Dan Gross: Dawn Stensland's back on TV

Dawn Stensland , Phil Andrews (left) and Don Tollefson will all soon begin hosting weekly shows on WMCN-TV.
Dawn Stensland , Phil Andrews (left) and Don Tollefson will all soon begin hosting weekly shows on WMCN-TV.
Posted: September 10, 2012

DAWN STENSLAND will soon return to local television, where she hasn't been seen on-air since leaving Fox 29 in 2009.

The longtime anchor will host a new show for WMCN 44 tentatively titled "A New View," a live weekly program that Stensland says will "delve into the issues - not politics, not sports, but it could be about health, social issues, education."

"I want to talk about your life, and hopefully people will walk away from the show thinking they learned something," Stensland told us Sunday. "It will be topical, but in-depth.

"The neat part of this is the freedom to talk about what's going on in people's lives," Stensland said.

During her time off, she has been involved with charities, such as the Montgomery County Police Athletic League, and cared for sons David, who turns 6 Friday, and Michael, 8.

Stensland isn't the only familiar face with a new weekly show coming to WMCN. Former Fox 29 sports director Don Tollefson will feature inspiring people from the area on his show "Tolly's Awesome Friends," while former 6ABC sports guy Phil Andrews hosts "Philly Sports Spotlight," with behind-the-scenes feature stories on local athletes and teams.

Talk Radio 1210 AM's Dom Giordano will launch "Dom Time," a weekly show on which Giordano will opine on the news of the week. Each of these new programs is expected to launch in early to mid-October.

Last year, WMCN began its original programming with "Propper Hockey" (with former Flyer Brian Propp and Lou Tilley, whom Stensland worked with a while back at CBS 3 and with whom she is also happy to be working again).

WMCN president of broadcasting Jon Gorchow, a CN 8 veteran, enlisted Tess McGrath Brown, a former CN 8 producer, to help launch the new roster of original programming.

WMCN is available on Comcast, Verizon Fios, DirecTV, Dish and satellite. Check WMCN.TV for programming info.

Local actor keeping busy

Center City native actor Christian Meoli, who just booked supporting roles in the upcoming "Dirty People" and "Treachery," has been busy with his company Voltaire Media. Voltaire represents independent films such as "Deer Crossing," which Christian Grillo shot in town last year with "Ghostbusters" actor Ernie Hudson. The film is slated for a Sept. 25 release through Osiris Entertainment. Meoli recently opened a movie theater, Arena Screen, in Hollywood.

Ciarrocchi joins Sprout

CBS 3 anchor Pat Ciarrocchi isn't the only Ciarrocchi now on television in the area. No, that doesn't mean Chickie's & Pete's owner Pete Ciarrocchi got a show (although it would be entertaining), but Pat's niece, Carly Ciarrocchi, is the new host of Sprout's cable morning show for preschoolers, "The Sunny Side Up Show," which airs from 9 a.m. to noon weekdays.

Charitably minded

Sixers assistant coach Aaron McKie, Eagles broadcaster Mike Quick, former Flyers Don Saleski and Chris Therien and Fox 29 "Good Day" host Mike Jerrick will take part in the Zarwin Baum Celebrity Casino Night on Sept. 27 at the law firm's office at 1818 Market St. Eagles longsnapper and magician Jon Dorenbos, District Attorney Seth Williams, comedian Joe Conklin, Tilley (now on WMCN-TV), Comcast Network host Arthur Fennell and CBS 3/CW Philly personality Kharisma McIlwaine will also take part in the charity event to benefit the Easter Seals of Southeastern Pennsylvania.

Roulette, blackjack, craps and Texas hold 'em poker will be among the festivities. Tickets are $50 at sepa.easterseals.com or $60 at the door, and include $250 in casino chips. All ticket and chips sales go toward the Easter Seals.

For more info, contact Kelly Malloy at events@zarwin.com or call 215-569-2800.

* The "Big Lebowski"-inspired event The Dude Hates Cancer takes place Saturday at North Bowl (909 N. 2nd). The seventh annual event is a benefit for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) of Eastern Pennsylvania.

Timothy Maxwell, a big fan of the classic Coen Brothers film, started the charity event after his father was diagnosed with leukemia. While planning the first event, Maxwell learned his mother had multiple myeloma, also a blood cancer.

The Dude Hates Cancer has now spread to other cities and has raised more than $250,000 since it began.

Registration is $280 for teams of six to 10, including bowling, shoe rental, T-shirts and more. For more info, or to register, visit thedudehatescancer.com or call 800-482-2873.

Contact Dan Gross at grossd@phillynews.com or 215-854-5963. Follow him on Twitter @PhillyGossip or at Facebook.com/dangrossphillygossip. Read his blog at PhillyGossip.com, or for his latest columns see philly.com/dangross.

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