The City of Coon Rapids began producing cable TV programming in May 1986. The start included training videos and live election coverage. Government programming quickly grew to include regular City Council and Planning Commission meetings, City Council Comments, Coon Rapids Profile and programming featuring city departments.
At the beginning of 1997, Coon Rapids pulled out of an eight city Cable Commission and became a single Cable TV community television entity. The City Council approved taking over community access from then Meredith Cable, now Comcast. This allowed the city to expand programming to three separate channels: Channel 15, 16, and 19. Channel 15 focuses on community programming including news, sports, concerts, and feature shows. Channel 16 focuses on government programming including City of Coon Rapids, Anoka County, and state issues. Channel 19 offers additional airing of CTN community productions and also showcases programming from other local access stations. The station also manages Cable Channel 14 which is a bulletin board that lists community announcements and promotes non-commercial events to the community.
In December 1997, we received a new mobile production truck. This vehicle acts as a mobile production facility that possesses the latest in digital technology and allows us to cablecast sporting events, concerts, parades, and other community based events.
After numerous new upgrades and several new hires, we were busting at the seams in our studio within the Coon Rapids City Center. A small studio, one edit suite, and five full-time employees made work a bit congested. With this in mind, we began the big task of building a new place for our team.
CTN moved into our new state-of-the-art facility on the campus of the Coon Rapids City Center in November of 2001. The building is over 8,000 square feet and includes:
- 2 studios with a central control room
- 5 edit suites
- Office area
- Master control
- Storage room
- Voice-over room
We now have a two stall garage to protect our mobile production trucks from the elements.
Production Trucks & Equipment
In December 1997, we purchased a new mobile production truck. This vehicle allowed us to cablecast sporting events, concerts, parades, and other community based events. In 2007, the station purchased a 2nd larger production truck. The older equipment from the smaller truck was moved into the new larger truck while the studio control room equipment was moved into the smaller truck. This allowed for the most efficient use of resources as now the control room truck can roll out to cover events when the studio is not in use! On several occasions, both trucks are covering events on the same day.
In 2011, the new larger truck was re-equipped with high definition technology for higher quality productions and additional future revenue generation capabilities.
In 2015, the entire station was re-equipped with high definition equipment in preparation for new high definition cable channels. The upgrade also allowed for the control room to be functional so the smaller HD truck could be used exclusively for remote event productions again.
In our short history, we have won more than 40 regional and national awards. CTN is committed to bringing our viewers the best in neighborhood television by continuing to upgrade our equipment and always striving to keep our programming relevant to our Coon Rapids viewers.