About Pix 11The station initially broadcast on June 15, 1948, as the fifth television station in New York City and the market's second independent station. It was also the second of three stations to begin in the New York area in 1948, following Newark, New Jersey-based independent WATV (channel 13) and two months before WJZ-TV (channel 7). WPIX's call letters stem from the tagline of the newspaper that created the station, the Tribune-owned New York Daily News, whose slogan was "New York's Picture Newspaper". WPIX operated a backup studio (dubbed "Studio Five") at 110 Central Park South in its early years, when programs shot in front of a studio audience were created.
WPIX Plaza is located on the southwest intersection of 2nd Avenue and 42nd Street.
Until it was purchased outright by Tribune in 1991, WPIX operated independently from the company's other television and radio outlets via the News-owned license holder, WPIX, Incorporated, which in 1963 purchased New York radio station, WBFM (101.9 FM) and quickly changed its call letters to WPIX-FM. In 1991, British billionaire Robert Maxwell purchased the Daily News. WPIX and WQCD were kept by Tribune, although the radio station was sold to Emmis Communications in 1997. WPIX initially aired content that was common among independents: children's programs, movies, syndicated reruns of network shows, public affairs programming, religious programming, and sports - notably, baseball games from the New York Yankees, which WPIX carried from 1951 until 1998.
Channel 11 was also the home of notable characters for generations of New York youngsters. Joe Bolton, an initial WPIX worker and weather forecaster, donned a police outfit and became "Officer Joe" in 1955, hosting various shows based on Little Rascals, Three Stooges, and later Popeye cartoons. In the early 1960s, another early WPIX star, Jack McCarthy, presented Popeye and Dick Tracy cartoons as "Captain Jack," but he was also the longstanding host of station 11's St. Patrick's Day parade coverage from 1949 until 1992. From 1959 through 1964, WPIX featured a local version of Bozo the Clown starring Bill Britten. During the mid-1960s, comedy comedians Chuck McCann and Allen Swift presented programs on WPIX before moving on to other entertainment ventures in Hollywood. Joya Sherrill, a jazz vocalist, hosted a weekday children's show called Time for Joya (later renamed Joya's Fun School). The Magic Garden series was created by Channel 11 and aired from 1972 to 1984. From the late 1970s through the spring of 1982, the station ran "TV PIXX," a television video game show that aired between commercial breaks of afternoon shows. Kids would ring in to the station hoping to win prizes by controlling a video game over the phone.