Located at the Howard Dean Center at Springfield High School, Springfield Area Public Access Corporation or SAPA TV is a state-funded, not-for-profit public television channel currently celebrating their tenth year of operation.
SAPA TV provides video production and training services for area residents and social service agencies that are interested in producing programs to inform and serve their local communities.
Funded by the "PEG Access Fee," which is comprised through a small percentage of each cable subscriber's monthly bill, SAPA TV was created in 1998 and began to broadcast in 1999.
Each and every program on SAPA is sponsored by a local resident of Springfield, Chester, Weathersfield, Perkinsville or Ascutney and is also locally produced with the help of many local volunteers.
"SAPA provides a very strong informational thread that runs through the fabric of all the communities we serve," SAPA program director Kevin Forrest said in a recent, exclusive Messenger interview.
Forrest joined the SAPA team last winter after learning that executive director Bruce Johnson was looking for someone to help with programming and scheduling.
"After spending almost my entire working career in community journalism, coming to SAPA has been a comfortable and satisfying transition," Forrest said. "SAPA TV allows residents a raw, unfiltered view of their government bodies in action, as well as offering interesting historical and scientific programs for those who would like to broaden their knowledge."
The original Channel 13 was changed state-wide to Channel 8 in 2002, then SAPA TV was granted a second channel (Channel 10) in recognition of their hard work and the amount of shows they were producing each week.
Channel 10 primarily carries government and educational-related programs such as local school sports, functions and school board meetings, while Channel 8 primarily carries public programs such as the Miller Arts Center and VAULT programs, garden club shows and hospital lectures.