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The Today Show Comes to Indy…

Posted By · February 2, 2012 at 10:51 am

While “celebrity watch” is at fever pitch the last days leading to the Super Bowl…there are some great opportunities to see some of your favorites–and avoid the crowds at the same time!

The NBC “Today Show” is broadcasting live from Indianapolis starting Friday.  “Today at the Superbowl” kicks-off with Ann Curry and Al Roker broadcasting live from the Super Bowl Village at Pan Am Center at 7 a.m.   (My sources tell me Al Roker is already in town doing some prep work.)

The Today Show headed to Indy!

Today show promoters say during the show, Adam Levine and Gym Class Heroes will perform a special live concert,
Jimmy Fallon will stop by, and Ann and Al will get a preview of the halftime show featuring Madonna . 

And you’re invited to watch it all  in person!  Just head to the corner of West Georgia Street and South Capitol Avenue–just outside the entrance to the NFL Experience.

On Saturday, Jenna Wolfe will co-host a special Saturday edition of “Today,  live from  the same location.  Crowds are again encouraged to watch the broadcast, which starts at 7 a.m.

On Super Bowl Sunday  Ann Curry, Al Roker, Natalie Morales and Savannah Guthrie  will broadcast live from Lucas Oil Stadium.  (That’s not one you’ll be able to stop by to see–but you can check it out on Channel 13!)

The festivities in Indy will continue through Monday, February 6th, as Al recaps the big game from the Soldiers and Sailors Monument on Monument Circle.  That’s one you can watch in person.

While the Today Show starts at 7am–the WTHR Sunrise team is live just ahead of that!  Why not get there early and say ‘hi” to Julia Moffitt and Chuck Lofton who continue to take the show live from Super Bowl Village –again, Georgia and Capitol.

You may even run into Jeremy Brilliant who’s roaming the Village and reporting on all things Super Bowl.

Sunrise starts at 4:30a.  The Today Show at 7am.  Bring some coffee  (and a camera!) and spend an entertaining morning with your favorite news teams!  Who knows, you might even make it on t-v!


Kris Kirschner

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What Happens in Indy….

Posted By · February 1, 2012 at 10:58 am

You know the saying, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas”?  At the risk of betraying “the code”, there is just too much to share about last night’s Media Party to keep it to myself.

Each year the Super Bowl host city puts on a shindig for all the visiting and local media; as well as “contributors”–those individuals and businesses who generously provided finanical support.

Last night, I was lucky enough to go to Indy’s version.

The backdrop couldn’t have been better–what says Indy more than the Indianapolis Motor Speedway?

Media Party at IMS









One of the highlights was the glass used to serve beer.  It was made completely out of ice.  And you were given a glove to hold it.  (I’ll admit I couldn’t drink mind fast enough before the glass melted–but it was a great novelty and conversation starter!)

The glass is made entirely of ice! Gloves were provided

The party continued in the Pagoda where each floor served something different.  On the 4th floor, whisky and cigars.  On the the 5th floor, burgers and beer.  But the best part, was the open access to so many things “racing”.

Visitors could get their photo taken kissing the yard of bricks.  The Super cars were lined up–another photo op.  I saw some  visitors on the winner’s stand.   The Borg-Warner and Lombardi trophies both available for photos as well.

And what party would be complete without dropping a few names?  Some of the “names” seen mingling:   former IMS honcho Tony George;  Speaker of the Indiana House Brian Bosma;

 IMS CEO John Belsksus;  Driver Ed Carpenter; comedian Mike Epps. 

All in all, it was a wonderful night.  And for those of us who’ve been putting in long hours, a chance to take a breath, have a few laughs, and just relax. 


Now, back to our Super coverage. 

 Kris Kirschner

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Media Day…

Posted By · January 31, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Media Day often has a “wild” reputation.   It’s because the frenzy of reporters, photographers, media types of all kinds is at fever pitch.  And also because it often attracts some unusual characters  (a reporter dressed as Batman’s sidekick for one).

Since I’ve never covered a Super Bowl Media Day, how could I resist?

I found the process of getting in to Lucas Oil Stadium almost as interesting as the event itself.

Yes, I am a credential-holding member of the media.  But that doesn’t afford cart-blanche access.

We’re talking about  two powerhouse Super Bowl teams–inside the Super Bowl stadium–which for the remainder of this week is the “property” of the NFL.  You better believe there’s security!  Even for–maybe even “especially” for –the media.

WTHR photographer Greg Wilkerson and I were directed down an alley just west of the stadium into a large white tent.   For me, the security process was pretty easy.  A pat down, pockets emptied, through a metal detector, then a scan of my credential (much like they scan tickets to a concert) and I’m good.

Security checks include scanning media credentials

For Greg, however, not so fast.  He’s carrying the gear–a t-v grade camera, and wireless microphone.  Once past the metal detector, he’s directed to a corner of the room, along with a dozen or so other videographers, to watch as a bomb-sniffing dog checks out their gear.

He moves on to another part of the room–where he’s assigned a radio frequency for his wireless mike.  Then to yet another station where that frequency is checked.

WTHR photographer Greg Wilkerson--"what's your frequency"?

It’s a process that takes about 15 minutes.    And will have to be repeated each time we enter Lucas Oil Stadium this week.

I’m not complaining.  The security staff was extremely friendly and helpful.  And it keeps us all feeling protected.  I find the whole process fascinating.

By the time we made it inside, the interviews had already started.  The Patriots first–the key players and the head coach each on their own “stage” (think lemonade stand on a grander scale) about 10 yards apart.  The bigger the name, the bigger the crowd of media surrounding them.  QB Tom Brady attracted the biggest crowd, as you might guess. (Eli Manning held his own for the Giants too!)

Patriots QB Tom Brady

Fans were seated in the lower level on one side of the stadium.  Each provided with headsets to listen to the interviews.  Media–or those credentialed to be there–were the only ones allowed on the field where the interviews were taking place.

As I said, I was expecting “wild”–so was a little surprised at how quiet it was inside that stadium.  Except for the occasional eruption of applause or cheers by the fans,  I felt talking too far above a whisper might draw unwanted attention.

Giants QB Eli Manning

And I really didn’t see as many “characters” as I expected.  (Although I did see Batman’s sidekick–a “reporter” from Nickelodeon; and someone dressed in a pirate hat. I’m sure there were others.)

Still, I found myself in a perfect place to “people watch”.   Occasionally I would hear a reporter from another country–speaking in his native language.  Watching as photographers position themselves for that perfect shot. 

I ran into some old friends who I worked with years ago; and tried to spy those whose work I’ve admired and aspired to.

And yes, I managed to see a football player or two. 

Media Day

All in all a fantastic experience.   While not one I would describe as “wild”–I felt priveledged to have a front-row seat. 


Kris Kirschner


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Super Photo Op…

Posted By · January 30, 2012 at 11:30 am

It is safe to say Indianapolis is making its own “sports history” as it hosts what’s considered the premiere sporting event, the Super Bowl.

And who doesn’t want to capture the moment?  All over the city are “photo ops”…great places to get that perfect picture to remember this week for years to come. 

WTHR (your Super Bowl station)  is happy to offer our own as well. 

Wnen you enter the NFL Experience from Capitol Avenue –just past the giant headless football mannequins—and you’re first entrance on the left—look to the back and you’ll see the giant 13 logo.

That’s where you can get your picture taken with the Lombardi Trophy!  Ok, it’s a backdrop, not the real thing—but who’s going to know in a photo?  (And it beats waiting for hours to get your picture taken with the “real” thing)  Plus, its FREE!

A perfect family photo op!









We have a photographer shoot the photo which you can download from our WTHR Facebook page.  (wouldn’t it make a great Christmas card?)  Or you can take a pic with your own camera.


Our WTHR staff take the photos for you!











While you’re there you can meet some of the WTHR anchors and   reporters—get an autograph—or better yet, another photo!  (Your  Super Bowl photo album is filling up fast!)  You can even watch one of our news broadcasts.

WTHR set at NFL Experience







Starting tonight, and every night this week, we’ll bring our show to  the NFL Experience,  and  Georgia Street right in the heart of Super Bowl Village (there’s another photo op for you!).  Not to mention live reports from various other locations.

We’ll also bring you our Super Special starting at 7:30 this week.  And Super Sunrise from 6a-Noon Sunday. 

But I digress…

Back to the NFL Experience….make sure you get your free “lip balm” in a cute little Channel 13 holder (a must-have during these windy days).

Compliments of Channel 13 WTHR!








On a personal note, I want to thank all those who visited with me Sunday at NFLX.  Great to see you all and now I have some special moments to remember–soon to fill the pages of my Super Bowl scrapbook.

 See all Super Bowl stories, maps, events, parking info, road closures and more!


Kris Kirschner






























































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































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Super Bowl Bits….

Posted By · January 25, 2012 at 10:41 am

As promised, Channel 13 is covering the Super Bowl from every angle–including the sure to be popular NFL Experience. 

Our amazing engineering and production staff completed their task of setting up the timelapse camera so you can watch beam by beam the NFL Experience put together at the Convention Center–then watch the fun from the comfort of your PC!  

Check it out here

They’ve also been constructing the WTHR set where some of our newscast will be broadcast during Super Bowl week. 

Setting the stage at NFL Experience



The control room









With all the parties and events scheduled for the coming week…Hoosiers are putting on their “Super Sunday” best.  My friends at Simply Skin Med Spa in Fishers tell me they’ve been busier than usual lately.  Mostly for chemical peels–a process used to improve and smooth the texture of the face  using a chemical solution that causes the dead skin eventually peel off.(Yes it’s as unpleasant as it sounds–but the results are worth it, I’m told!)

At the Bobby Cooper Salon in Broad Ripple, stylists are excitedly preparing to primp about 30-some NFL wives  (even practicing on their day off).  All for the annual  Nfl Wives Association fashion show which will take place at Saks   Fifth Avenue February 3rd.  Open to the public, it’s a charity event where a portion of the proceeds this year goes to Peyton Manning’s Children’s Hospital at  St Vincent’s.

11 days and counting….

Kris Kirschner

See all Super Bowl stories, maps, events, parking info, road closures and more!

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Super Space for Rent…

Posted By · January 21, 2012 at 2:12 pm

By all estimates, the Super Bowl is a potential windfall for downtown businesses hoping to cash in on the frenzy of the 100-thousand-plus visitors.

The city itself claims it comes with an economic impact of somewhere  between $125 million and $400 million.

But there is also money to be made by the savvy Hoosier—-willing to give up hearth and  home for a little cash in hand.  In other words, renting out their homes to fans wanting a place to stay while in town for the big game.

I’ve often asked myself—-(and my husband)—-whether we could open our doors to complete strangers during Super Bowl week.   The financial benefits (up to $10-thousand a day if you believe the signs)  seemed tempting.  But could I put a pricetag on my privacy?

It was during one of these discussions my husband mentioned a nephew who would indeed be offering his very attractive (and just two miles from Lucas Oil Stadium his very convenient) home to rent for the Super Bowl.

Greg Cummins is a talented, intelligent young professional (and a really nice guy) who lives in one of the historic districts near dowtown Indy. 

He tells me it was an easy decision to rent his house for the Super Bowl—-having done business in rental properites in the past.  

 And it’s that previous experience that helped him come up with a rental agreement that also gives him peace of mind.

For instance says Greg:  ” There won’t be time to do credit  checks so I am requiring full payment, upfront via a money wire or overnight cashier’s check or money order.”

He also plans to remove anything of value.      (That was actually my biggest deterrent.  The thought of having to remove all my personal effects, including clothing–seemed too daunting a task).

And under his contract, he can make daily onsite visits.

 To start the process, Greg  tells me he did  simple searches on the Internet to see what company or companies got the most hits.  He  decided on  www.sportseventrentals.com

  “It costs only  $49 to post an ad on the site, but that is all they do.  I am still responsible for communicating with the renters, collecting money and come up with a contract which I found online and simply modified. I also decided to list it on Craig’s list.   It works in my favor that the Colts are not in it this year which means more out-of-towners looking to rent.  ”

He  took  photos of his home  and through creative writing, came up with an attractive description.   See what you think:

“My home is architecturally interesting with bamboo floors, granite counter tops, stainless steel appliances and many bells and whistles like a garden tub, outdoor grill and heater. ” 

 He says you really need to emphasize the bells and whistles or you’ll “just be another home for rent.”  

 Who am I to argue?

Afterall,  shouldn’t a renter paying $2000/night with a four night minimum  feel they are getting their money’s worth?

According to this  Super opportunist,  “The Super Bowl is  cash cow and if you really put your mind to it, there are lots of ways to ake money from this event.”

So Super Bowl XLVI may indeed deliver on its promise to pay off.

At least for people like Greg:  willing to take a gamble—-banking on a big payout no matter who wins the game.


Kris Kirschner

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A Unique NFL Experience…

Posted By · January 18, 2012 at 9:12 am

One of the biggest attractions for Super Bowl XLVI will no doubtedly be the NFL experience.

It’s a fan-friendly, interactive pro football “theme park” that will take up the 500,000 square feet of space inside the Indiana Convention Center.

A pretty impressive set-up from all accounts, and one you can literally see “set up” right before your eyes!

The NFL Experience opens January 27th, but today, the WTHR engineering team is setting up a special camera to watch as crews assemble this popular attraction.

 The time lapse camera will record a frame about every minute  of the build-up of the NFL Experience. Once the build-up is done, a time lapse video of it will be posted on our website for people to view. After the camera has done the time-lapse, it will change over to a live feed from inside NFL for the duration of the event.

Be sure to have www.wthr.com listed on your “favorites” so you don’t miss one minute of the action!

For more information on the NFL Experience:



Kris Kirschner


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Whatever the Weather Brings…

Posted By · January 17, 2012 at 11:45 am

On this strange, stormy day, many of us in the newsroom pondered the question many probably considered 19 days before Super Bowl XLVI:  what will the weather bring, and are we prepared?

The Indy Super Bowl committee assures us they are ready for every scenario.  (Let’s hope they won’t be put to the test).

But what about the station bringing you the big game? 

We have some big plans when it comes to our coverage, including nightly specials the week leading up to the Super Bowl; a Super Saturday show; and a special Sunrise show Super Bowl Sunday.  Much of our live coverage out in the elements where the action is (think zipline!), including at the Super Bowl Village, outside Lucas Oil Stadium, and inside the NFL Experience. 

As our anchors and reporters prepare by learning as much as we can about each event surrounding the Super Bowl and how to get you there, our amazing production and engineering teams work to make sure we’re comfortable doing it.

Production manager Randy White–a most organized and thoughtful person–offered this plan:

We have infra red heaters at our Georgia Street location.    We’ll have  foot heaters as well  (they’re actually heating pads for pets–what I consider an ingenious idea!)  We also have the production truck there as a warming station for our crew.

We'll use heating pads like this for anchors to stand on to keep feet warm!

 At our other outdoor location, the Domestic Compound at the Stadium, we will be quite exposed to weather as the platform is not heated or covered. We will have access to the NBC NewsChannel trailer located nearby to take breaks from the cold if necessary. Otherwise, we are out in it!

 Our NFL Experience stage inside the convention center is our indoor fallback location. If we had weather like (Tuesday) morning with lightning and warnings and such, we would take it all inside.

By the way, I should mention, while you see the anchors and reporters (what we very loosely call ‘talent’)  it takes a village to raise a broadcast.  There will be about 15 members of the crew (production and engineering) behind the cameras each day making sure it all works like clockwork rain or shine…or snow.

So here’s to whatever the weather brings…and hopefully coverage you won’t soon forget.

Kris Kirschner

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