WJHG and WECP are making additions and moves in Panama City.

WJHG-TV 7 / Panama City (“NewsChannel 7”)
WECP-LD 18 / Panama City (“WECP-TV”)

FIRST ON THE BLOG: I don’t know how media observers around Panama City or around the nation missed or forgot about what just happened in the Media world of Panama City, Florida. But I will be happy to report it to you… FIRST. There are additions and moves to be told from the Eastern Florida Panhandle.

First off, WECP 18 signed on the air in 2012 as Panama City’s CBS station. But it never had a local newscast on the airwaves… until NOW. Starting on Monday April 6th, 2015, WECP 18 has now aired a local newscast under Local 18 News. The half-hour newscast airs weeknights at 5:30 p.m. and is the ONLY local newscast at 5:30 p.m. The newscast is anchored by Carly Hildyard with Local 18 Weather from Meteorologist Tyler Allender with LIVE reports from reporter Jamie Hale. All three also work for WJHG 7 because WECP 18 and WJHG 7 are sister stations and WECP 18’s local newscast is produced by WJHG 7. Carly is also a multimedia journalist, Tyler is also a reporter and Jamie is also a newscast producer. The new 5:30 p.m. newscast delays the CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley by a half-hour and is now shown on weeknights at 6:00 p.m. But this won’t be the only addition or move in the market and here is Ron Marasco, a news anchor for WJHG 7, to confirm the news on Twitter…

… Starting Monday April 13th, 2015, WJHG 7 will effectively move its hour-long noon newscast to 11:00 a.m. Obviously titled NewsChannel 7 Midday, the move to 11:00 a.m. will make them effectively compete against WMBB 13’s News 13 Midday for local news in that timeslot. The program will remain as an hour-long newscast. But don’t bear the bad news if you like local news at noon in Panama City and here’s why…

…. Also mentioned in that same tweet is that, already, WECP 18’s local newscast output is already expanding with another half-hour newscast coming at noon. Local 18 News at Noon will make its debut on the same day on Monday April 13th, 2015. The half-hour newscast will then become the ONLY local newscast at noon in the market, since WJHG 7 will start airing Days of our Lives in that timeslot and WMBB 13 airing ABC’s The Chew. CORRECTION: The same team that’s already a part of the 5:30 p.m. show, Carly, Tyler and Jamie, are also part of the new noon show. Paris Janos, Donna Bell and VIPIR 7 Weather with Meteorologist Ryan Michaels, who are already a part of NewsChannel 7 at Noon, will headline the new NewsChannel 7 Midday.

Those will be the ONLY two newscasts aired on WECP 18 for now, since its produced by WJHG 7 and WJHG 7 already airs the majority its local newscasts on its station in traditional local newscast timeslots. And the station has hired a new news producer who only produces content for WECP 18 (thanks Ron Marasco for the information!).

So there you go Eastern Florida Panhandle! More local news is better news. And WJHG 7 and WECP 18 are making the changes to bring you more. I like these moves.


9 thoughts on “WJHG and WECP are making additions and moves in Panama City.

  1. Another TV Market that is expanding news but does not have morning news at 4:30am or is not expanding news at 4:30am. Morning news start time at 5:00am is kinda becoming an outdated time to start morning news. Might as well buy a computer system that still uses Windows XP instead of Windows 7 or 8. Expanding newscasts in wrong timeslots.


  2. Other than Panama City TV market (DMA# 160) not having 4:30AM newscast on either WJHG 7 or WMBB 13… I would also say that nightly 9PM newscast is missing. Fox affiliate WPGX 28 is believed to have once aired an in-house produced news broadcast in the mid 1990s that was short-lived. I could see either WMBB or a Raycom Media owned station in a neighboring market coming closest to producing 9PM newscast for WPGX at a later date… and WJHG coming closest to eventually producing 9PM newscast on its DT2 sub-channel (The CW). I believe another newscast also missing would very likely be weekend morning news.


    • WJHG 7 is probably the closest to producing a 9pm newscast for either WJHG-DT 7.2 The CW or for WECP-LD 18.2 MyNetwork TV. I don’t think WPGX will produce a 9pm newscast, anytime soon. And maybe neither will WMBB 13.


  3. Good stuff. The only correction is the same WECP talent headlining the 5:30p show will also headline the noon show. And Local 18 News did hire a new producer who only produces content for WECP.


    • Wow! Ron Marasco from WJHG Channel 7.

      First off, thanks for noticing our blog! You can follow our blog if you want, just by putting your email and done. And you’ll receive the latest updates.

      And second, thanks for the errors. I will fix those corrections ASAP.


      • If you’re interested at what you see, then follow our blog. I’m a guy on a mission to deliver the latest news on local newscasts, when other media observer news sites (TVSpy, TVNewser, TVNewsCheck, etc.) are unable to report on this.

        I’m glad I’m able to provide a service like this to readers and to TV news junkies, everywhere.


  4. Why does WECp not show NFL games in both the 12::00 and 3:00 time c slots m
    This is ridiculous! !!
    Pease get with it…your program director is missing the mark.

    Frustrated Fan,

    Nick Sotraidis


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