UHF television station located on Channel 21 in Phoenix, Arizona that has been owned by and affiliated with the preachers of the Trinity Broadcasting Network for 25 years. It looks and sounds like just another ordinary TBN affiliate giving people their daily dose of Benny Hinn and Praise the Lord, but this station has a strange past.
KPAZ went on the air on September 16, 1967 as the first UHF television station in Phoenix, with studios located in the Tower Plaza Mall. According to an ad they placed in that day's Arizona Republic newspaper, people who were watching were treated with a sample of its regular schedule, mainly Spanish-language programming with a few English shows thrown in. During its first week of operation, KPAZ aired a number a sporting events, including a golf shoot-out from the Phoenix Country Club and the exotic sport of hockey (from Canada!). However, the cornerstone of the station's programming was bullfighting from Spain, with the grim Hemingway-esque title Death in the Afternoon.
The schizophrenic Spanish/English format continued until late 1970, when the owners ran out of money and sold the station to a local Pentecostal church. As time went by, the Spanish programming disappeared and was replaced with more English and religious shows. A sample schedule from 1974 shows the station airing The PTL Club, New Zoo Revue, the 50's sitcom The Real McCoy's, a very-low-budget local newscast, and a nightly religious show produced by the station called The Gap (no, not the department store). For a period of time, Phoenix Giants (the minor-league feeder team for the San Francisco Giants at the time) baseball games aired on occasion.
1975 marked a new era at KPAZ, with the construction of new studios built on land next to the church which owned the station (where the station still resides today). Secular programming on the schedule made way for even more religious shows. But, the station still wasn't making any money, and in 1977 its owners decided to sell out to TBN. From then on, it became an all-religious TV station with hours of televangelism beaming from the top of South Mountain.
Just to think, this station could have had some potential!