Residents of Foxwood Springs in Raymore may not be in the news every day, but they make the news every day. The residents at the retirement community book guests, interview, record and broadcast their own version of current event news called “FSTV.”
At the helm of this production are residents, Ed Peeples and Linda McNiel. The two, neither of whom have a background in television news, are 82 and 80, respectively.
“I’m a former minister,” said Ed. He added, “But this is something I’ve never done and I enjoy it. I like it because we’re the hub of information for the community. I like to be a resource for people.”
FSTV is run entirely by residents; from story ideas to interviews, to running cameras and running the control board – all operated by a different resident every day. The broadcast got its start more than 33 years ago by Herb and Doris Kohl. When her husband passed away, Doris took over as head of the studio. Now, 92, she’s retired from the production but enjoys watching it continue through the vision and leadership of Ed and Linda. As a nod to their history, the residents renamed their studio, the “Doris and Herb Kohl” studio.
Linda is one of the newest members of the team, coming on just in May of 2018, helps lead the volunteers. Ed praises her for her computer skills and administrative abilities; he believes those things make her a vital part of the operation. She helps keep things organized and assists him with schedules and administrative work.
“I like it because I wouldn’t know nearly the number of people that I know now or know about them,” said Linda. “I’ve only been here for about a year and this has helped me get to know more people and learn more things. When Ed asked me to help, I was excited to do something I had never done before.”
The news show is broadcast on an in-house television channel every weekday live at 8:45-9:30 a.m., with replay options at 3:15 p.m. and 9 p.m. Resident can enjoy the show in their own apartments or common areas.