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Wgal dt2.png
Lancaster / York / Harrisburg /
Lebanon, Pennsylvania
City of license Lancaster
Branding WGAL 8 (general)
News 8 (newscasts)
This TV Lancaster
(on DT2)
Slogan Coverage You
Can Count On
Channel Digital: 8 (VHF)
Subchannels 8.1 NBC
8.2 This TV
Affiliations NBC
Owner Hearst Television
(WGAL Hearst Television, Inc.)
First air date March 18, 1949
Callsign meaning Greater Area of Lancaster
Former callsigns WGAL-TV (1949-1992)
Former channels Analog:
4 (VHF, 1949-1952)
8 (VHF, 1952-2009)
58 (1999-2009) (UHF)
Former affiliations CBS (1949-1963)
ABC (1949-1963)
DuMont (1949-1956)
all secondary
NBC Weather Plus
(on DT2) [1]
Effective power 8.1 kW
Height 419 m
Facility ID 53930
Antenna coordinates 40°2′4″N 76°37′8″W / 40.03444°N 76.61889°W / 40.03444; -76.61889

WGAL is the NBC-affiliated television station for South Central Pennsylvania that is licensed to Lancaster. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on VHF channel 8 from a transmitter near U.S. 30 north of Hallam. Owned by Hearst Television, the station has studios on Columbia Avenue (a.k.a. PA 462) in Lancaster. Syndicated programming on WGAL includes: Access Hollywood, Entertainment Tonight, Oprah, and Dr. Phil.


Digital programming

The station's signal is multiplexed. On WGAL-DT2, Comcast digital channel 248, and Verizon FiOS digital channel 460 is This TV.

Channel Programming
8.1 main WGAL programming / NBC HD
8.2 WGAL-DT2 "This TV Lancaster"

Due to troubles with receiving the main channel 8 signal in many areas, WGAL has applied for six low-powered "fill-in" translators. None have currently been granted construction permits. If and when any stations sign on, they would be listed with the same callsign and facility ID as the main station.[2][3]

Channel City of License Service Area
15 Lancaster Lancaster and immediate area
27 Red Lion York
27 Carlisle Carlisle, Mechanicsburg
31 Gettysburg Gettysburg, Chambersburg, Thurmont
43 Harrisburg Harrisburg and immediate metro area
49 Ephrata Lancaster, Reading, Lebanon, Hershey

It is not known whether these transmitters will replace the main signal in York if they are built.


WGAL-TV began operations on March 18, 1949 on channel 4 as the fourth television station in Pennsylvania and the first outside Philadelphia beating WDTV (now KDKA-TV) in Pittsburgh which began operations in November of that year. It was owned by the Steinman family owners of WGAL radio (1490 AM) and Lancaster's two major newspapers, the Intelligencer Journal and the Lancaster New Era. At the time, Lancaster was the smallest city in the country with a television station.[citation needed] The station's first formal program was shown on March 22 to a group of RCA executives, television dealers, and radio station personnel at the Stevens House Hotel in downtown Lancaster. In 1952, WGAL increased its power from 1,000 to 7,200 watts. Under this new grant, the station was required by the FCC to move to channel 8 to prevent interference with WRC-TV in Washington D.C. That change took place on December 31, 1952.

On January 1, 1954, WGAL presented its first color television broadcast of the Tournament of Roses Parade. It has always been an NBC affiliate but also carried some programs from CBS, DuMont, and ABC until 1963 when Nielsen made the Lancaster and Harrisburg / York areas a single market. The Steinmans also launched WDEL-TV in Wilmington, Delaware around the same time as WGAL's launch but sold that station in 1955. Over the years, the family purchased three more television stations (KOAT in Albuquerque, New Mexico and KVOA in Tucson, Arizona both of which they sold to Pulitzer Publishing in 1969 and WTEV-TV in New Bedford, Massachusetts) as well as several radio stations and newspapers. The Steinmans sold both of their remaining television stations to Pulitzer in late-1978 reuniting them with KOAT (that company spun off KVOA in 1972).

Under Pulitzer's ownership in 1985, WGAL became the first television station in Pennsylvania to broadcast in stereo beating much larger stations in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. It dropped the -TV suffix in 1992. Pulitzer sold its entire television division, including WGAL and KOAT, to what was then Hearst-Argyle Television in 1999. The sale closed on March 18, this station's 50th anniversary. In 2000, WGAL adopted a Hearst-styled logo somewhat similar to sister stations WBAL-TV in Baltimore, Maryland and WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh. After the analog television shutdown on June 12, 2009, WGAL moved back to channel 8. [4][5] It airs live the Pennsylvania Lottery televised nighttime drawings seven nights a week and the live Powerball on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The station is also a community service leader in the market airing the Salvation Army Coats For Kids drive and telethon, the Children's Miracle Network telethon, and the Jefferson Awards. Anchors and other on-air personalities are active in the community as well. WGAL's signal is seen on cable systems far past the market borders. This includes in Fulton County (west), Chester and Berks Counties (east), Northumberland County (north), and Cecil and Harford Counties in Maryland (south). [6]


WGAL's current ID slide.

As the only VHF station in the area, it has been the market leader for many years. This may also have to do with its past owners being local major newspapers as is common for many first ranked stations in the United States. WGAL airs over 21 hours of local news broadcasts every week. With its dominant presence in the market, the station has the highest share in the country (of the top 50 markets) in terms of audience share for the weekday 6 A.M. and 6 P.M. news and also leads all other stations in the market in terms of share on every other broadcast. [7] On September 30, 1995, weekend morning editions of News 8 Today premiered. In addition to their main studios, WGAL operates bureaus in Harrisburg (on Market Street) and York (on South George Street a.k.a. BL I-83 / Susquehanna Trail). The station operates the area's only live weather radar at its transmitter site known as "Super Doppler 8".


Current personalities


  • Lori Burkholder - weekday mornings
  • Carrie Fairchild - Sunday mornings at 9AM (also reporter)
  • Jere Gish - weekday mornings
  • Meredith Jorgensen - Saturday mornings at 9AM (also reporter)
  • Kim Lemon - weeknights at 5 and 6PM
  • Ron Martin - weeknights at 5, 6 and 11PM
  • Brian Roche - weeknights at 5:30PM
  • Anne Shannon - weekend evenings at 6PM and 11PM
  • Susan Shapiro - weekdays at noon
  • Janelle Stelson - weeknights at 5:30 and 11PM

News 8 Storm Team Meteorologists

  • Joe Calhoun (AMS Seal of Approval) - Chief Meteorologist; weekday mornings
  • Doug Allen - weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6 and 11PM
  • Matt Ritter (AMS Seal of Approval) - weekdays at noon
  • Dr. John Scala - weekends at 6 and 11PM
  • Matt Binder - fill-in meteorologist

Various meteorologists present weather on a rotating basis on weekend mornings. WGAL is one of the few television stations in the United States where the chief meteorologist does not present weather during the weekday evening newscasts.


  • Mike Hostetler - weeknights at 5:30, 6 and 11PM
  • Mike Straub - weekend evenings at 6PM and 11PM
  • Pat Principe - Sports Director/reporter and fill-in anchor


  • Matt Barcaro - general assignment reporter
  • Barbara Barr - Lebanon County reporter
  • Carter Evans - weekday morning New York Stock Exchange correspondent
  • Porcha Johnson - general assignment reporter
  • Anne Shannon - "Learning Matters" reporter
  • Jim Sinkovitz - Dauphin County reporter
  • Katelyn Smith - weekday morning reporter
  • Ed Weinstock - Adams and York County reporter

Hearst Washington Bureau

  • Sally Kidd - Washington D.C. correspondent
  • Laurie Kinney - Washington D.C. correspondent
  • Traci Mitchell - weekday morning Washington D.C. correspondent

8 on Your Side Reporters

  • Matt Belanger - investigative/government/general assignment reporter
  • Brian Roche - consumer/investigative reporter
  • Susan Shapiro - investigative reporter

News/Station Presentation

Newscast Titles

  • TV-8 Total News (1970s)
  • NewsCenter 8 (1970s-1990)
  • News 8 (1990-present)

Station Slogans

  • The One to Count On (1982-1987; used during period station used Frank Gari's "So Good to Turn To")
  • WGAL, The Place To Be! (1990-1991; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • Coverage You Can Count On (1990-present)
Television.svg This film, television or video-related list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it with reliably sourced additions.


  1. ^
  2. ^ [ Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
  3. ^ FCC TV Query: WGAL
  4. ^ FCC DTV status report for WGAL
  5. ^
  6. ^ Comcast (Fulton/Chester/Berks), Service Electric (Northumberland), Armstrong (Cecil), Clearview Cable (Harford)
  7. ^ Nielsen Media Research November 2008 Adults 25-54 Audience share

External links

Simple English

WGAL NBC television channel in the Lancaster/Harrisburg/York (Susquehanna Valley) area. It can be viewed on channel 8. Its studios are located in Lancaster, PA.


WGAL-TV first appeared on television on March 18, 1949 on channel 4 as the fourth television station in Pennsylvania. It was owned by the Steinman family, owners of WGAL radio (1490 AM) and Lancaster's two major newspapers. At the time, Lancaster was the smallest city in the country with its own television station.[needs proof] On 31 December 1952 WGAL moved to its current location on channel 8. On January 1, 1954 WGAL showed its first color television program, the Tournament of Roses Parade. WGAL has always been an NBC television station, but also carried some programs from CBS, DuMont, and ABC until 1963. The Steinmans sold WGAL-TV to Pulitzer in late 1978. Pulitzer sold WGAL-TV to Hearst-Argyle Television in 1999. The change took place on March 18, the station's 50th anniversary.

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