Summit Public Radio & TV fosters a more informed, entertained and involved community by rebroadcasting public and commercial radio stations and digital television programming in Summit County, Colorado.
An educational and cultural resource to the community
A reflection of the interests, ideas and concerns of our listening audience
Dedication to variety and diversity in programming
Stewards of the contributions of our members
To develop and maintain our technology
To promote our identity
To expand our membership
SPRTV operates with an all volunteer, working Board without any paid staff. Our decision making approach is to gain consensus and then implement using Board members, volunteers and contractors.
Summit Public Radio and TV's roots on Baldy Mountain began during the fifties with a group of community residents who wanted to bring television to the Blue River Valley. Some enterprising Breckenridge residents knew the perfect spot to receive and transmit a signal from Denver would be a high altitude one. In an effort to discover that perfect spot, a crew of local "techies" rigged a television and antenna on a 4WD International Travel-All. Using this "advanced" technology, the crew monitored television reception as they explored the county driving old roads and climbing as high as possible. These pioneers discovered the perfect spot for reception: Baldy Mountain.
Specialized electronic equipment was the next challenge for the pioneers. The first television translator, with a temporary gas generator, was installed on Baldy Mountain around 1957. Could a reliable signal be received and transmitted from this location? A hearty and dedicated volunteer drove to Baldy Mountain daily for about a month to fill the generator with gas and fire it up so that the translator worked. Folks in Breckenridge gathered at the old county courthouse on Lincoln Street to view the one television set up there. Together they watched TV until the generator ran out of gas for the day. Evidently, the reception was good enough to warrant a permanent power supply.
In order to accomplish this, a power line would need to be strung to the top of Baldy Mountain to provide a durable power source. A volunteer group of 50 supporters was assembled from the local community. After locating some salvageable utility poles that had been in service to one of the local mining operations north of Breckenridge, they were given picks and shovels and were assigned spots to dig. Holes were dug, poles were erected, and the power line was strung, pole-to-pole, from French Gulch up to a transformer at the ridge of Baldy. The switch was flipped, the power was on, and Summit Public Radio &TV was on its way.
Today's Summit Public Radio &TV is an outgrowth of this very small and informal start-up group. In September of 1997, a small group of individuals met to discuss protecting and expanding what past groups had done to bring network TV and KBCO FM radio to Summit County. Summit Public Radio &TV was formally incorporated in June of 1998 as a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation with an all-volunteer, non-paid staff.