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Launched December 1, 2000 (2000-12-01)
Owned by Rural Media Group
Picture format 1080i (HDTV)
480i (SDTV)
Slogan Rural America's Most Important Network
Country United States
Language English
Broadcast area Nationwide
Headquarters Omaha, Nebraska
Sister channel(s) FamilyNet
Website www.rfdtv.com
Selective TV Inc.
(Alexandria, MN)
K34AF-D (channel 34)
SW CO TV Translator Assoc.
(Cortez, CO)
K22CU-D (channel 22.3)
DirecTV Channel 345 (SD only)
Dish Network Channel 231 (HD/SD)
C-Band - H2H/4DTV AMC 18 - Channel 226
C-Band - Free-To-Air AMC-1 Freq: 3915 SR: 4410 FEC: 2/3 QPSK
Available on other U.S. cable systems Consult your local cable provider for channel availability
AT&T U-verse Channel 568 (SD)
Verizon FiOS Channel 247 (SD only)
will be removed on January 31, 2016
Sky Angel Channel 333 (SD only)

RFD-TV is an American digital cable and satellite television channel that is owned by Rural Media Group. The channel features programming devoted to rural issues, concerns and interests. The channel's name is a reference to Rural Free Delivery, the name for the United States Postal Service's system of delivering mail directly to rural patrons. Production and uplinking facilities for RFD-TV are located at Northstar Studios in Nashville, Tennessee, while the channel's corporate and national sales office are based in Omaha, Nebraska.

As of February 2015, RFD-TV is available to approximately 47.3 million pay television households (40.7% of households with television) in the United States.[1] It is currently carried by satellite providers Dish Network and DirecTV, as well as through cable providers such as Mediacom, Charter Communications, Cox Communications, Time Warner Cable and Armstrong.[2][3] It is not available in most Comcast markets; Comcast controversially dropped the channel in many of its Western markets in favor of Al Jazeera America in 2013.[4]


The channel was launched on December 1, 2000. Since that point, the network has expanded its brand further; the channel sponsored a new theater that opened in Branson, Missouri in early 2007, called RFD-TV The Theater (housed in the former venue of comedian Ray Stevens). RFD-TV's programming is similar in format to that of The Nashville Network (which was eventually replaced by Spike, before relaunching as a digital multicast channel in 2012, which has since rebranded as Heartland). An international version of the channel called Rural TV launched on March 2, 2009 in the United Kingdom.

Much of the programming of RFD-TV is focused on the culture of farming and agriculture, as well as the culture of the Great Plains of North America and the agriculture associated with that area. For many years, the station did not air infomercials, instead supplementing its advertising revenue with the sales of a company magazine and other merchandise (the infomercial ban has since been lifted, with infomercials now airing on the network during weekend overnight hours). The network also restricts its advertising and programming to products, advertisements, and shows fit to be seen by a family audience; products such as erectile dysfunction medications and male enhancement products are not permitted to be shown on RFD-TV.[5] The network does feature traditional commercial advertising and holds occasional special phone-in forums sponsored by organizations such as Monsanto (for its RoundUp product line), John Deere, and the Medicare program, though the sponsorship of each program is clearly disclaimed in programming listings and disclaimers and hosts do not have interests in the products.

At least two stations broadcast RFD-TV on broadcast television: Selective TV, Inc. broadcasts RFD-TV in the Alexandria, Minnesota television market as part of a slate of cable-to-air channels, on channel 34. K22CU-D in Cortez, Colorado, which is part of a similar slate of channels, broadcasts RFD-TV on its 22.3 digital subchannel. For a time in the early 2010s, RFD-TV also offered its programming via internet subscriptions.


RFD-HD is a high definition feed of RFD-TV that broadcasts in the 1080i resolution format. Instead of simulcasting RFD-TV, the HD feed maintains its own independent programming schedule. The channel first began broadcasting in high definition in the fall of 2007.[6]


Imus in the Morning

When Don Imus returned to radio in late 2007, following his firing by WFAN radio in New York City after being accused of allegedly making misogynistic and racially insensitive comments about African American players on the Rutgers University college basketball team, Imus had also struck a deal to simulcast Imus in the Morning on RFD-TV. The program was broadcast on the channel from 6 to 9 a.m. Eastern Time on weekdays, along with a primetime telecast of the program on its high definition simulcast channel RFD-HD. During much of the show's run, a news ticker was shown with the day's news, similar to that featuring when Imus in the Morning was simulcast on MSNBC. The video simulcast of the program ended its run on RFD-TV on August 28, 2009, and moved to Fox Business Network several weeks later.[7]

The Big Joe Polka Show

One of the very first programs to be aired on RFD-TV was "The Big Joe Polka Show", a polka and dance variety program hosted by Omaha resident Joseph "Big Joe" Siedlik, which continued to be popular among the network's estimated (approximately) 40 million+ available households until it ended its run on January 1, 2011. In 2010, litigation commenced between RFD-TV and The Big Joe Polka Show's creators/producers of Polka Cassettes of Nebraska, involving several lawsuits and countersuits (mostly over a contractual dispute). RFD-TV contends that it had an option to air the program until December 31, 2010, while Polka Cassettes of Nebraska contends that the show was being aired against their wishes, and after cessation of the effectiveness of the previous contract, which expired on December 31, 2009. In August 2010, a multi-million dollar "slander and defamation" suit was brought against Polka Cassettes of Nebraska by RFD-TV.[8] In 2011, the court granted the defendants' motion for summary judgment and dismissed RFD-TV's lawsuit as being without merit. [9] In January, 2015, Joseph "Big Joe" Siedlik died. [10] [11] [12]

The show was replaced by "The RFD-TV Polka Fest" on January 5, 2011, and aired during the same timeslots. RFD-TV Polka Fest was later replaced by Mollie B Polka Party, hosted by Mollie Busta in July 2011. Wednesday afternoons, starting in September 2015 will feature selected reruns of the Big Joe Polka Show under the name "Big Joe Polka Classics."

Other programs added in Winter 2007-08 included a revival of Crook & Chase (which will returned TNN upon its relaunch in 2012) and Bluegrass & Backroads.[13]

Current programming

Former programming

The following programs were aired on RFD-TV at one point, but are no longer listed on the official website.

  • UK Extension (Agriculture)
  • Richard Winters (Equine)
  • Lynn Palm (Equine)
  • Richard Shrake (Equine)
  • Monty Roberts (Equine)
  • RV Today (Rural Lifestyle)
  • Turnin' To Country (Travel / Lifestyle)
  • Country Carnival
  • Showcase Jubilee
  • Imus in the Morning (Entertainment)
  • Live from Daryl's House (Music and entertainment)


External links