(channel 10, digital
43) and WIRT
(channel 13, digital
36) are the ABC
affiliates for North Central and Northeastern Minnesota, and Northwestern Wisconsin. WDIO first went on the air on January 24
. WDIO's transmitter is located in Duluth
WIRT in Hibbing is a full time satellite station of WDIO. WIRT went on the air in late summer 1967 and serves the Iron Range including Grand Rapids, Virginia, and Chisholm.
WDIO's original owner was Frank Befera, a trained engineer who owned a chain of radio stations across northeastern Minnesota. He sold channels 10 and 13 to publishers Harcourt Brace Jovanovich
, who would later sell the station to Hubbard Broadcasting Corporation
The red 10/13 logo is the oldest TV logo in Duluth, having been in use since the 1980's. The lettering used in the logo dates back to as late as the early 1970s. Since the 1980s, changes to the 10/13 logo has only been minor and cosmetic -- the most recent change was in fall 2007, when to go with ABC's redesigning of their logo from one resembling a flat disc to one with a clear glass ball effect, the station also added the ball effect flair to the 10/13 disc.
The Blizzard of April, 2008
On April 11, 2008, a blizzard swept through the Northland. This caused power outages in Duluth causing WDIO, KDLH
, and KBJR
all to lose their signal at times. WDIO supposedly went the longest before they started losing signal.
WDIO/WIRT's newscasts were branded throughout the 70's and 80's as "Action 10 News." The station changed its branding to "Eyewitness News" in the early 1990's. It shares this branding with sister station KSTP in Minneapolis/St. Paul. However, the Eyewitness News branding is the station's only resembalence to KSTP. WDIO uses its own graphics and music packages; and as a result, WDIO usually does better than its sister station in the ratings.
WDIO and KSTP do team up when breaking news happens (example: the I-35W Bridge Collapse in Minneapolis) when WDIO ties its feed into KSTP's or when a major election debate takes place, WDIO, KSTP and KAAL all join together.
WDIO news anchor Dennis Anderson has been with the station since 1970 and was the first local TV anchor to announce the sinking of the ore freighter Edmund Fitzgerald which sank in Lake Superior on November 10, 1975.
Storm Team 10/13
- Kyle Underwood- Reporter 2002-2005, Chief Meteorologist 2005-2008. Now at WOOD-TV
- Tyler Jacobson- Sports Director 2007-June 2008
- Dick Wallack- WDIO's 1st anchor
- Jack Mckenna- WDIO's 1st weather forecaster
- Lauren Sandquist- 1st sports presenter
- Collin Ventrella - Weather
- Steve LePage - Sports
- Randy Howe- Sports (Now at KVBC Las Vegas)
- Erik Osberg - Sports
- Dan Shutte - 5:00 News Anchor/Producer
- Steve Long - Good Morning Northland Anchor (now Anchor at KPTH)
- Lisa Neitzel - Good Morning Northland Weather
- Chris Nettleton - Sports (Now at KQDS)
- Gavin Moberg - Weekend Sports
- Julie Hill - Reporter
- Nick Blair - Reporter
- Ken Chapin - Weather
- Julie Moravchik - Reporter (Now News Director at KQDS)
- Deb Shold - Good Morning Northland Weather
- Margaret Clevenstine - Reporter (Now anchor/reporter at WSET)
- Collen Mahoney - Iron Range Reporter (Now reporter at KSTP)
- Julia Bobodillia - Reporter
- Eric Svoboda - Weekend Weather (Now at KDNW)- Still fills in when weather guys are off.)
- Emily Oz - Reporter
- Adam Young - Weekend Weather (Now at KAMC)
- Jeff Beamish-Weekend Weather (Now at KVOA)
- Ryan Carmel- Good Morning Northland (Now news anchor & weather anchor at KEYT-TV)
- Lance Parthe - Weather
Soon after sign-on, WDIO shot to the top of the local news ratings and has remained there more or less ever since. During the 70s and 80s, WDIO dominated competitors KDLH
(2nd) and KBJR-TV
(3rd). KBJR began to build its audience steadily throughout the 90's, and is now neck and neck with WDIO. They continue to duke it out, and have spent most of the last decade trading the top spot. However, both stations can frequently claim bragging rights for their evening newscasts (one might have the most total viewers, while the other has the highest number of 18-49 viewers, the age group most attractive to advertisers).
In the May, 2007 ratings race, WDIO took first place in all timeslots except 5:00 where they fell to NBC affiliate KBJR.
In February 2008, WDIO won with number of viewers in all timeslots, and ratings in all but 5:00.
New Year's Eve
Every New Year's Eve, WDIO often cut in to Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve
To broadcast the SMDC New Year's Eve Ball; which was a fundraiser for the hospital. In 2008, after 17 years of televising the event, WDIO announced that they would stop their annual broadcast. This decision, along with declining attendance, led to the decision to cancel the event. The Ball itself ran for 23 years and at its' peak hosted 4,000 guests.
In addition to ABC network feed, WDIO/WIRT offers the following syndicated shows.