FOX 14 & The 4-States CW History

KFJX-TV launched on October 18th, 2003. It became the 4th full-powered broadcast station in the Joplin-Pittsburg televising market. After months of technical, financial, governmental and programming planning and preparations, FOX 14 hit the airwaves early on a Saturday morning with its kid’s educational shows. Later that day, viewers were able to watch the 1st game of the 2003 World Series.

The launch of FOX 14 wouldn’t have been possible without the planning and efforts of the staff of KOAM. Under the direction and vision of KOAM President and General Manager Danny Thomas, the foundation was built. And, through a Shared Services agreement, several employees of KOAM work to support the daily operations of the second station.

The FOX Network provided affiliates with two hours of programming daily and three hours on Sunday, in addition to its sports lineup that included the NFL, NASCAR and MLB. The remaining 22 hours each day had to be filled with syndicated programs such as THAT 70’s SHOW, DHARMA & GREG, BECKER, KING OF THE HILL, MAURY and JERRY SPRINGER.

That year, FOX 14 began what would become a long-standing tradition of community service. It would grow to serve organizations throughout the viewing area. It’s efforts included the first FEED THE 4-STATES Food Drive.

In April of 2004, FOX 14 launched the first local primetime newscast in the 4-States. The 30-minute FOX 14 NEWS at 9 was anchored by Michael Hayslip. He had previously served as the Sports Director for KOAM. Chief Meteorologist Doug Heady’s weather forecasts were heard on both KOAM and FOX 14. The “earlier” late newscast found a loyal and growing audience and soon became the 2nd most-watched late news in the 4-States.

FOX 14 News at 9 soon expanded to weekends, anchored by Tawnya Bach. The popular newscast later expanded to a full-hour on weeknights and ultimately an hour on weekends. Michael Hayslip gave the newscast a fast-paced and unique personality. Long-time FOX 14 News anchor Mike Olmstead kept the newscast professional and lively for viewers. Current anchor Jordan Aubey, Doug Heady and Sports Director Jacob Lenard carry on the tradition.

Today, FOX 14 is home to some of the most popular shows on TV: THE BIG BANG THEORY, FAMILY FEUD, MODERN FAMILY, ELLEN, and ANDY GRIFFITH. And the FOX Network has expanded its Sports Programming to include College Football and Basketball, and Thursday Night Football.

On August 3rd, 2018, KFJX added a multicast channel to its digital signal. THE 4-STATES CW began broadcasting on 14.2. It’s available to viewers over the air and on local cable systems. In its first full month on the air, viewers embraced the new station. Representatives from the CW Network reported that in September, the fledgling 4-STATES CW had the highest ratings in Primetime among viewers 25-54 years old out of all the CW affiliates in the country.