The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, February 21, 1980, Image 19

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Happy Birthday Channel 15!
. • *
Texas A&M University has renamed one of
its streets to “Sesame Street,” to com
memorate the 10th birthday of PBS station
KAMU Channel 15, which was celebrated
on Feb. 15. The name Sesame Street was
chosen to honor the children’s show,
which is also celebrating its 10th birthday
this year. Photo by Janet Golub
The Hearne High School Eagle Band were events of the celebration.
part of a parade, one of the scheduled Photo by Janet Golub
One of the celebration’s young participants enjoys a cho
colate chip cookie while looking at his Sesame Street
CartOOn bOOk. Photo b Y Beck y Matthews
by Becky Matthews
Battalion Reporter
If someone walks up to you on
campus tomorrow and musically
asks, “Can you tell me how to get,
how to get to Sesame Street,” don’t
punch him or walk off muttering ab
out (big) bird brains. As of Feb. 15,
there really is a Sesame Street at
Texas A&M University.
The street, which leads to the
parking lot next to the Joe Hiram
Moore Communications Center,
was officially marked with a special
Sesame Street sign from the Chil
dren’s Television Workshop at the
Friday celebration of Channel 15’s
10th birthday.
Rod Zent, The KAMU station
manager, explained on the hour-
long live broadcast of the celebra
tion that Sesame Street was
chosen to be the theme because
Sesame Street is also celebrating
its 10th birthday this year.
About 12:30 p.m., a crowd began
gathering at the University Center.
Members of the Hearne High
School band as well as approxi
mately 300 pre-school and elemen
tary school kids gathered in prepa
ration for a parade down on Hous
ton Street. The kids brought home
made Sesame Street nametags,
banners and posters and they were
given helium-filled balloons to carry
in the parade.
The children from one school
turned themselves into miniature
TV sets by wearing brown grocery
sacks with little screens cut out of
the front.
At 1 p.m., the station began to
broadcast coverage of the cere
mony on the front porch of the com
munications center as the parade
started down at the other end of the
street. The band led off the parade
and the little kids scampered behind
it like the kids who followed the Pied
The mayors of both Bryan and
College Station as well as repre
sentatives of both the A&M Consoli
dated School District and the Bryan
Independent School District official
ly declared Feb. 15, 1980, to be
KAMU Public Television Day.
Dr. Jarvis Miller, president of
Texas A&M, congratulated the sta
tion for its 10 years of public service
and said that he was very proud of
the community’s support of KAMU
in the past two years.
After the parade, the children
were brought into the studio of the
station where they were inter
viewed about Sesame Street and
the characters in Sesame Street.
The Cookie Monster was very
popular, but Big Bird barely edged
out ahead to be the most popular
Sesame Stieet character. After the
interviews, the children were taken
outside the station where they were
given Sesame Street magazines
and punch and cookies.
According to Rodger Lewis, the
program director of the station, the
most important aspect of the birth
day celebration is that KAMU began
broadcasting on weekday mornings
beginning on that day.
Before Feb. 15, the station began
its broadcast day at 2:30 p.m. Now it
begins broadcasting at 7:45 a.m.
The station is currently planning
to broadcast material carried direct
ly off the Public Broadcasting Sys
tem network without any locally pro
duced programs. It hopes to ex
pand to local programs, education
programs and classic movies if the
support and demand for the prog
rams justifies it.
The change to a full day of broad-
casting will help people in the
Bryan-College Station community
understand when KAMU is broad
Previously, when KAMU was not
on the air the cable companies
would insert programming from
another station. This caused people
to be confused as to when KAMU
was broadcasting and when broad
casts came from another station.
When KAMU first began broad
casting, it had 76 transmitter fai
lures in the first 13 weeks. They
were working in a building which
had been condemned after World
War I and using equipment which
was over 22-years-old.
In 1970, it became a PBS station
and in 1972 it moved from the old
building to the Joe Hiram Moore
Communications Center where
they had all new equipment.
a n rp a-i
0 5.