WCNY Productions

From Audiovisual Identity Database

Descriptions by
BenIsRandom, Nightspears, and others

Editions by

Video captures courtesy of
Cesar Blanco, Alden's Vintage PBS Archive, The PBS-ST Archive and Syracuse Nostalgia


WCNY (abbreviated Central New York) is a PBS affiliate located in Syracuse, New York that was established in 1965 as an affiliate of NET. It became a PBS affiliate in 1970. It was founded by the Onondaga County School Board Association under a charter by the New York State Department of Education. The station was originally assigned the call letters WHTV, but switched to WCNY-TV on September 23, 1965, after the station now known as WWNY-TV in Watertown gave up the call letters. WCNY went on the air on December 20, 1965.

1st Logo (198?-1988?)

Logo: On an dark background with some orange light at the bottom of the screen, we see a dark blue circle in the center with a brown tree in it that has some leaves which can be identified by some brown outlines. The circle starts shining, but then stops. When it stop shining, some events happen:

  • The leaves start to become red, orange, gold and (really bright) yellow .
  • The brown outlines disappears from the leaves.
  • A black outline appears around the circle.
  • The background becomes brighter, making it less dark and also doesn't contain the orange color, but has a more purple-ish vibe than before
  • And the background also shines at the center, with the leaves also shining.

The circle flashes to a black background, which has text in the center that says "WCNY " in blue with an orange glow appears behind, with text below reading "SYRACUSE" in Eurostile Light font. The orange shining still appears, before being disappearing 1 second later. It then quickly flashes away to another black background, with similar looking text reading "PRESENTS " fading in in the center, before it too fades out 2 seconds later.

Variants: There is a shorter variant that not only doesn't contain the "circle" part, but the transition from the animation of the "WCNY text and the "PRESENTS" text is simply fade in and out.

Technique: Really good 2D animation, especially for a PBS member station.

Music/Sounds: A great ominous and mystery-like synth tune theme that becomes cheerful when the circle stop shining, with some flash and whoosh noise being added in.

Availability: Ultra rare. This logo, so far, has only been seen once. This appearance was on Tell Us About The War. It may possibly have been seen on Old Enough To Care, but footage from that series is yet to surface. You may be able to see it if you have old recordings of WCNY programming from the 80s.

Legacy: This is one of the best 2D logos in the PBS member stations's history, and the music makes it even better.

2nd Logo (199?-2000)

Logo: Against a red and gray marble background that moves upwards, we see the text "WCNY" in a metallic, futuristic font that flips up. "SYRACUSE" zooms in below, in a white spaced out font and the logo sparkles and shines.

Variant: A version exists where the text "SYRACUSE" is replaced with "PRESENTS".

Technique: The moving background, the logo flipping. "SYRACUSE" zooming in.

Music/Sounds: Usually silent. However, there is a version with a dark synth chord that gets higher in pitch as the logo progresses. This version has been seen more than once.

Availability: Can be seen on most content WCNY produced during the 90s. The earliest it's been seen is from 1995, but would probably be seen on programs from the early 90s. Whenever Pappyland is rerun on select PBS stations, you might find the logo there.

Legacy: A pretty good 90s PBS logo, though it's missing some music.

3rd Logo (2000-2001?)

Logo: We see a yellow light that moves into the screen, revealing the WCNY logo in a metal texture. Another light does the same actions to reveal the word "SYRACUSE" in Arial.

Technique: Simple animation

Music/Sounds: A synth chime sound.

Availability: Extremely rare, due to its short timeframe.

Legacy: This logo looks so simple to be made.

4th Logo (2001?-2007)

Screenshot 2021-09-04 5.56.14 PM.png

Logo: On a black background, we see "WCNY", with a few multicolored flames coming out of the Y. It zooms out. "presents" fades in below.

Variant: On HD programs, it would start out the same as the main variant, but then an HD symbol flips in next to it with some blue trails. Text that shows WCNY's website appears letter by letter at the same time. "PRESENTS" text appears similarly at the bottom of the screen.

Technique: The zooming out and fading in, too simple.

Music/Sounds: A segment of what seems to be a redone version of the previous logo's music, with a synth orchestra.

Availability: Seen on Facing HIV/AIDS In Central New York, as well as other WCNY programs of the time.

5th (known) Logo (2022-)

Screenshot 2022-04-02 5.37.46 PM.png


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