KHQ in Spokane Builds Out Sports and Weather Channel

By Andrew Gauthier 

Broadcasting & Cable

While many stations are putting their multicast plans on hold until the economy gets better, KHQ Spokane is throwing considerable weight behind its new sports and weather digital channel. Called SWX, the channel features everything from live high school and college sports to minor league hockey to motor sports, and KHQ execs plan to shift high-profile Gonzaga University basketball games to SWX as well.

Owned by Spokane-based Cowles Co., the NBC affiliate is also putting the finishing touches on what President/General Manager Patricia McRae likens to an ESPN Zone-type project–a studio smack in the middle of a lively sports bar where patrons will offer enthusiastic commentary on the day’s games. The 1,600-square-foot studio, based in a watering hole called The Q at the Northern Quest Resort & Casino, will have its first live programming on Aug. 30. More…