, robotic style. Will Lewis has much more personality. But, Jaciel always looks good.

Matt Broderick - The best in their weather department.

Melanie Falcon - She is very boring an anchor. Nothing special, but the team has some fire.

Jim Vaughn - Lightweight at best. He is the 2015 Anchorman.

Wendy Davis - Works well with Rob. Loved her on political coverage.

Rob Vaughn - For the size station/market, he's a professional. He's the leader at night. They should pair him with Eve.

Ed Hanna - The weather guy you either love or hate.

Troy Hein - Excellent sports story teller. Very good. Makes sports action come alive. This guy is a star.

Bo Koltnow - Not a good weekend anchor. Good reporter.

Karin Mallett - Much better on the evening news.

Chandy Lowry - Very professional.

Jamie Stover - Their best reporter. Look for her at WPVI someday. She is good.

Jaccii Farris - They should let her anchor.

Will Lewis - He could anchor in the morning.

Rosa Duarte - Nothing memorable. I saw her fill in as an anchor once, it was college TV at it's best.

Perla Lopez - Nothing to get excited about.

Roberto Vinces - Great sports reporter. He does bring the show alive. Entertaining.

Hillary Lane - She has developed nicely. Solid reporting skills. She is going to move to a bigger market.

Keleigh Gibbs - She looks like she is putting together a Vimeo demo every night. Flashy/visual... not WFMZ. Just moving on.

Amanda VanAllen - Amazing. They have a winner.

Ryan Hughes - Solid reporter

 

It's just not PVI.

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