For a long time now, WCVB has been the last and only station in Boston to not air a primetime newscast. That all changes later this month with a familiar face to Boston TV viewers to come to WCVB and anchor the new newscast.
Starting Monday February 29th, WCVB 5 will air a new hour-long newscast at 10:00pm over on its second digital subchannel, known as Me-TV Boston. The newscast will be known by an unusual title but a title that Boston has heard of before… The 10:00 O’Clock News on Me-TV Boston. Yep, every night at 10:00pm, Me-TV Boston will be carrying an hour-long 10:00pm newscast, produced by WCVB 5.
This will become the sixth primetime newscast in the Boston market and the fifth hour-long weeknight 10:00pm newscast in the market after WLVI 56 (CW) who started it all and is now produced by WHDH 7 (NBC), followed by WFXT 25 (FOX), WBZ 4 (CBS)’s 10:00pm news on WSBK 38 (MyTV) and WBIN 50 (Ind) out of New Hampshire. ONLY WMUR 9 (ABC)’s 10:00pm newscast for its second digital subchannel, Me-TV New Hampshire, will remain as a half-hour. For weekends, the fifth 10:00pm newscast in the market with the fourth hour-long’er in the market with only WBIN 50 delivering a half-hour instead of a full-hour.
This will make rare territory waters as no market in the history of the United States of America has ever had every news-producing station in one market, produce and air a LIVE 10:00pm newscast. After WCVB 5 debuts theirs, all 6 news-producing stations in the market will have a LIVE 10:00pm newscast to air on their own station or on a different station or on a subchannel. But its RARE if its 3/4ths of all news-producing stations in one market air 10:00pm newscasts (Central Florida is one of them). You’re more likely to find half, rather than 3/4ths or every station doing so.
For this new addition, WCVB 5 will be adding a familiar face to anchor the new newscast… Maria Stephanos. Maria is a New England TV news legend in Boston, having worked at WJAR 10 (NBC) in Providence before enjoying a successful, lasting and amazing 18-year run at WFXT 25 (FOX) in Boston. She left last year because of new management as the station switched ownerships from FOX to COX Media Group and she didn’t like how they handle things there, so she left. Rumors were that she would end up on the new NBC Boston that would launch on January 1st, 2017 after WHDH 7 could give up its NBC affiliation after NBC didn’t renew its affiliation agreement with WHDH 7, last month.
Maria will begin this Thursday on WCVB 5, by reporting and anchoring the station’s weeknight 7:00 and 11:00pm newscasts. She will co-anchor with WCVB 5 veteran Ed Harding with StormTeam 5 Weather from AMS/Sealed Chief Meteorologist Harvey Leonard, a New England Weather TV veteran himself and Sports with sports director Mike Lynch, another WCVB 5 veteran. Another WCVB 5 veteran, Heather Unruh, who previously anchored WCVB 5’s 7:00 and 11:00pm newscasts with Ed Harding, will shift to the 4:30pm newscast with Ed while also remaining at 6:00pm. With the push off the 7:00 and 11:00pm newscasts, Heather will expand her medical coverage as the station’s medical reporter. J.C. Monahan and Phil Lipof will remain as anchors of the station’s weeknight 5:00 and 5:30pm newscasts.
WCVB 5’s new anchor, Maria Stephanos:
“I’m thrilled to be back on local TV! WCVB is my new home, and I couldn’t be prouder to be joining this team of dedicated and talented journalists. WCVB is the quintessential news station and the news leader for a reason. Ever since I was a little girl in Groveland, I would wake up before school, wait for my TV to warm up, and watch the EyeOpener on Channel 5. ‘CVB was my station, and my dream was always to work there someday… and that dream has come true!”
WCVB 5’s President and General Manager, Bill Fine:
“Similar to many members of our team, Maria was born, raised, and educated in Massachusetts, and she has built an impressive news career right here as well. She knows the territory, the market’s leaders and newsmakers, as well as the less high-profile members of our community who make our region a remarkable place… and they all know her, too. Maria has a proven track record for excellent journalism and being able to tell a story with local insight and understanding, and she is an ideal addition to the NewsCenter 5 team.”
WCVB 5’s News Director, Andrew Vrees:
“Maria is a much-respected and well-liked journalist who knows the market like the back of her hand, and she has earned the community’s trust and admiration. Maria’s commitment and skills will help to advance NewsCenter 5’s leadership position in the market across newscasts and multi-media platforms.”
If you’re looking for Me-TV Boston when the new hour-long nightly newscast debuts on Monday February 29th, then here are the channels to look for:
- Over-the-Air Antenna: Channel 5.2
- Comcast Cable: Channels 292 or 306 (depending on the area)
- Verizon FiOS TV: Channel 461
- RCN Cable: Channel 29
- Charter Cable: Channel 184
- Metrocast: Channel 295
- BELD: Channel 75
So WCVB 5 is expanding yet again. What a time to be working for and for watching Boston’s News Leader.