Our local TV station – CHCA-TV faded to black at the end of August this year. Even though some folks felt that it stopped being a local station when Global made it a re-broadcaster of the E! network, it still provided some coverage of local news and events. Now there is nothing.
In our house we subscribe to a satellite TV service. Hundreds of channels but many are useless to us. There are a lot of channels that have no value to our family – but we pay for them anyway. What we find really important is what is missing – local TV. Nothing. Nada. Bupkiss! Not even a pay-for-view channel on Central Alberta news and events and happenings. Such as . . .
There is a big event in Red Deer this week called Agri-Trade, a trade show and agricultural exposition. Since agriculture is an important contributor to our economy and life here in Central Alberta this show has some impact on all of us, whether we are farmers or not. In the good old days (CKRD-TV) there would be some coverage of Agri-Trade beyond the fifteen to thirty second spots we may get from Edmonton or Calgary TV stations. Reporters such as Dianne Finstad would provide some insight to the exhibitors and folks taking part in the show. Now we have nothing. There are other events as well that are not covered and presented to the people of Central Alberta or the rest of the world for that matter. Broadcast networks and cable/satellite providers fight for our dollars but we still don’t see any of them scrambling to bring local TV to Red Deer – population 89,000 – third largest city in Alberta!
Will TV ever come back to Central Alberta or Red Deer in particular? Maybe someday when the broadcasters and carriers get over their current challenges. In the meantime there can be alternatives via the web. Video delivered through live web casts and pre-recorded archives can provide the access to local news and evens that Central Albertan’s are looking for.
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