Television station WVVH-TV honored for “Serving New York” and extraordinary efforts during Hurricane Sandy
Congratulations to WVVH-TV for receiving “Serving New York” awards for their public service efforts during the year. We especially want to thank you for broadcasting on the air during Hurricane Sandy while the power and other communications services were out.
WVVH-TV "Serving New York" Award: With over 40 Public Service campaigns include, the Clamshell Foundation, ASPCA Horse Rescue Efforts, Riders with Disabilities, American Heart Association’s Heart of the Hamptons Ball, Meals on Wheels, wounded Warriors Soldiers Ride Project, and Kettle Comfort Sponsorship, WVVH-TV has distinguished itself in service to the community throughout the year.
WVVH-TV Special Certificates awarded for Hurricane Sandy Coverage to: Francine Wolf, Matthew Hindra, Gregory F. Schimizzi, Ernie Schimizzi
VVH-TV Webtreaming since 2004
20 Years on the Small Screen
The last family-owned and run TV station on Long Island
The Schimizzi brothers — Ernie, sitting, with Greg standing behind him — are celebrating 20 years of television in East Hampton.Morgan McGivern
“In all the years we’ve been in the business, our phone number hasn’t changed,” said Ernie Schimizzi, who, with his brother, Greg, has had a stronghold on the local television market for almost two decades. “We’re the last family-owned and run station on Long Island,” he added, referring to WVVH-TV, which can be seen as Hamptons TV on Cablevision Channel 78, on Fios at Channel 14, on YouTube, as a computer Web stream, and even on a smartphone through a recently available app, with an estimated 5 million viewers. “We’re now seen in millions of homes from Montauk to Manhattan,” said Ernie Schimizzi. The Schimizzi brothers grew up in Bensonhurst and were obsessed with the latest innovation — television — from a very early age. “ ‘The Honeymooners’ was supposed to be in Bensonhurst,” Greg Schimizzi recalled. “We grew up convinced that Jackie Gleason lived in one of the buildings on our block.” But it was a trip into the city with their father in 1957 that really sealed their fate. “It was 1957 on a Sunday,” Greg Schimizzi said. “We ended up at NBC Studios.” “A Sunday,” said his brother. “And the whole place was open.” After being allowed to wander around the vast production sound stages, they watched the filming of some of the shows, including the “Today” show with Dave Garroway, a legend from the golden age of television. “It was magic,” Ernie Schimizzi said. The photo of the two, standing in front of the studios at 30 Rockefeller Center, still hangs in their office in Wainscott. Their father died only five years later (“from his one and only heart attack,” said Ernie Schimizzi) at the age of 46, and it was up to Mrs. Schimizzi, a dressmaker, to raise the boys on her own. She worked with top designers of the time, like Oleg Cassini. “Jackie Kennedy wore a black cape with a red lining to the inauguration,” Greg Schimizzi said. “Our mom sewed that.” The Schimizzis made the money that they used to buy the station license and start their parent company, Video Voice, on a patent they obtained from inventing an anti-theft device for automobile trunks. The patent, which they had shopped at all the big auto companies in Detroit, was initially refused. However, when a friend bought a new Chrysler, it came with a version of the Schimizzis’ invention built in. In the case of patent infringement, the brothers came out victorious — and it led to what they termed a deep understanding of the integrity necessary in art. “You have to protect the artist,” Ernie Schimizzi said. “Our art happens to be television, and we’re mindful and respectful of the people we work with.” “We don’t know any other way to be,” Greg Schimizzi added. The brothers have been growing the Hamptons TV brand over the last decade, with new and expanded studios on Industrial Road, next to LTV. But the primary goal still is to stay local. “We don’t see the Hamptons as just a resort community, or even primarily a resort community,” Ernie Schimizzi said. “It’s about family, and small businesses, and history.” The brothers still like to be hands-on with their station. They invented a new form of live streaming for the Web which does not require any downloading, and were both recently certified as broadcast engineers. “If we owned an airplane, we would learn how to fly it,” Greg Schimizzi said with a grin. Some of the programs, like the morning show “The Daily Buzz,” are not generated locally, but many of them — “American Dreams,” “The Real Hamptons,” and coverage of the Hampton Classic Horse Show and Hamptons International Film Festival — are. “We now have the ability to do live TV,” Ernie Schimizzi said with no small amount of excitement. His brother was also enthused at the prospect. A link to the past or a link to the future? Only the Schimizzi brothers know for sure.
http://libn.com Long Island BusinessNews
CBS’ takeover of WLNY a mixed blessing
by Claude Solnik
Published: July 6th, 2012
WVVH President Ernie Schimizzi When CBS late last year announced it was acquiring WLNY TV, one of Long Island’s last independent television stations, for $55 million, many viewed the deal as a first step in expanding local news coverage. A network’s vast resources could help the Melville-based station serve the region better. While it’s too soon to judge whether the investment paid off (the newscasts will launch this month), one thing is becoming clear: The homegrown station will have its feet firmly planted in New York City. While the station known as TV 55 aired daily half-hour newscasts out of its Melville headquarters, WLNY’s newscasts, which will be broadcast from CBS’ Manhattan studios, will air at 9 p.m. with CBS 2’s anchors pulling double duty. The network is launching a morning show called “Live from the Couch,” also from Manhattan.Even the station’s social media presence plays up the fact the call letters may stand for “We Love New York,” but the station loves “New Jersey and Connecticut too.” CBS has beefed up its Long Island coverage, hiring Carolyn Gusoff from Fox 5 to join Jennifer McLogan. Richard Rose, formerly WLNY-TV’s news director, remains in that role. “WLNY will continue to cover news events across the tri-state area,” said Mike Nelson, a CBS spokesman. “We look forward to providing our viewers with the most thorough and insightful coverage of the news affecting Long Island residents.” On the most basic level, the acquisition led to dozens of layoffs, as CBS consolidated operations with its Manhattan base, running two stations in the same market with some overlapping staff. “We’ve gotten a number of calls from people who used to work at TV 55,” said Ernie Schimizzi, president of Wainscott-based independent TV station WVVH. “They let go of a lot of people.” But some said layoffs are customary with any change in ownership. “Any time you have a media company take over another media company, you see layoffs,” said Jaci Clement, executive director of the Fair Media Council. “It doesn’t mean that going forward, they might not hire. If they got rid of people to replace them with others, that’s typical. It’s too early to tell whether it means fewer jobs.” Clement said CBS is upgrading the Melville studio, after hiring an additional Long Island reporter. She expects their Long Island stories will reach a wider audience through other CBS stations as well as WLNY. “Now [WLNY is] getting more exposure and they’ll be doing more news,” she said. CBS could make the station far more profitable than it was as an independent, by turning it into a competitor with other network newscasts and carving out a 9 p.m. niche. And networks typically do better than independent owners when they negotiate retransmission agreements with cable companies, required to carry broadcast stations. “They could be more aggressive than TV 55 was,” Schimizzi said. “They were a single channel. They didn’t have the strength of CBS behind it.” The transaction is the latest moment in changing landscape in which Long Island broadcast stations are being acquired by New York City-based operations. Manhattan-based WNET 13 several years ago acquired WLIW 21, a local Public Broadcasting Service outlet, ending Long Island ownership. WNET invested to upgrade the station’s equipment to transition to digital. It has been making efforts to boost Long Island coverage, recently broadcasting a special titled “Long Island Business Report” with Jim Paymar, being considered as a regular program. Meanwhile, WVVH is celebrating its 20th anniversary as an independent. “We’re family-owned. We’re based on Long Island,” Schimizzi said. “If you walk down Main Street in East Hampton, the mom-and-pop stores have been replaced by the J. Crews, the national brands.” WVVH, also known as Hamptons TV, covers events such as horse shows, movie festivals, fundraisers and programs at Guild Hall. It doesn’t present a local newscast, although it inserts local coverage into Independent Network News broadcasts. WVVH’s biggest obstacle, however, has been resistance by cable companies to carry the station across a wide area. Cablevision only carries WVVH on the East End. Verizon FiOS, meanwhile, rolled out WVVH to viewers across Long Island, New York City and Westchester County. “It’s allowing us to attract and build. Now we have this increased carriage on FiOS,” Schimizzi said. “We’ve been prevented from expanding by Cablevision. Hopefully that will change. We’ve been having conversations with Cablevision. It’s looking better than it has for many years.”
Long Island Business News
Hamptons TV goes primetime
by Gregory Zeller
Published: August 13th, 2010
Remember those kids from the neighborhood, the “Little Rascal” types always rehearsing skits and hanging linens for stage curtains and sticking tutus on puppies? The stars-in-their-eyes dreamers - Alfalfa meets Bob Fosse - so eager to recreate Broadway in their backyard?
They grew up to be Greg and Ernie Schimizzi.
The Schimizzi story is the perfect parable for television’s evolution, a movie-of-the-week abridgement of the medium’s history. Like TV itself, Wainscott-based WVVH has grown from a local curiosity to a global presence. It’s even become a pawn in the turf war between Verizon’s FiOS Network and the masterminds at Cablevision (stay tuned).
Everything from a violated car-security patent to the Internet to old-school “Our Gang” chutzpah has played a part. And behind it all: two wordsmiths, shutterbugs and slightly geeky technophiles who still get jazzed about putting on a show.
In 1994, the FCC offered the last license for a Long Island broadcast station - Southampton’s UHF 23. There was no actual station, Greg Schimizzi recalled, just a permit to build one, but the brothers swooped in. Nearly two decades in the film industry had primed them for the challenge, and WVVH was the ideal extension of the brothers’ personal and professional relationship.
Their father, an Italian immigrant who worked Pennsylvania’s coal mines and Michigan’s auto lines before bringing his brood to Brooklyn, died young, leaving their mother, a dressmaker from Calabria, to raise them alone. “Our mother was 45 years old, faced with a mortgage and two sons,” Ernie said. “That put positive pressure on us to try to succeed.”
For the spunky siblings, products of Dad’s mechanical mind and Mom’s eye for detail, success required innovation. In 1971, noticing a trend in their Bensonhurst stomping grounds (crooks burgling car trunks by jimmying locks with screwdrivers), the then 20-something brothers invented a lock-shielding antitheft device. In 1972, deeply in love with American history, they coauthored and published “September 11, 1776: America’s First Attempt at Peace,” chronicling an actual meeting at Staten Island’s Billop Manor House between congressional delegates Ben Franklin and John Adams and Admiral Lord Richard Howe, commander of the British Navy.
And in 1977, they collaborated on Video Voice Inc., a Manhattan-based film production and distribution company that owed as much to the Chrysler Corp. as to the duo’s creative moxie: The Schimizzis’ antitheft device was patented and never licensed - but suddenly there it was, affixed to new Chryslers. They sued Chrysler for patent infringement, and “that victory helped us start Video Voice,” Ernie said.
At Video Voice, they bought and distributed kung-fu flicks and monster movies, and also produced a few low-key TV projects. “It was a lot of fun,” Greg said. “We figured, ‘How hard could it be to operate a TV station? We can put on a show!’”
On the air
Their FCC license was a dream come true: The brothers still cite a Sunday morning in 1957 when their father took them into New York to visit the quiet set of the “Today” show. The cameras and other equipment were “mesmerizing,” Greg recalled. “TV was magical to us.”
License in hand, the brothers had one year to build a transmitter and acquire and schedule programming. When Channel 23 debuted in 1995, the first thing viewers saw was a simulcast of CNN Headline News; WVVH, a 24/7 venture from the start, also became Eastern Long Island’s home of Bloomberg TV.
“Our viewers have always been sensitive to the financial world,” Greg noted. “We would simulcast Bloomberg whenever the market opened and closed.”
About a year later, Channel 23 hit its stride. Along with the simulcasts and a growing assortment of children’s programming and local sports, the Schimizzis offered extensive coverage of the annual Hamptons Classic Horse Show. At first, they inserted canned footage (”Hamptons Classic Moments”) into their CNN blocks, 10 minutes at a time. But the Classic coverage proved popular, and soon more of WVVH’s resources were dedicated to the annual event - including the installation of a fiber-optic connection from the Bridgehampton show grounds to the station’s Wainscott studio.
That allowed live, all-day Hamptons Classic coverage, “unheard of for a station our size,” Greg noted. “That really got us noticed.”
Among those noticing: Cablevision, which in 1996 added WVVH to basic packages on its Riverhead and East End systems. Just two years after the Schimizzis snagged their FCC license, Channel 23 was a hit.
Much has changed in the 14 years since Cablevision called. WVVH (Cablevision Channel 78) has dropped CNN and Bloomberg, promoting instead a combination of home-grown and syndicated content centered on dynamic lifestyles.
The station purchases content from Portland, Maine-based Outside Television, a national network dedicated to active-lifestyle content (e.g. surfing and rock-climbing). Since 2000, WVVH has also been the only New York affiliate for America One, a national alternative-sports provider offering disparate entertainment like rugby and professional wrestling.
WVVH also simulcasts about 25 minutes of Independent News Network content every weeknight, and is celebrating two years as the New York affiliate for “The Daily Buzz,” a nationally syndicated morning talk show out of Orlando, Fla. The Schimizzis often splice local content into the “Buzz” block, including remote reports on the now-legendary Montauk Monster and recent segments featuring a Hamptons pharmacist discussing sunburn, poison ivy and other summer dangers.
But the biggest change is who watches WVVH, and how. After several fruitless attempts to expand their Cablevision coverage west of Riverhead, the Schimizzi brothers, true to form, did it themselves. Recalling their old Heathkit electronics set (they couldn’t afford a color TV as kids, so they built one), the brothers set out in 2004 to stake a digital claim.
“We got tired of the frustration of just being seen on the East End,” Ernie recalled. “So we did our research, started buying equipment and created live web streaming. Now we had worldwide viewership, and when we did events like the horse show, we found we had viewership into the millions.”
With the flip of a metaphorical switch, WVVH was global. And when Verizon rolled its FiOS fiber-optic network on Long Island in 2006, it immediately contacted the Schimizzis.
“Having Long Island-specific programming in our lineup is important for our Long Island audience,” noted Verizon spokesman John Bonomo. “People like to hear about what’s happening around the block.”
So impressed with WVVH is Verizon that the station occupies a prominent spot - Channel 14 - on all Greater New York FiOS networks, including those serving New York City and Westchester. “They have lots of general-interest programming that’s very consumer-oriented,” Bonomo said. “Home shows, fashion, sports … it appeals to everybody.”
The Verizon spokesman insisted that transmitting WVVH beyond Eastern Long Island wasn’t a shot across Cablevision’s bow, but “a matter of providing good local programming for customers.” The Schimizzis, meanwhile, don’t necessarily see themselves as a pawn in the FiOS/Cablevision smackdown - but don’t mind if they are.
“Chuck Dolan told me he watches us on FiOS,” Ernie noted. “He enjoys our equestrian coverage, which he can’t get on Cablevision where he lives in Nassau County.”
However its audience tunes in, business is booming at WVVH. The station employs four full-timers and a slew of freelance reporters, producers and engineers. It’s expanding its coverage of regional events (including film festivals in the Hamptons and Nassau); and it’s “working on” high-definition broadcasts, according to Ernie.
Meanwhile, advertising revenue is up - local restaurants, banks and hotels are still buying time, while WVVH draws continued attention from regional advertisers like Jaguar and Mercedes. And for the natural-born storytellers who learned to develop their own photos as youngsters, running a TV station will always be a blast.
“Television is an art form,” Greg said. “Not just a thing where you sit in front of a box.”
VVH-TV wins NYSBA Award for Children's Programming 2007
Local Programming Highlights
New Hamptons TV® Special Program 'Sneakin 'In'
East Hampton - "Sneakin' In" - A new TV program will premiere on Hamptons TV®, on Monday, April 4 at 7 p.m. on Cablevision 78 and NYC Fios Ch. 14, (with rebroadcasts on Thursday, April 7 at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 1:30 p.m.).
Local producer Frank Vespe announcee his new music program "Sneakin' In." Viewers will be treated to a front row seat and interviews video taped at the legendary Stephen's Talkhouse, the Hampton's most famous live music club. Vespe is an East Hampton producer whose love of music is the creative force for "Sneakin' In."
"I've been shooting music videos at the Stephen Talkhouse for about two years and always brought my camera equipment through the back door, and it reminded me how I saw every James Bond movie for free on Steinway Street in Queens when one of my friends would buy one ticket and then let 10 of us in through a side door, and so I edited a version of my proposed show and gave it to the owners of the Talkhouse who really liked it, and then WVVH who also liked it. I shot Caroline Doctorow, who was really nice and very good. Her show is expected to be on next."
Greg Schimizzi, Chairman of WVVH-TV stated " 'Sneakin' In' is a fresh, local production of the best music acts that come here to perform. We are proud of Frank and this latest 'Made in East Hampton' show."
The premiere of "Sneakin' In" features "Thieves" with accomplished movie music composer Joe Delia and his group.
Bill O'Reilly, who was a young foreign correspondent for CBS News, has invaluable advice for any journalist caught by unfriendlies in war zones. "Never get down on your knees and beg," the Fox News star recently told a talk-show audience on Hamptons cable channel WVVH. "The moment you show any weakness, you will be killed. Always look your enemies in the eyes and ask them politely, but firmly, to release you." This tactic, taught to him by a Jesuit priest in Central America, saved his life twice -- once in Argentina and once in El Salvador -- O'Reilly told Ingrid Lemme on her "American Dream" show taped at Gurney's Inn in Montauk. O'Reilly also had the audience enthralled with stories of his childhood in Levittown and praised President Obama as one of the toughest and best-prepared subjects he had ever interviewed.
WVVH'S Greg and Ernie Schimizzi
Funded By an Anti-Theft Device Inspired by a TV Set and a Pony Ride
When Greg and Ernie Schimizzi were not quite five years old they recall getting pony rides at Coney Island near their home in Borough Park, Brooklyn. “We were so captivated that we asked dad if we could have a horse of our own. We thought we could put it in the backyard but we lived in a third floor walk up in Brooklyn. In a child’s mind it was feasible.” That hands-on closeness was magnified by the horses they saw on TV. Gene Autrey, Bonanza, Hopalong Cassidy, and Roy Rogers were only a few of the programs they watched in those early days.
It was that fascination for ponies and those TV Classics as well as an anti-theft device which allowed them to start their company Video Voice (1976) followed by purchasing WVVH (1993), a Hamptons TV station. And with that purchase they were able to combine their fascination for horses with a sponsorship of the Hampton Classic Horse Show (1996) and the summer polo events (1997). That was when I first met the Schimizzi brothers because at the time I was handling the PR for the Hampton Classic.
Today Hamptons TV is viewed by 5 ½ million people. It is seen on UHF (High Definition) Channel 50, Cablevision 78, Verizon FIOS Channel 14, Time Warner’s Video On Demand Channel 1111 and YouTUBE broadcast TV partner. The TV reach is New York, New Jersey, and Westchester.
In addition, the extremely handy Schimizzi brothers “developed a system in 2004 which allows our station to be seen on any computer anywhere in the world by going to www.wvvh.tv. We have about 3 ½ million viewers from that alone,” added Greg.
HORSES AND THEIR LIVES
“To this day our TV stations broadcasts all of the legendary Classics,” admits the Schimizzi brothers, who still have a fascination for those timeless programs.
“That whole mentality revolving around the horse and the cowboy represented good triumphing over evil, a sense of loyalty, justice, fairness and it all came from that cowboy ethic of the 50s,” explained Greg. “We had Roy Rogers, Dale Evans. It was wholesome. We would pretend that our Schwinn bikes were horses. With friends of ours we’d form posses. We even had the cowboy walk.”
Their dad also helped fuel their interest. “Our dad talked about the mystical horse-rider communion and how all through history the horse was instrumental, not only in warfare but what the horse meant in civilization. It obediently served without question. And that impressed us.”
Their dad Joseph, who died when the boys were 11 and 13 of a heart attack, had memories of horses during the War and was even trained as a saddle maker. He was in the Italian cavalry and so horses were an important part of his life.
When Greg, who was born August 3, 1949, and Ernie (April 3, 1951) became adolescents they continued to ignite the flame their father had set. “We rode on the Jamaica Bay riding trails along the beaches. In those days it was magical that in Brooklyn you could do that. Afterwards we took the train home not smelling the greatest after a day of mucking around,” continued Greg while Ernie chuckled in agreement.
“When we got into business we were always sensitive to distributing movies that had horses as a theme. We would gravitate to those subjects.”
GETTING FROM THERE TO HERE
Eventually the Schimizzi brothers went to college and earned degrees. Ernie “worked for a documentary film company. I was trained as a psychologist. I worked for 16 years with the Veterans Administration at Ft. Hamilton,” explained Greg.
One day in 1971, when there was no such thing as home video, a primitive black and white TV camera and recorder were donated to the VA Jewish War Veterans. Greg was immediately drawn to the equipment.
“That was when the bug of television bit.” He told Ernie about this machine that could take pictures and record television like a tape recorder. “I realized it was only a matter of time and I knew we had to be in that business.”
At that same time the Schimizzi brothers creativity was about to be unleashed. They developed an anti-theft device for trunks of cars that was patented and purchased by Chrysler.
In 1976, the monies they received from that sale allowed them to start Video Voice, a motion picture and television production and distribution company. “We’ve produced over 150 motion pictures and distributed our movies worldwide.”
As the Executive Producers, they oversaw the entire project and along the way learned every detail of every crew member. “Partnered with MacMillan Publishing, we were the first to produce motion pictures for television in Canada. They had the literary rights and we made them into movies.
“We sold not only our movies but also those made by other people,” explained Greg. And so life continued as their Video Voice grew and prospered.
FROM BROOKLYN TO THE HAMPTONS
The brothers were happy with their life and not looking for any changes but “in 1982 a friend invited us to the Eastern End of LI, a place we always felt we couldn’t fit in. We were Broolynites, but he kept insisting. “
The day the Italian brothers drove to the Hamptons they were decked out in their three piece suits and leather shoes documenting the occasion. “We were traversing the ocean beaches and the farmlands with video camera in hand. It was like Lewis & Clark going to the hinter lands,” explained Greg.
“Believe it or not on that first trip it was love at first sight and we bought a piece of property. We built a home within the year in East Hampton,” he continued.
Then about a year later they were working on a motion picture for CBS that needed to be edited. In search of someone local they came upon LTV, the PBS studios, and were impressed with the cozy setup. From that day forward they devoted themselves to making LTV a more professional place.
Then in 1993 something happened that would change their lives forever.
“Ernie did research and found one TV license on LI and it wasn’t on the air,” but the gentleman who owned it wasn’t selling. Weeks later, “we got a call and the guy said I have to make payroll. If you can get down here with a check by 5:00 I will sell you the license.” Ernie rushed into the City and the rest is history.
That was the beginning of their next learning curve. First getting approved by the FCC, then having to get the station up and running within a year.
“We were always delusional in those days and figured it wouldn’t be that difficult because we sold to Television. How hard could it be?” commented Greg? The brothers soon learned just how difficult a task this was but again they persevered and in September 1994 WVVH debuted with LTV as its home.
HAMPTON CLASSIC HERE WE COME
The always delusional Schimizzi brothers were familiar with the Hampton Classic because starting in 1985 they would take their mother there.
“We were fascinated by it,” explained Ernie. In those days they sat in the bleachers but, “one day there was a fundraiser for WLIW and Ernie won tickets to sit at their Hampton Classic VIP table on grand prix Sunday. Being up close to beautiful horses and riders made us pay more attention,” explained Greg.
This was before they had WVVH but telescoping ahead once they got the license and built the station a whole new opportunity opened up. “We wanted to incorporate our love of the horse.”
At that time I was working at the Hampton Classic and I recall the Executive Director Tony Hitchcock and I meeting with Greg and Ernie.
“We had no idea of the gravity of what was involved but we said we would like to do a 10-15 minute Hampton Classic moment which we would incorporate into our CNN Headline News segment.”
The Schimizzi brothers clearly remember a statement that Tony made to them after their sponsorship was finalized. “Congratulations fellows you found a way of depleting your resources. Owning a TV station is like owning a horse,” Ernie laughingly remarked. The Schimizzi brothers asked me if I could set up some segments and be the on-camera reporter. Those segments aired for a few years but before long that would expand.
In 1996 Cablevision was installing fiber optic throughout the East End of LI and they had an opportunity to purchase a dedicated cable of fiber from the Hampton Classic Grounds to their studio in Wainscott. It would only be in use this one week every year but it meant bringing the Hampton Classic live to their viewers.
They asked if I would host the show and I suggested that Ernie and I do it together.
“From that we were able to expand to unlimited coverage,” explained Ernie. “As the coverage grew we integrated the event with the surrounding social, cultural and economic aspects. By people seeing it on TV we drove up the attendance and we get lots of letters praising the show. Over the years we’ve won many awards for the coverage. We World Wide Web cast it live so people around the world can watch. For a local TV station to do that is unheard of. ”
BENEATH THE SURFACE
When you speak to Greg and Ernie you realize just how in sync these two brothers are. They often finish each other’s sentences and are not afraid to purport their obvious love for each other and joy at being able to work together.
“Individually our success was always for the benefit of each other,” explained Ernie. “Our success with the TV stations is an opportunity to share with others. We come from that Italian tradition (everyone eats at the table together).”
As far as what makes them happy for Greg it is that “no two days are the same and I look forward to every day. I enjoy working with my brother and my family in the business.”
For Ernie it is the pride of producing a quality product for their viewers. “That we are not going to just take something and put it on.”
The most pivotal moment in their career was “when we were awarded our patent. Less than ½ of 1 percent of people who file without legal assistance get the patent. Our grandfather worked for Ford motor company. For Greg and I at 17 and 19 to go back to Detroit and deal with the major auto manufacturers was profound. We had no personal wealth at all. Only in America can you have an opportunity like that. ”
And if you ask them about their daily routine, there is none, other than getting up around 6:00 a.m. every day.
“We constantly await each day with what new things will develop,” notes Ernie. “Every day is unique. At this stage of our business career the most rewarding part is that there isn’t any script to follow.”
Although the Schimizzi brothers enter every day with a smile the past hasn’t always been easy but their mother’s strength has guided them. “She had to face the reality of losing a husband at a young age. Greg and I have the greatest respect for single mothers. She never cried and never complained. The day that our father died we knew that our childhood had ended. From that point on we dedicated ourselves and told my mom we were going to make her proud.”
That loss has helped them in many ways including making them “exquisite handymen,” as Greg puts it. “Back then, we couldn’t afford tradesmen so we had to learn.” One summer when they were kids they built an entire TV set just by reading the instructions.”
Although Ernie has never been married, Greg is married to Francine and has two sons. Greg Jr. is a photographer while Joseph works for SONY. “It makes me proud that our influence is impacting on the next generation.”
Those who know Greg may not know that he likes to paint and sculpt, while Ernie is color blind. “Greg is color TV and I am black and white.” And while Greg only does his artistic projects occasionally whatever he starts, he finishes, complete with frame, in one day.
Greg also enjoys electronics. “I love anything to do with computers. We have designed equipment that helps us in the delivery of television. ”
While they both enjoy the Hamptons, they also enjoy their homes in Brooklyn and they garden. “We still consider Brooklyn our home and we love everything about Brooklyn, from walking to exploring. That is something that we will forever be a part of although we also have this Hamptons identification,” commented Ernie.
They were recently in Hamptons Magazine’s list of the 600 most powerful people in the Hamptons.
When asked who Greg and Ernie are, Greg commented, “I am a good guy. What you see is what you get. I try to be honest with myself and with the people around me.”
Ernie takes after his name and always tries to duplicate the meaning of the word he learned in school in a poem. “I’ve always seen being earnest as my obligation.”
Yet no matter what we talked about there continued to be themes that repeated themselves. To begin with it was obvious they love to work because any answer would always lead back to work even if the question didn’t relate to it.
It was also clear that family and honor are everything to these men. The whole family including Greg’s wife, who is a world class editor, is involved with the business. “It’s a hands-on family affair,” admits Greg.
“We are very proud of what we have accomplished because we didn’t sacrifice who we are and who we want to be. And this is a business where sometimes people try to fulfill something that is not attainable. But above and beyond we’ve always been the good guys from Brooklyn and our word is our bond. We give you a handshake on the telephone and that is as good as a written contract,” said Ernie.
My last question to the Schimizzi brothers was brief and Greg answered first. His favorite color is blue, favorite word is love, least favorite is prejudice and what he loves is justice. When it was Ernie’s turn he said “ditto. It begins and ends there because we are totally in sync.” Even when they go to the doctors their vital signs are all the same. “And we are proud of it,” admitted Ernie.
“There are times when people say, I want to be my own person. No, not here, I’m proud of my brother and find his sensibilities parallel mine,” commented Ernie.
11 Separate Episodes Of The American Dream Show Are Filmed In One Day
By T.J. Clemente
Ingrid Lemme was taping her hit TV show "American Dream," which is produced and directed by the talented brothers, Ernest and Gregory Schimizzi. The show zeros in on heritage, family, and the dreams of the successful and how those dreams became a reality. The show is shown on WVVH Hamptons TV (channel 78). Last Saturday at Gurney's Inn and Health Spa Ingrid was all smiles during the eleven shows she was taping, yes that's eleven, only stopping to have a quick lunch. I believe the show is the best of its kind out on the east end of Long Island, and is telecasted into over 5 million homes in the tri-state area.
This award winning show showcases the interviewing talents of Ingrid Lemme, and watching Ingrid tape these shows is itself a story as she proves that although taping the show is work, she truly loves meeting people and hearing their business, personal stories and of course their dreams. Her first show started at 9:30 a.m. with Lou Hammond, a public relations industry legend. Then she was off to the races.
I was fascinated to learn from guest Michael White, the Executive Director of the Long Island Planning Council, that Suffolk County is the largest and leading agricultural county in New York State.
His ideas about fishing quotas, development in the county and environmental issues had me totally captivated. Publisher Joseph Louchheim was also dynamic as he explained his views on publishing. Mr. Louchheim's seamless, style is very suitable for television.
Edward Breem is the co-author of Lucky Eddy a book about his dad Congressman Edward Breen. He brought amazing photos his dad had accumulated of people from President Kennedy in an Ohio Hotel to a striking Amelia Earhart. This is a show you should watch.
If you love late night Hamptons or music, Nancy Atlas is your person. In taping her show the very upbeat, energetic Montauk resident was totally entertaining, whether she was talking about her music career, being a mother, or the advertising on air spokesperson for Winn Dixie in Florida for the last three years. Nancy, who took her stage name from the novel Atlas Shrugged, went to college in England where she studied art and didn't actually pick up a guitar until she was 21, although she played other instruments like the viola.
Nancy is fun to watch and is always interesting as she has a way of being cool with an authentic Long Island flair. I admit I enjoy her work. Editor-in-chief Donna Halperin told us about the world of cosmetic surgery, maintaining your looks, liposuction, and other things done today besides dieting.
Jill Nicolini a news and anchor at WB11/PIX was dazzling in a yellow dress that showed off why she is also a model. She was charming and disarming with a beauty that was not only skin deep. The camera seemed to love Jill and you will to if you watch this episode. Later in the afternoon Ingrid was scheduled to interview Paul Sladkus, the Good News Broadcast President, Cate Dolan, B.E.S.T. President, Tom Clavin, author of Last Stand Fox Company, as well as being a local Hamptons writer of distinction, one I admire and look up to. Her last show was Dan Fryda, Spa Technologies CEO. But the real star of the show is Ingrid Lemme, the charismatic woman who is the Gurney's Inn Director of Marketing and Public Relations.
She makes guests laugh and feel at ease so that they unwind and tell great stories that makes great television. Ingrid also takes amazing photographs, many that end up on the covers of local magazines, pens a local column and produces a publication in North Carolina, all the time being a loving mother and Sunshine Lemme's wife.
The show appears on different channels in the tri-state area and plays many times a week.
In Montauk it's on channel 78. Often overlooked on stories about this show is the work of Ernest and Greg Schimizzi, who also own the station.
They are hard working dedicated modest brothers who exemplify what class, citizenship and integrity is all about.
If you get the chance, you should check out some of the good and hard working people that appear on the show. You aren't going to want to miss seeing people of interest tell their story.
Publication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press
Suffolk County appoint an East Ender to film commission
By Brendan O’Reilly
Television station operator Gregory F. Schimizzi of East Hampton is the newest member of the Suffolk County Film Commission, a board charged with bringing movie and television production to the county to stimulate business and create jobs.
The Suffolk County Legislature appointed Mr. Schimizzi, the founder and chairman of Hamptons TV, WVVH-TV, to the commission last week. Hamptons TV, a broadcast and cable television station in Wainscott, is the largest FCC-licensed television station in Suffolk County.
Mr. Schimizzi, originally from Brooklyn, is a graduate of New York University and has taught film and video courses at both NYU and St. John’s University. He has been in business as a filmmaker and distributor with his brother, Ernest Schimizzi, for 31 years. Together, they have had a hand in making and distributing 240 motion pictures.
The brothers attained the license for an independent television station in 1994 and launched Hamptons TV.
“We’re not a huge media group that comes from one of the media giants,” Mr. Schimizzi said. “We’re a local, home-grown group, family run, that’s very good at attracting business.”
Mr. Schimizzi said he would like to lend his expertise to streamline the process of securing film permits and locations, to make shooting in Suffolk County easier, and therefore more attractive, to film and television producers. “It’s a monumental task to organize all the services,” he said. “Our job is to understand the business and make it happen.”
“They are charged with executing the policies that Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy develops,” Suffolk County Film & Cultural Director Michelle Isabelle-Stark said of the film commission. “In other words, he really wants to use film as an economic engine.”
The film commission can also help local businesses, like delis, limousine services, lumberyards and electricians, by pointing filmmakers their way, Mr. Schimizzi said. He said the county is in a position to grasp the film industry’s dollars and put local people to work.
There is also an education component to the film commission, Mr. Schimizzi added. The commission is looking to start programs at local colleges that will include on-site learning with production companies, he said.
Ms. Isabelle-Stark said the commission members promote the locations available to film producers and they have created two programs to bring film production to Suffolk County: First Exposure, which is a student film festival that takes place in May at Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center, and Next Exposure, a production grant for independent filmmakers who shoot 80 percent of their principal photography in Suffolk County.
The film commission has 15 members, including Chairman Patrick Heaney, who is the Suffolk County commissioner of Economic Development and Workforce Housing. In addition to Mr. Schimizzi and Mr. Heaney, a former supervisor of the Town of Southampton, the commission has two other members who hail from the South Fork, Mitchell Kriegman of Wainscott Studios and Lora Fox of East End Production Services.
Ms. Isabelle-Stark said the rest of the members are from throughout Suffolk County.
“What’s great about the film commission is it really represents the entire region, the entire county,” she said.
Publication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press
At Gurney's Inn, TV series focuses on American dreams
By Aline Reynolds
The daughter of a Holocaust survivor, a prominent American actress, directors of film festivals, and a locally renowned fishing captain were brought together at Gurney’s Inn on Tuesday, September 23, to tape 10 new episodes of the “American Dream” talk show. The only unifying traits shared by the guests seemed to be diverse ancestry and unique life stories.
“American Dream” was initially created in 1996 to explore the ancestral roots of interview subjects and their cultural niches in America. Now in its 12th year, the talk show is bringing to the forefront the message of its title, underscoring the journeys guests take toward fulfilling their visions, which are emblematic of the American dream.
Montauk resident Ingrid Lemme, the program’s creator and host, explained during the September 23 taping session, the show’s underlying theme of democracy as the stepping-stone for all those reaching for the American dream. “It’s about people’s origins,” she said. “It’s a message of peace, of making everybody equal.”
The talk show’s premise, in other words, is that the dream of success in America is not reserved for the chosen few; these visions, she suggested, can be achieved by all through hard work and dedication.
Having emigrated to the United States two decades ago from her native Germany, Mrs. Lemme is aware of the challenges foreigners face in cultural assimilation.
“I have a feeling for the subject of coming to America, because I came as an immigrant. I know what it means to pack your bags and to start all over again,” she said.
In the beginning, Mrs. Lemme was particularly concerned that her accent would be a hindrance to her vision of creating and hosting her own talk show.
But she didn’t allow her foreign inflection to hold her back. Working as the respected marketing and public relations director at Gurney’s Inn in the mid 1990s, Mrs. Lemme got approval from the late Nick Monte, former innkeeper of Gurney’s Inn, to tape the talk show every 6 to 8 weeks in the panoramic, waterfront setting of the Admiral’s Room at the inn. “American Dreams” is not recorded during the high season, because Gurney’s needs the Admiral’s Room for other purposes and cannot as easily accommodate the show’s guests for overnight stays.
As it turns out, Mrs. Lemme says that her German accent has been an asset in her professional life, helping her to create a unique on-screen persona.
“People are more inclined to figure out where they came from,” she said of American citizens who pick up on her accent. “I sound like many people’s grandmothers, or great-grandmothers,” she said, which reminds guests and viewers of their own cultural heritage.
Nick Monte’s nephew, Paul Monte, current general manager of Gurney’s Inn and one of the three executive producers of the talk show, says that Mrs. Lemme’s accent “lends itself perfectly to the theme of the show” in that it “allows her to hang onto some of her roots while still being an American.”
“American Dream” was initially aired on LTV, the local East Hampton public access station, and, in 2000, was picked up by WVVH-TV Hamptons Television, which is broadcast around the tri-state area.
Mr. Monte gives all credit for the show’s staying power to its host.
“Ingrid is the show. Her life and American dream are the inspiration for the show,” Mr. Monte said, adding that the series was designed as a forum for “uplifting stories” and “positive influences” for the viewers.
Unlike other contemporary talk show hosts, “Ingrid actually listens to her guests and viewers, and the program is made right before one’s eyes,” according to Gregory Schimizzi, chairman/founder of WVVH-TV. He also pointed out that the show is meant to stand out from today’s allegedly “genuine” reality TV shows by remaining uncontrived.
Last Tuesday marked the resumption of the show’s taping after a long summer hiatus. Present were Mrs. Lemme’s guests for future shows: Phil Berg, author of “Travels with Umma”; Lee Zeldin, a Republican running for New York’s First Congressional District; John Behan, a Vietnam Marine Corps veteran and former state assemblyman; Nada Marjanovich, publisher and editor of Long Island Pulse magazine; Karen Arikian of the Hamptons International Film Festival; Janet Lee Berg, author of “Glitz of the Hamptons”; Francis J. Leik, executive director of the Long Island Film Festival; Bob Tuma, a longtime Montauk fishing captain; Jeannie Opdyke Smith, daughter of Irena Gut Opdyke, a heroic Holocaust survivor and the inspiration for the Off-Broadway production, “Irena’s Vow”; and four-time Tony nominee, actress Tovah Feldshuh, star of “Irena’s Vow.”
Mr. Leik, executive director of the Long Island Film Festival, values the talk show’s premise of heritage and family struggles and goals. He was in the midst of organizing the 4th annual CultureFest na Gaeilge, held in October, a celebration of Irish language and culture.
Mr. Leik said that appearing on the talk show offers a great opportunity to discuss cultural phenomena that celebrate foreign ancestry.
Ms. Feldshuh, who has performed at the John Drew Theater in East Hampton and at the Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center, now plays Irena in “Irena’s Vow.” The story revolves around Irena Opdyke, a Polish Catholic who, as a housekeeper for a prominent German major, put herself at high risk to save the lives of 12 Jewish refugees.
Mr. Monte said that Ms. Feldshuh’s appearance on “American Dream” was particularly memorable, since the actress’s role in “Irena’s Vow” gives American theater audiences a chance to understand and appreciate Mrs. Opdyke’s heroism during the Holocaust, so far removed from where the events unfolded.
“I think that’s quite a trip for the story, and for the individual,” Mr. Monte said.
Ms. Feldshuh said that Mrs. Lemme’s talk show “taps the river of common human behavior,” the wellspring of one’s origins and visions. The actress added that the show conveys the possibilities of accomplishing one’s own “American dream,” which, she says, is far from myth.
As a native New Yorker, Ms. Feldshuh appreciates her diverse heritage—in particular, her grandparents on both sides, Europeans who made the courageous move to America in the early 20th century.
“My family has been rewarded for their hard work. It’s not a free lunch. In the words of Thomas Edison, it’s usually 99 percent perspiration, 1 percent inspiration,” she said, asserting that both dedication and talent are needed to achieve one’s dream. The actress added that her character in “Irena’s Vow” sets a prime example of an “ordinary person doing extraordinary things,” which, she said, is one of the archetypes of the American dream.
Recalling her mother’s altruistic spirit, Mrs. Smith said that she associates the notion of the American dream with transcending personal ambitions by “caring for one another” and “being human.” The talk show, she said, should honor the unsung heroes of this world, and the sacrifices that people make at great personal cost.
“We would never be what we are if it weren’t for the steady, new influx of people with drive and new ideas who are renewing all of us over and over again,” Mrs. Lemme said of foreigners such as Mrs. Opdyke.
The 30-minute-long “American Dream” episodes air on WVVH-TV on Tuesdays at 6 p.m., Fridays at 7 p.m. and Saturdays at 2 p.m. The taping of future episodes will resume in November.
Last Updated Oct 13, 08 9:21 AM
LI Business News
By LIBN Staff
Friday, May 25, 2007
Hamptons TV hits Manhattan
Hamptons TV has made the leap to the Big Apple, even if Cablevision still won’t carry it across most of Long Island.
Wainscott-based television station WVVH-TV debuted May 16 on Time Warner Cable, appearing as channel 1111 of Time Warner’s basic package. Viewers in New York City, Westchester and Mt.Vernon can now tune into the East End station; Verizon also plans to debut Hamptons TV on its FiOS service at Channel 14.
But most Cablevision subscribers still can’t get Hamptons TV, which Bethpage-based Cablevision carries on Channel 78 only on Eastern Long Island.
WVVH-TV President Ernie Schimizzi said he’s happy other carriers have “seen the light.”
Time Warner reaches 2.5 million subscribers in New York City alone. How will that benefit the station? “Higher [advertising] rates,” Schimizzi said, “because we are delivering a greater audience.”
(01/10/2007) A team of East End property owners will take the helm within the month at Resort Sports Network, a conglomerate better known as RSN Resort Television. It airs programming through affiliate stations at over 100 “vacation destinations” across the country.
Mark A. Burchill, John Cooney, John Cumming, and Len Conway have bought the company, which is based in Maine. With the help of Ernie Schimizzi, who co-owns WVVH-TV Hamptons Television with Greg Schimizzi, his brother, they plan to take the Hamptons and its associated lifestyle to target audiences.
According to Jeff Dumais, RSN’s president, the deal is expected to be sealed by the first week in February. Initial contracts were signed in October, and once the F.C.C. gives final approval, the network, which broadcasts in such places as Aspen, Colo., and Palm Springs, Fla., will change hands.
He said they prefer to call the company RSN Resort Television, over Resort Sports Network, because “we’re not really sports programming, we’re lifestyle programming. It’s not about spectator sports,” but rather skiing, snowboarding, and other vacation-oriented recreational activities. “Most of the people who live in or visit the resorts we are programming are active people.”
According to Mr. Dumais, the new group is recognizing that RSN viewers have “other interests, so we’re starting to expand into shopping, dining, and real estate.” On Monday, a program called “Destination Real Estate” will air. Showcasing luxury houses across the nation, it is aimed at wealthy audiences, and it will tell them how to get in touch with realtors should they be interested in making big purchases.
The show will feature houses on the East End, “as [Mr. Schimizzi] is able to create relationships with local developers and agents,” Mr. Dumais said. “In terms of what will be represented locally, that will really be up to Mr. Schimizzi.”
“Our real estate market has value in other markets,” Mr. Schimizzi said. “We’ve found there is a great interest in this market, this lifestyle.” He said one thing that makes RSN such a “perfect fit” for Hamptons TV is that both the network and the affiliate gear their programs for vacationers and local residents.
Mr. Schimizzi said he has had difficulty getting Cablevision to pick up his station outside Suffolk County, but that he has been pursuing other outlets to expand WVVH’s broadcast range. Verizon Fios, a new competitor for Cablevision, will pick up the station and broadcast its programming as far as Manhattan and New Jersey in the coming months.
A streaming television broadcast can be viewed online at the station’s Web site, www.wvvh.com. According to Mr. Schimizzi, “Last year, 2.5 million people logged onto our Web site,” from places as far away as Japan.
Despite the presence of Plum TV and Local Television (public access Channel 23) Hamptons Television, at Channel 78 on Cablevision and Channel 50 by old-fashioned antenna, is the only F.C.C.-licensed station in Suffolk County. It runs “six hours of RSN programming every day, interspersed with our own special local coverage,” Mr. Schimizzi said.
Mr. Dumais said the Hamptons Television team will be able to shoot footage for new spots like “Destination Real Estate,” which would be edited with other footage by the folks at RSN.
“We’re very enthusiastic, we’re working with them jointly,” Mr. Schimizzi said.
According to Mr. Dumais, “The Hamptons programming will hopefully continue to focus on the more creative programming which helps turn the visitors into locals,” making them “fully orientated” consumers who know “what to do and experience and enjoy in that market.”
His assertion that the “Hamptons lifestyle” is a point of interest for those with an expansive travel budget has not been lost on the new investor group, all four of whom own summer houses on the South Fork. Mr. Dumais said that plans are in the works for a shopping show, as well as a “high-end cooking show” where “chefs from resorts around the country” will be profiled. As part of the network’s South Fork connection, Mr. Schimizzi will have a hand in who makes it into those profiles.
“His crew will do the shoots, he’ll find the content, and we’ll put it together,” Mr. Dumais explained. He added that additional footage for spots like the cooking show could be filmed at either of RSN’s studios, in Portland, Me., and Panama City, Fla.
The investor group, a hodgepodge of entrepreneurs who have more than cash in common, are connected through major ski destinations in the West. Mark Burchill is a part-time resident of Quogue who is on the board of directors for Group for the South Fork. He spends winters in Telluride, Colo., where he runs a business as a venture capitalist.
John Cumming, the C.E.O. of Powdr Corp, which owns Mount Bachelor in Oregon, Park City Mountain Resort in Utah, and Alpine Meadows, Boreal, and Soda Springs in California, also spends summers on the South Fork, along with John Cooney, who owns EUE Screen Gems Ltd., a Manhattan-based film production company, and Len Conway, a former partner in Telluride Ski and Golf Corporation, who owns a house in Westhampton Beach.
Hamptons TV spreads wings
By Claude Solnik
Friday, December 22, 2006
Although it’s been stymied in efforts to get Cablevision to carry the station beyond the East End, WVVH-TV, known as Hamptons TV, is being picked up by Time Warner Cable and Verizon’s FiOS system across their coverage areas.
The East Hampton-based channel said Time Warner already has debuted WVVH on Staten Island and parts of New Jersey and is rolling it out across its entire New York metropolitan subscription area as Hamptons TV Video on Demand.
“The entirety will happen in the first quarter of 2007,” said WVVH President Ernie Schimizzi. “We’ll be available at no additional charge to Time Warner subscribers.”
Hamptons TV, already carried on Channel 50 and on Channel 78 on Cablevision’s East End system, also is slated to debut on Verizon’s FiOS system on Channel 14 in early 2007.
“We’re making our connections right now between our studio in Long Island and their facility in Jamaica,” Schimizzi said, adding the station will be part of FiOS’s basic package.
Four investors with summer homes on the East End are acquiring the Resort Sports Network, a Portland, Maine-based network of stations in vacation communities whose affiliates include Hamptons TV.
Although East Hampton-based Hamptons TV remains independently owned, it will serve as the network’s East End affiliate.
The terms of the takeover weren’t disclosed and the agreement is pending Fed-eral Communications Comm-ission approval. The deal is expected to close in January.
The consortium of part-time East Enders control a network of 10 stations owned by RSN and 20 affiliated stations stretching from California to Florida, reaching 1.7 million homes in about 100 resorts.
Mark A. Burchill, co-founder of TV ad sales firm 24/7 Media and one of the quartet of new owners, said the group sees the potential to expand.
“We are big believers in the entertainment and marketing power of resort-based media,” said Burchill. “We intend to build upon RSN’s leadership position in resort media and grow all aspects of the business.”
RSN, founded in 1986, first plans to grow its footprint in Colorado by launching a new station and bringing on an affiliate.
RSN President Jeff Dumais said the investor group had seen RSN at various ski resorts and on the East End.
In addition to Burchill, the other investors are John Cooney, co-owner of EUE Screen Gems Ltd., which produces programs such as “The Rachael Ray Show”; John Cumming, CEO of Powdr Corp., which owns Mt. Bachelor, Park City Resort and Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort; and Len Conway, a former partner in Telluride Ski and Golf Corp.
Ernie Schimizzi, president of WVVH TV, known as Hamptons TV, said his station recently added a sixth hour of RSN programming.
Although certain RSN shows such as its morning program, “RSN Outdoors,” air across most of the network, RSN also produces content tailored to local markets.
Dumais said that RSN plans to roll out new shows, potentially leading to a bigger chunk of time in affiliate schedules.
“We’ll put more money into creating a greater abundance of national content,” Dumais said. “We’ll do more lifestyle programming.”
He said RSN is gearing up to launch a high-end real estate program showcasing luxury homes in resorts markets such as the Hamptons, Lake Tahoe, Vail and Jackson Hole.
“It’s a great opportunity for folks who are listing multi-million-dollar homes to have those properties showcased in front of likeminded home owners and visitors in high-end resorts around the country,” Dumais said.
WVVH-TV - Hampton's Television Coverage of the 31st Annual Hampton Classic Horse Show
WVVH-TV UHF/HDTV Channel 50 and Cablevision Channel 78, Verizon FiOS Channel 14 and Time Warner Cable Video On Demand Channel 1111 is the official television station of the Hampton Classic Horse Show. This year WVVH-TV will be providing over 40 hours of live coverage. WVVH-TV will again activate its permanent Lightpath fiber optic link between the Bridgehampton Hampton Classic Show Grounds and the WVVH-TV Studios in Wainscott, New York to bring the excitement of the Hampton Classic live in digital quality to WVVH-TV’s viewers, and unprecedented commitment for coverage of a live sports event by a New York television station. The TV coverage is hosted by experienced equestrian commentators Diana De Rosa, Barbara Hakim and Ernie Schimizzi. This year a worldwide audience can watch on WVVH-TV’s exclusive webstream broadcast by logging on at www.hamptonclassictv.com
The Hampton Classic Horse Show is the most prestigious one-week outdoor hunter/jumper horse show in the nation. With more than 1300 horses exhibited, the Classic is not only a sporting event of major proportions, but also one of the most extravagant social events of the summer. The 31ST ANNUAL HAMPTON CLASSIC HORSE SHOW began on August 27th and runs through September 3rd, Grand Prix Sunday. WVVH-TV will provide live coverage of competition and events from 1 PM to 5 PM daily. Nightly specials will recap each day’s activities beginning at 8 PM to 10 PM, followed by each morning’s broadcast “Breakfast at the Classic” at 8 AM to 10 AM.
“This will be our 11th year producing live TV coverage from the Hampton Classic. We have won many national awards for our broadcast of this premier equestrian event in the nation. Our viewers love our live programs and prime-time specials. WVVH-TV is committed to providing the best in locally produced television for a community that enjoys only the highest standards of quality. The Hampton Classic fulfills that commitment to excellence and more,” stated Greg Schimizzi, Chairman, WVVH-TV.
So, whether you are local to the Hamptons or live across the world you will have access to WVVH-TV’s coverage of this year’s Hampton Classic.
By Allison Romano -- Broadcasting & Cable, 6/20/2006 9:56:00 AM
Just in time for the summer beach season, Long Island, N.Y.-based station WVVH is making its local programs available on Time Warner Cable's video-on-demand system.
The offering, dubbed Hamptons TV (named for WVVH's location in the tony Hamptons beach community of eastern Long Island), will allow users to watch the station's shows throughout the day. WVVH is the official TV station for the Hampton Classic Horse Show and the Hamptons International Film The service will be available to Time Warner subscribers throughout the New York market.
“With Time Warner Cable’s VOD you decide what you want to see when you want to see it," Ernie Schimizzi, President and co-founder of WVVH-TV said in a statement. "This is a big step for us as we expand WVVH-TV throughout the New York market by offering our channel and its award winning programming to a wider audience.”
Along with Time Warner, WVVH is also carried on Cablevision and, last month, inked a carriage deal with Verizon's FioOS video service for New York, New Jersey and web streaming.
The small Hamptons television station, which is available on UHF channel 50 and on Channel 78 on Cablevision’s East End system, has struck a carriage agreement with Verizon’s FiOS television.
Executives hope the deal will give the station the exposure it’s craved since Cablevision first added WVVH to its East End service in 1995.
“It’s a carriage agreement with Verizon for all of New York,” said Ernie Schimizzi, president and co-founder of WVVH. “As they roll out the service in Westchester, Rockland, Nassau, Suffolk, New York City and New Jersey, our station will be available. It’s a big step for us.”
WVVH is also in talks with Time Warner Cable, the dominant cable provider in Manhattan and Queens, to carry the station on its New York City systems.
On the other hand, Cablevision has not added it to any of its non-East End systems.
“We’ve always been willing to expand on its platform, but it hasn’t happened,” Schimizzi said.
Cablevision had no comment.
The station is not available to DirecTV customers.
WVVH carries various sports and entertainment programming, including Canadian Football League and American Hockey League games. It also carries the Hamptons Classic Horse Show.
Its news division covers the East End. The station is a finalist for a Press Club of Long Island award. The PCLI is holding its annual awards gala on June 8.