KVLY-TV, virtual channel 11 (UHF digital channel 36), is an NBC-affiliated television station licensed to Fargo, North Dakota, United States, serving eastern North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota. Owned by Gray Television, it is a sister station to Horace-licensed low-powered dual CBS/CW+ affiliate KXJB-LD, channel 30 (whose main channel is simulcast in 720p high definition on KVLY's second digital subchannel to extend its reach). The two outlets share studios on 21st Avenue South in Fargo; KVLY's transmitter is located near Blanchard. In addition to its main studio in Fargo, KVLY operates a news bureau and sales office in the US Bank building in downtown Grand Forks. On cable, the station is available on channel 11 in most areas of the market, and in high definition on Midco digital channel 611 and Cable One digital channel 1011.


Fargo/Grand Forks, North Dakota
United States
CityFargo, North Dakota
BrandingKVLY TV 11 (general)
Valley News Live (newscasts)
KX4 (on DT2)
MeTV Fargo (on DT3)
SloganPeople You Know, News You Trust
ChannelsDigital: 36 (UHF)
Virtual: 11 (PSIP)
Translators34.1 K14PH-D Baudette, MN
34.1 K34MC-D Williams, MN
11.1 K21NF-D Roseau, MN
Affiliations11.1: NBC (since 1983)
11.2: CBS
11.3: MeTV
11.4: Heroes & Icons
OwnerGray Television
(Gray Television Licensee, LLC)
First air dateOctober 11, 1959 (1959-10-11)
Call letters' meaningRed River VaLleY
Former callsignsKXGO-TV (1959–1963)
KEND-TV (1963–1964)
KTHI-TV (1964–1995)
Former channel number(s)Analog:
11 (VHF, 1959–2009)
44 (UHF, until 2019)
Former affiliationsAnalog/DT1:
ABC (1959–1983)
This TV (2010–2012)
Transmitter power330 kW
Height593.9 m (1,948 ft)
Facility ID61961
Transmitter coordinates47°20′32″N 97°17′21″W
Licensing authorityFCC
Public license informationProfile

KVLY is considered a part of the NBC North Dakota state network of NBC affiliates, although it airs separate newscasts and syndicated programming from flagship and sister station KFYR-TV in Bismarck.

The station is most notable for its broadcast tower which is the fourth-tallest above-ground structure in the world at 2,063 feet (629 m). The KVLY tower was at one time the tallest structure in the world and it is currently the tallest structure in the Western Hemisphere. The KRDK-TV tower is located just six miles (9.7 km) from the KVLY tower.


The station signed on the air on October 11, 1959, as KXGO-TV (the GO for Fargo), an ABC affiliate. It was originally owned by North Dakota Broadcasting. In 1963, the call letters were changed to KEND-TV. On August 13, 1963, channel 11 moved to its current tower near Blanchard. In 1964, the call letters were changed to as KTHI-TV (for Tower-HI). Fuqua sold the station to Morgan Murphy Media (owner of KXLY-TV in Spokane, Washington) in 1968. On August 22, 1983, KTHI became an NBC affiliate, swapping affiliations with longtime NBC outlet WDAY-TV (channel 6). The current call sign, adopted on May 2, 1995, represents the station's slogan, "The Valley's Choice for Local News," as it serves the communities along the Red River of the North and its tributaries.

From 1968 until the mid-1980s, channel 11 was carried by cable systems across Manitoba and northwestern Ontario, including the Winnipeg area. When KTHI switched affiliation to NBC, it was replaced by ABC affiliate WDAZ-TV (channel 8) in Grand Forks, until Canadian cable companies were granted permission to replace most of the North Dakota stations with network affiliates from Detroit.

In September 2005, ten years after changing its call sign from KTHI, KVLY became the first major network affiliate in Fargo to broadcast in high-definition. In May 2006, KVLY made its logo bolder to reflect the change to HDTV. KVLY is the second-most-watched television station in the Red River Valley, behind WDAY/WDAZ, which are owned by Forum Communications Company.

Meyer Broadcasting of Bismarck, North Dakota, owner of KFYR-TV in Bismarck and its network of satellites in western North Dakota, bought the station in 1995. It sold its television stations to Sunrise Television in 1997. In 2002, Sunrise sold its North Dakota stations to the Wicks Group of New York City. Hoak Media bought all of Wicks' television stations, including KVLY, in January 2007.

In 2003, KVLY began operating CBS affiliate KXJB-TV under a local marketing agreement (LMA), and the two stations began sharing facilities. In April 2007, KVLY-TV and KXJB-TV began simulcasting weekend newscasts, and in November 2007, the stations began simulcasting news during weekdays rebranded as Valley News Live.[1]

In January 2010, KVLY added classic movie network This TV to subchannel 11.2. It was replaced by classic television network MeTV on January 1, 2013.

On November 20, 2013, Hoak announced the sale of most of its stations, including KVLY-TV, to Gray Television. Sister station KXJB-TV was to be sold by Parker Broadcasting to Excalibur Broadcasting and would have continued to be operated by KVLY under an LMA.[2] The sale was completed on June 13, but upon the closing of the sale, and in the wake of the new FCC rules restricting LMAs, Excalibur abandoned its plans to acquire the station.[3]

Gray would continue to provide certain services to KXJB in the interim, and later moved its CBS programming to a multicast subchannel of KVLY. If a buyer was not found for KXJB, the station would cease broadcasting in the interim. KXJB would then be spun off to minority interests, which under this arrangement would allow the station to continue operating on the conditions that it operated independently (under minority, female and/or non-profit ownership) and not make any partnerships or sharing arrangements with other broadcasters.[4]

On November 12, 2014, CBS affiliate KXJB-TV's programming began being simulcast on KVLY's second digital subchannel, displacing MeTV to the third subchannel, as KXJB was sold to Major Market Broadcasting.[5] KXJB signed off at midnight on December 1, 2014, as its programming moved to KVLY's subchannel.[6] KVLY-DT2 began simulcasting in full 1080i HD on KXJB-LD 30.1 in September 2016, along with translators K28MA-D 28.1 in Argusville (covering north and west of Fargo) and K30LR-D 30.1 in Grand Forks. CBS programming remains on KVLY-DT2 in downconverted 720p to provide full-market access to CBS in HD. KXJB-TV would return to the air as KRDK-TV in January 2015, carrying various networks on its subchannels.

On May 28, 2019, KVLY moved from UHF channel 44 to UHF channel 36.[7]

Digital television

Digital channels

The station's digital signal is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP short name Programming[8]
11.11080i16:9KVLYNBCMain KVLY-TV programming / NBC
11.2720pKX4CBSSimulcast of KXJB-LD / CBS
11.416:9H&I TVSimulcast of KXJB-LD3 / H&I

In January 2010, KVLY-TV began broadcasting the This TV network on subchannel 11.2. On January 1, 2013, This TV programming was replaced on digital channel 11.2 with its former sister network MeTV (both networks were owned at the time by Weigel Broadcasting; This TV has since been taken over by Tribune Broadcasting).[9] In addition to the main MeTV programming, KVLY used the subchannel for live events (including NDSU Bison basketball), and to repeat its morning newscast, The Valley Today, in the late morning. On November 12, 2014, KXJB's programming was moved to KVLY's second digital subchannel (now also carried as KXJB-LD's main channel), displacing MeTV to the third. Heroes & Icons was added during November 2016 to KVLY's fourth subchannel, bringing a full-market coverage simulcast of KXJB-LD's third subchannel.

Analog-to-digital conversion

KVLY-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 11, on February 16, 2009, the day prior to the original date in which full-power television stations in the United States were set to transition from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate (which was later rescheduled for June 12, 2009). The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 44.[10][11] Through the use of Program and System Information Protocol (PSIP), digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as channel 11, its former VHF analog channel.


Syndicated programming on KVLY includes Dr. Phil, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and Wheel of Fortune among others. Jeopardy!, which is usually paired with Wheel of Fortune in most markets, airs instead on CBS-affiliated sister station KXJB-LD; Fargo is one of the few markets where Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune are carried on separate stations.

Valley News Live

KVLY broadcasts 21 12 hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with four hours each weekday, one hour on Saturdays and a half-hour on Sundays). It also broadcasts an additional 13 12 hours of locally produced newscasts each week for KVLY-DT 11.2 and KXJB-LD 30.1 and 30.2, consisting of the noon and 5:30 p.m. newscasts, an hour-long extension of KVLY's morning newscast The Valley Today at 7:00 a.m. on weekdays and a half-hour nightly primetime newscast at 9:00 p.m. Combined across the four channels, KVLY produces a total of 35 hours of newscasts each week.

Valley News Live is the name of the news department shared by KVLY and KXJB. KVLY and KXJB started simulcasting weekend news in April 2007. The same news is broadcast on both channels. KXJB uses its "4" digital on-screen graphic, while KVLY uses the "11" bug during newscasts. Beginning November 5, 2007, KVLY and KXJB expanded their simulcasting to weekdays.


Due to many of KVLY's newscasts being simulcast on KXJB, KVLY claims to be the ratings leader in the Fargo/Grand Forks market when KVLY and KXJB's ratings are combined. However, until recently, KVLY and KXJB were not counted as one station due to different network and syndicated programming. CBS and KXJB's programming moved to KVLY's second subchannel in December 2014 (and later KXJB-LD), therefore KVLY can now count all of its subchannels as one station for ratings purposes. WDAY and WDAZ have historically been the market's ratings leader, and continue to claim the top-rated spot when KVLY and KXJB's ratings are separated. WDAZ has traditionally dominated ratings in the Grand Forks metro area and northern portion of the market, with their competitive advantage of being the only station airing local news from Grand Forks. Despite separate Fargo and Grand Forks newscasts on WDAY and WDAZ, respectively, the stations are counted as a single unit for ratings purposes because WDAZ is classified as a semi-satellite of WDAY, and the stations air identical programming outside of local newscasts, commercials and station identifications.

Recently, KVLY has been the ratings leader for the immediate Fargo-Moorhead metro area and the southern part of the market, however WDAZ's dominance in the Grand Forks metro area and the northern part of the market make the WDAY/WDAZ combo the ratings leader for the entire Fargo–Grand Forks market as a whole.[12]

Former on-air staff

  • Dennis Bounds – news anchor (later evening news anchor for KING 5 in Seattle; retired in 2016)
  • Robert Ivers – news anchor and talk-show host
  • Ed Schultz – sports anchor (1982; was Fargo-based syndicated radio host)


In recent years, Valley News Live has been the subject of several controversies surrounding refugee resettlement and white supremacy. In May 2016 there was a backlash to a report they aired, promoted with the tagline "Could Kindness Be Bad for Your Health", implying that the kindness of letting refugees settle in the Fargo–Moorhead area could lead to an epidemic of latent tuberculosis, a disease that isn't contagious. In his report, Bradford Arick dismissed the criticism the story was getting as people "not even from the viewing area and may or may not be affiliated with organizations pushing an agenda".[13] In an effort to refute Arick's claim and speak out against his report, local members of the community protested outside of KVLY's building, demanding an apology.[14] News Director Ike Walker refused to apologize, saying to The Forum, "I'm not interested in talking to you or The Forum anymore. You guys are the ones that kind of spun all of this up. There are problems with your story".[15] Walker was also documented tweeting in support of Donald Trump as early as 2015 in opposition to immigration, which has been cited as possibly explaining some of the reporting surrounding these issues.[16]

Following the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, it was discovered that a resident of Fargo had been part of the white supremacist march.[17] Host of the Valley News Live program "Point of View", Chris Berg, devoted his full show to interviewing the resident, referring to him by his preferred title, "pro-white activist". Area activists took issue with this terminology, especially because Valley News Live refused to put quotes around "pro-white activist".[18] When asked if they felt this gave the term unearned legitimacy, the station said it was the same policy they had for gender identity, which drew even more criticism.[19] In an effort to get the station to not give white supremacists a platform and stop equating racist beliefs with gender identity, many people notified advertisers of this conduct, resulting in several businesses cancelling their ads.[20]


KVLY-TV serves its large coverage area with three translators. All are owned by local municipalities.

Active translators

City of license Callsign Channel

Defunct translators

City of license Callsign
Devils LakeK05EL
Donnelly (Morris)K57BL
La MoureK02FR
Norris Camp (Roosevelt)K69BK
Red LakeK69BT
Starbuck (Glenwood)K68BP

Some of the defunct translators were actually in the western part of the Minneapolis–Saint Paul, Minnesota broadcast television market.

See also


  1. TV station stokes hate and fear in outrageous report on refugees – Reverb Press
  2. "Gray Buying Hoak, Prime Stations For $342.5M". TVNewsCheck. November 20, 2013. Retrieved November 20, 2013.
  3. Gray closes Hoak deal; completes refinancing., rbr.com, Retrieved June 13, 2014.
  4. Gray retains MMTC as broker for former SSA’d stations, rbr.com, Retrieved June 13, 2014.
  5. http://www.prairiebizmag.com/event/article/id/20672/
  6. http://www.valleynewslive.com/home/headlines/284288191.html
  7. "TV Rescan Required: KVLY - KXJB - MeTV Viewer Notification". valleynewslive.com. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  8. RabbitEars TV Query for KVLY
  9. Me-TV Adds WPTZ Burlington, KVLY Fargo, TVNewsCheck, November 14, 2012.
  10. Congress delays digital TV conversion, The Forum, Fargo ND, February 5, 2009
  11. "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on August 29, 2013. Retrieved March 24, 2012.
  12. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on December 30, 2014. Retrieved December 30, 2014.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  13. "10:00pm News May 16th Part 1".
  14. "Refugees, elected leaders denounce Fargo TV station for bad journalism".
  15. "Protest planned against Fargo TV station over refugee health report".
  16. "Ike Walker tweet screenshot".
  17. "Local man called out on social media after attending nationalist rally in Virginia".
  18. "POVNOW Peter Tefft B seg Interview August 14th".
  19. "Valley News Live: "Pro-White" Label "No Different" From Gender Identity".
  20. ""Point of View" Under Fire".
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