FIRST ON THE BLOG: Coming Monday September 14th, 2015, WPDE will be making history. 20 years after cancelling it, they will be bringing back a weeknight newscast, earlier than 6:00 p.m. Try to guess what timeslot it is? The answer: 5:00 p.m. Thank you to Gary Pierce for this tip (even though I already knew, thanks to TVNewsTalk.net).
That’s right. Starting Monday September 14th, 2015, WPDE 15 will be airing a weeknight hour-long 5:00 p.m. newscast, obviously called ABC 15 News at 5:00. There are very limited details on the new newscast and frankly, we don’t know who will anchor the new newscast, but I’d say that First Warning Weather with WPDE 15’s Chief Meteorologist, Ed Piotrowski, will be a part of the new broadcast.
With this new newscast, WPDE 15 will become the third and last station to air a local newscast at 5:00 p.m. in the area, after WBTW 13 (CBS) and WMBF 32 (NBC). However, WPDE 15 will only become just the second station in the area with local news at 5:30 p.m., as WMBF 32 does the same, but not WBTW 13, since they run Inside Edition at 5:30 p.m. instead.
WPDE 15 did have a local newscast at 5:00 p.m. before, until 1995 when then-owners at Diversified Communications (who own WABI 5 (CBS) in Bangor and WCJB 20 (ABC) in Gainesville) canceled the program. Since then, the news would start at 6:00 p.m. and the area’s first news wouldn’t be till 5:00 p.m. on WBTW 13 since then until 2008 when WMBF 32 was launched and has offered 4:00 and 4:30 p.m. newscasts since its launch.
And now WPDE 15 is trying to get back in the news race by launching an early-evening newscast at 5:00 p.m., once again. This is a good move for a station that has been #3 since WMBF 32 was launched in 2008. Very good for WPDE 15.