WEBSTER CITY - Is everyone ready for an encore?
Ten months after the community of Webster City became an RVTV legend, Area Chamber of Commerce Director Deb Brown announced yesterday that the gang from WHO-TV will again make a scheduled stop in town this fall in the days leading up to the Cy-Hawk football game, scheduled to take place on Sept. 13 at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City.
WHO-TV Sports Director Keith Murphy will be joined by colleagues Ed Wilson, John Sears and Michael Admire when RVTV rolls into town to kickoff its week on Monday, Sept. 8.
DFJ file photo by Jim Krajewski
Thousands of fans poured into the streets in downtown Webster City last September when the sports crew from WHO-TV made an appearance in town for its annual RVTV road trip through Iowa. The community was so impressive that the Des Moines television station is making Webster City its first RVTV stop this fall.
DFJ file photo by Troy Banning
Keith Murphy (left) and Andy Fales did their daily Murph and Andy Radio Show from Webster City during their RVTV stop last September. Murphy is unsure of what the plan will be when the crew makes a return trip to town on Monday, September 8.
Community members came out in droves last year and took the entire WHO-TV crew by surprise with the reception they received. Murphy and Andy Fales called Webster City "the best RVTV stop we've ever had" in the days following.
"Yeah, it's probably the best stop we've every had," Murphy reiterated in a telephone interview last night. "It was really impressive because Webster City is not a huge city. To see all of those people show up and have fun in the community, that was just awesome."
A year ago Murphy said that the 2013 RVTV trip would most likely be the station's last, at least for several years. But he says the fervor the stops created forced the management staff at WHO-TV to rethink its decision to shut it down.
"We did think that we were done and we felt like going into last year that it was time. It had run its course and it was time to find a different way to celebrate the Cy-Hawk rivalry," Murphy said. "But we had the biggest crowds we've ever had last year and the best response we've ever had. It's not hyperbole to say Webster City played a big part in that."
Fales won't be a regular member of the traveling posse this fall, but Murphy says the addition of Wilson, the chief meteorologist at WHO-TV, will create a new set of memories for everyone involved.
"Ed has always wanted to go, so it should be a lot of fun," Murphy said.
The only other confirmed stop presently is Albia, which will host the festivities on Thursday, Sept. 11. The southern Iowa town had long held the title of "best RVTV stop" before Webster City joined the party a year ago and Murphy says the planning committee in Albia has already verbalized its desire to regain the top spot.
"I know Albia is going to be coming after Webster City," Murphy said. "That was the previous high water mark."
Can Webster City pull it off again and be even bigger and better than last fall? That will be the challenge put on the shoulders of Brown and everyone that calls the community home.
"I am a little bit concerned about that because anytime you do something for a second time it runs the risk of not being as important to people," Murphy said. "More people having more fun, that would (help top last year). But it seems like it would be hard to do much more ... it was great."
WHO-TV hopes to finalize the other three stops on the RVTV tour in the upcoming days.
Iowa went into Jack Trice Stadium in Ames last year and handed Iowa State a 27-21 loss.