WGN is ready to deliver more local news at 10:00 p.m., starting October 5th.

WGN-TV 9 / Chicago (“WGN”)

I heard you Michael, Dontryl Alexander and David Burke (who sent in tips on this story), as well as Skyler (@mychiller, who sent me a link on Twitter), Chicagoland Radio and Media (where I heard about this story first), TVSpy, TVNewsCheck, FTVLive and the official WGN-TV website. Now, in a historic moment for WGN’s history, WGN will offer a second late-night news broadcast.

35 years after debuting The Midwest’s first-ever hour-long nightly primetime newscast, The Nine O’Clock News (John Drury and Denise Cannon) on Monday March 10th, 1980, WGN 9 will launch WGN News at 10:00 starting Monday October 5th, 2015. The new weeknight-ONLY half-hour newscast will compete against the heavyweights in Chicago: The #1-rated WLS 7 (ABC)’s ABC 7 Eyewitness News at 10:00 and #2-rated WMAQ 5 (NBC)’s NBC 5 News at 10:00, as well as the lesser known, but once-dominant WBBM 2 (CBS)’s CBS 2 News at 10:00. It will also compete against the Spanish-language newscasts in the area from WGBO 66 (Univision)’s Noticias Univision Chicago a las 10:00 and WSNS 44 (Telemundo)’s Noticiero Telemundo Chicago a las 10:00.

The newscast will be anchored by the same team that already delivers WGN News at 9:00, Mark Suppelsa (having a successful career at WGN 9 after leaving from WFLD 32 – FOX), Micah Materre (The queen of weeknight news on WGN 9, since she also does the 4:00, 5:00 and 9:00pm), WGN 9’s Chief Meteorologist and the Dean of American Local Meteorologists, Tom Freakin’ Skilling (Been at WGN 9 since 1978 and has been America’s #1, most-trusted and most-beloved Local Weatherman for 37 years now. He was part of the original news team from 1980 and is still the only original member left, still on-air from its 1980 debut.) and Sports Director Dan Roan (who has been at WGN for 31 years now, having first started in February 1984, according to WGNTV.com).

The 9:00 O’Clock winners in Chicago, always beating WFLD 32’s 9:00 p.m. newscast. This is the news team that will be on at 10:00 p.m. as well.

The format will be a little bit different at 10:00 p.m. because Tom Skilling will be the first person on at 10:00 p.m. with the full forecast (that’s because he’s on-air at 11:00 a.m., 12:00 Noon, 4:00, 5:00 and 9:00 p.m. and needs some sleep in between!) In addition, according to the story on WGNTV.com, WGN News at 10:00 will feature enterprise stories offering viewers consumer alerts, problem solving tips and investigative reports.

President and GM of WGN 9, Greg Easterly:

“Thirty-five years after launching the WGN News at Nine, news consumption has changed dramatically. We know the appetite for news continues to grow. This new, expanded half-hour will bring viewers all the news and weather you need to know before the night ends. It’s just too important of a time period for us not to be there.”

News Director of WGN 9, Jennifer Lyons:

“We are committed to delivering the successful 9pm newscast we’ve produced for decades. This expansion offers us an opportunity to bring Chicago’s Very Own news team to a whole new audience at 10pm.”

But this won’t be WGN 9’s first attempt at 10:00 p.m. news. WGN 9 once did it prior to 1980 with Nightbeat and the now-famous (now with today’s announcement), John Drury and Newsnine (Tom Skilling was a part of that broadcast too.). But they were low-rated and were canceled to make way for The Midwest’s first-ever hour-long and nightly primetime newscast at 9:00 p.m. called The Nine O’Clock News. So, this will be WGN 9’s first attempt at a 10:00 p.m. newscast in 35 years.

And, according to Chicagoland Radio and Media, WGN 9 will move Celebrity Name Game with Craig Ferguson to 10:30 p.m. to replace syndicated reruns of Friends. WGN 9 already airs an hour of CNG at 10:00 a.m.

This could be the biggest move done by WGN 9 in such a long time, since they haven’t done this in 35 years! After all, since most of Chicagoland watches WGN 9 at 9:00 p.m., they may watch their news at 10:00 p.m. as well! Watch out, WLS 7! Your next biggest competitor at 10:00 p.m. is coming soon to take you out!


17 thoughts on “WGN is ready to deliver more local news at 10:00 p.m., starting October 5th.

  1. I’m not kidding I was actually thinking about this the other day wondering if WGN would get a 10:00pm newscast. I was thinking about how WGN has expanded other newscasts like at 9:00am, 11:00am, and their 4:00pm and 5:00pm evening newsblock. When WGN first started they just had only WGN News at Nine.


  2. Under the alternate WMFL universe WGN would be owned by WMFL Corporation . The station would be called WWGN. This is what WGN news schedule would look like in a WMFL universe.
    WWGN 9 Morning News NOW Weekdays from 4:00-10:00 AM
    WWGN 9 Midday News NOW Weekdays from 11:00 AM-1:00 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 4:00 Weekdays from 4:00-5:00 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 5:00 Weekdays from 5:00-6:00 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 6:00 Weeknights from 6:00-7:00 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 9:00 Weeknights from 9:00-10:00 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 10:00 Weeknights from 10:00-11:00 PM
    WWGN 9 Morning News NOW Weekends from 6:00-10:00 AM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at Noon Weekends from 12:00-12:30 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 5:00 Weekends from 5:00-6:00 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 6:00 Weekends from 6:00-7:00 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 9:00 Weekends from 9:00-10:00 PM
    WWGN 9 News NOW at 10:00 Weekends from 10:00-11:00 PM


    • Because people love WGN-TV. When people in Chicagoland think of WGN-TV, they think of WGN News, WGN Sports, Tom Skilling and community involvement. WGN-TV is a legendary station in Chicago (hence their Superstation status from 1978-2014) and is more recognizable than WBBM 2 and WFLD 32, for sure.


      • If people love WGN I wonder why WLS 7 is number one in Chicago? I wonder if WGN News one day will be number one and outperform WLS?


      • WLS 7 is #1 in Chicago because of Eyewitness News from before 1996 and somehow, it has kept it with talent like Ron Magers, Kathy Brock, Cheryl Burton, Jerry Taft and Mark Giangreco, among others who had experience at other stations in the area. They are already recognizable in the market.

        Maybe. Maybe.


  3. Ins’t CLTV 24-hour local cable all day news channel in Chicago owned by WGN? I wonder if CLTV News is the same news content and stories from WGN News?


    • Yes. Its been owned by WGN 9 since its debut on January 1st, 1993. However, CLTV’s and WGN’s news operations were always separate until February of 2009, when Tribune finally started to merge the two together.

      And originally, no. But when the operations merge, the news content, stories and talent were started to share by both, something that continues to this day.

      Even CLTV uses WGN’s news graphics now.


  4. Did you know that Tom Skilling predicted the 2011 Chicago Blizzard two weeks before it hit Chicago? If any future weatherman wants to have any mentors they need to look at guys like Skilling, Gary England, Dick Albert guys like that. Those guys I just named off are legendary meteorologists.


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