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1970s

1970-1979: Gathering Support

1970

  • The future of children’s television is reshaped by the premiere of “Sesame Street.”

1971

  • KFME files for Grand Forks Educational TV station.
  • National Public Radio (NPR) is established.

1973

  • The board of directors votes to close KFME unless viewers respond with $40,000. Viewers respond to the crisis and meet the goal with a successful fund raising drive.
  • A federal grant is received to build a television station in Grand Forks.

1974

  • The corporate name is changed from North Central Educational Television Association to Prairie Public Television.
  • KGFE-TV in Grand Forks signs on.
  • Prairie Public Television is now available in Winnipeg via cable.

1975

  • With help of a federal grant, color studios are established at NDSU.
  • Regular pledge weeks are initiated by Prairie Public Television.

1976

  • Prairie Public Television premieres a weekly hour-long program called “SPIN.”
  • Prairie Public Television wins the national “Excellence In Promotion” award from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for the 4th year in a row.

1977

  • The North Dakota Legislature approves funding for a statewide public television network.

1978

  • Prairie Public Television installs a satellite receiver to interconnect with PBS network.

1979

  • KBME-TV in Bismarck signs on.