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  Bolt Down the Tube!
Virginia Lawrence | Caminito Del Rocio

 

From the Del Mar Surfcomber July 25, 1984. “Del Mar Communications Center behind City Hall is set to formally open Sept. 1.” Courtesy DMVA History Committee.

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early days

BULLYING! At the end of May the Del Mar Television Foundation (DMTF) awarded two Scripps Ranch High School sophomores $250 for their winning 60-second PSA (Public Service Announcement) about bullying. This contest was organized as a part of the DMTF’s Youth Outreach Program. According to Luana Karr, Project Director, “We want to involve kids in a positive way. By creating a buy-in or connection to their community, it provides them a sense of belonging and hopefully a sense of responsibility and future involvement.” The winning PSA was broadcast throughout June and will again be aired in September. It may also be viewed at www.vimeo.com/24802602.

 

Danielle Cohen and Monica Roos of Scripps Ranch High School win Del Mar Television Foundation’s Anti-Bullying PSA Contest.  With Luana Karr, Project Director for Producers Showcase, and Mike Wasinski’s Multi-Media/Video teacher at SRHS. 
Photo courtesy DMTF.

Created by the FCC between 1969 and 1971, public-access television provides ordinary people the means to create and broadcast content through cable TV. In addition to the opportunities offered by the DMTF to young people (their intern program, Kids News, in-studio shoots and field production), the DMTF provides training classes and certification programs for anyone who would like to be involved in studio production. The students write shows and the DMTF provides full technical support for the airing of these shows on Producers’ Showcase. The most recent Showcase featured “Indie Filmmakers.” You can check the schedule at www.delmartv.com/schedule/dmtv24_schedule.pdf.

Early days: It was in the early ‘80s that Del Mar decided to build the first cable station in the area. The City Council made the decision, not without controversy, to award the original franchise to Daniels Cablevision (Denver native Bill Daniels owned a beach house in Del Mar) rather than to Time Warner, also an eager candidate. Daniels designed and paid for the TV Station. Herb Turner, a local architect, built it pro-bono, reimbursed for costs only. The building, by the way, was designed so that it could be moved to a new location at any time at the discretion of the City Council. It is not permanently attached to its foundation; it is only bolted in place.

Turner also became involved in the oversight of the TV station, and succeeded in shifting its control from the unwieldy 25-member Foundation for Del Mar Community Cable Television, to the 5-member Community Television Advisory Committee (CTAC), whose members also happened to have a better attendance record. The Foundation played no further role in the running of the station until 1999.

In 1999 Pete Glaser, who had become active in the organization, helped rewrite the bylaws for the Foundation, transforming it into an independent citizen-run 501c3 non-profit and renaming it the Del Mar Television Foundation (DMTF). Glaser became the President of DMTF and remained at the helm for 5 years.

About 2 years ago, when the financial bubble burst, the City stopped giving money to the DMTF. The TV station currently depends on funding in the form of grants, and has received generous support from the Del Mar Foundation (DMF).

Today: For anyone new to Del Mar, the TV station is located behind City Hall in the south-west corner of the parking lot where the Farmers’ Market is held on Saturday afternoons. If you want to attend City Council meetings, this is where they take place.

The writer would like to thank Pete Glaser, Meghan Anderson, Luana Karr,
Larry Brooks and Jan McMillan for their help in piecing together this story.


 
 

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