The Special Collections and Archives Research Center (SCARC) obtained a large collection of audio-visual materials from KBVR-TV in 2015, when OSU’s student television studios moved into the new Student Experience Center. This collection, which was fully processed in 2017, consists of a number of video cassette tapes and DVDs from the KBVR television studio. Included along with the video files are a handful of audio files as well; primarily KBVR-FM radio bumpers and audio CDs. But most prominent are the KBVR-TV shows, all created by Oregon State University students through the years. Comedy shows, newscasts, talk shows, short films, game shows…just about anything the creative Beaver could fathom, KBVR aired.
SCARC is pleased to announce today that 241 items, mostly videos, are now freely available online. While this is only a fraction of the whole collection received from KBVR, it does represent a significant release of content that had previously been available by request only. Here now is your guide to this new cache of fascinating and fun video!
SCARC has released forty-one episodes of The Beaver Sports Show, a half-hour long program that featured student hosts across campus reporting on the latest sports news and interviewing notable Beaver athletes, while providing their take on Oregon State’s sports teams. The Beaver Sports Show episodes obtained by SCARC range from the years 2008-2011. One episode of interest, from 2009, highlights a “day-in-the-life” of two Oregon State football wide receivers, Taylor Kavanaugh and James Rodgers, who went on to play for the Atlanta Falcons. The show was anchored by several students, including John Hendricks, Kalena Bell, Rick Stella, and Boon Kruger.
Similar to The Beaver Sports Show, KBVR-TV produced KBVR News. This was a thirty-minute nightly news program that detailed happenings around campus including student events, Corvallis and world news, and sports highlights. All of the segments were anchored and produced by students, notably Spencer Smallwood, Kelsey Gill, Mike Card and Marcus Collins. The clips date from 2004 through fall 2011.
Continuing the theme of news programs, Blonde Bombshells on the Hour is also presented in SCARC’s KBVR release. Blonde Bombshells on the Hour was a KBVR TV show that announced the latest music news from hosts, Camille Field and Elle McCracken, as well as Maya Holmes and Brittany Wooten. All of the anchors in this 2011 show shared the same hair color: blonde! Back to the Theatre was a 2010 show preceding Blonde Bombshells, with a somewhat similar theme: movies. Movie news and movie reviews were discussed on this talk show, six episodes of which are available online. The show was hosted by students Mike Card, Kelsey Gill, and Jay Lee, and in one episode of prominence, hosted special guest, OSU Distinguished Professor of Film Studies Jon Lewis.
Letting your voice be heard was a popular trend among students creating programming for KBVR-TV, and a few shows highlight this: Campus View (2008), No Big Whoop (2004-2008), and Questions on the Quad (2011.) These shows, usually airing in the late night, all hosted by two or more students who share their opinions on campus issues and encourage viewers to call in and either ask their own questions or share their own views. They typically focus on a guest who can speak to a topic the hosts are discussing in the episode. Questions on the Quad focused on student hosts roaming around the Memorial Union Quad, interviewing students on various topics. The show Open World (2008) shined a spotlight on international students discussing different aspects of their culture: geography, family dynamics, and the differences they’ve experienced since becoming an international student. SCARC has released three episodes of this show, hosting students from Africa, Japan, and Vietnam. Similar in style to Open World is Dr. Haydrogen German Vids (2013) which presents fascinating interviews with German instructors on their backgrounds in the German culture and language.
Another popular trend among students was producing their own sitcom, reality show, or game show. The two sitcoms in the collection, Anchors (2012) and The Jota Show (ca. 2000s) stars a large cast of students portraying characters in silly scenarios. Anchors is about a group of college-aged news anchors who constantly find themselves in trouble. The Jota Show is about a group of friends navigating young adult life. The reality shows presented in the collection are Greek Pads (2009), Limited Reality (1999), and Trading Rooms (2007-2008.) Greek Pads is an MTV-style show where the viewer gets a personal tour of just about any Oregon State sorority or fraternity they want to see. Trading Rooms is based off of popular TLC show Trading Spaces, using a similar synopsis with a university influence: two sets of roommates, two designers, twelve hours, and a 250-dollar budget to revamp each other’s dorm rooms. Limited Reality has a similar plot to The Jota Show, but is a reality show about how average people act when they know they are being filmed. SCARC also has several game shows produced for KBVR, all inspired by popular television game shows and starring student contestants: Who Wants to be a Beaver? (2001), Blind Date Oregon State (2002), and the OSU Dating Game (2008-2009). Also in the online collection is one episode of a popular KBVR aerobics show Bodywise (1994) and a Japanese cooking show called Naomi’s Itadakimasu (ca. 1998). Itadakimasu is Japanese for “let’s eat!”
Another common theme KBVR-TV programming through the years has been music-centric shows–if Blonde Bombshells on the Hour and their Music Fusion Fridays weren’t telling enough, Beavers love music. The music-specific collection of videos in the online release are mostly concert footage: “The Meow Meow Show,” Oregon State’s Battle of the Bands, and the Flat Tail Music Festival. “The Meow Meow Show” was a 2004 concert headlined by five punk-rock bands. The University’s Battle of the Bands and Flat Tail Music Festival are annual events where student bands are encouraged to perform. Locals Live is a show that began in 2006, and focuses on local artists performing in front of a small audience. The show still runs on KBVR today. The online release also includes a collection of videos from past events, including “Snow on the Quad,” a winter sports event that took place in the Memorial Union Quad in the middle of May, 2006. The event received news coverage by KGW Channel 8 News, was so popular that it continued into the subsequent years, before becoming the “Campus Rail Jam Tour” and concluding in 2011.
Also included is a large collection of short films produced by New Media Communications students from the 2000s to 2010s, including several produced by student Kevin England. Among these are several short films produced specifically by New Media Communications 383 students, as well as a full-length student film, Spade on the River, which is about a young, by-the-book man becoming roommates with the kind of guy he’d been warned about. The short films collection displays the work of talented young students who shared a love for storytelling through this new medium.
This collection of items from the KBVR television and radio stations display the kind of passion that is prominent among Beavers. Whether it’s a passion for music, sharing their views, making their audience laugh, or even taking their own spin on a popular TV show, Beavers are creative, and they know how to show it. The 241 video and audio clips presented in this collection will be an excellent source of inspiration for future Beavers in this regard. Not only that, but the clips are a source for historical inquiry, including news stories documenting past events and campus happenings, and sports coverage of past match-ups. This collection will also provide a nostalgic way to look back on projects produced by previous Beavers–whether they produced, anchored, starred in, or filmed a KBVR production, their memories are now available. It is no doubt that these videos will continue to be a source of past university events, humor, and inspiration for years to come.
This post was contributed by Student Archivist Katy Roach, a history major with the goal pursue a career in the archives.