A Brief History
WIPB-TV traces its beginning to a television program created for young children more than 38 years ago: Sesame Street.
Led by Gretchen Huff and Sunny Spurgeon, a small group of Muncie decided that Muncie ought to have its own PBS station. They recruited friends, neighbors, co-workers, sorority sisters, husbands and teachers to help. Soon Eastern Indiana Community Television was incorporated as a not-for-profit organization. Its mission: a public television station for Muncie and surrounding communities. With a lot of hard work, determination and support from the community, area residents kicked off the new station on the afternoon of Oct. 31, 1971.
WIPB-TV is housed in the E.F. Ball Communication Building on the campus of Ball State University. WIPB has multiple studios and its own remote production truck, used for its own production projects and frequently rented by production companies and other television stations.
WIPB has moved into the digital age with the transmission of two digital signals on Oct. 31, 2005, using a new 800-foot tower.
Like other PBS stations, WIPB received federal and state funding. The station also received important financial support through Ball State University. However, funding from local individuals, businesses and organizations remains critical to the station’s success.
Individual support comes through memberships. Businesses and organizations provide underwriting for programs and station events, as well as important sponsorships for education and outreach services. WIPB Corporate Services is a full service production company. TeleSale, the station’s single largest fundraising event, has provided valuable revenue for the station since 1978.