Meeting Christina Park

In 2007, Christina Park joined the Fox5 News team in New York. When she started anchoring the Good Day Wake Up and First Editions is when I first found what a gem she was early in the morning to start the day. Her personalilty, sense of humor and professional abilities had me hooked. I went so far as to look her up on the internet and that is how I found ReporterCaps, which is where TvNewsCaps and HDNC were sort of born out of. I found her original cap thread and many of her fans from her CNN days bemoaning the lack of caps since she had moved on. I had the equipment to provide the screencaps and posted a few, thinking that was really all I was ever going to do. But that was only the beginning, obviously.

I had interacted with Christina on her old Fox5 Blog, even earning an on-air shoutout one day during Good Day New York. I thought nothing could top that. I was wrong. Shortly after HDNC was launched, Christina found me on there and then subsequently on Twitter when Charlie [Founder of Hi-Def News Caps] re-posted his trip to 30 Rock for NBC’s Today show. A plan was hatched that I could come to the Fox5 Studios for a quick tour and a couple of quick pics, too. At first I was skeptical…. and nervous. Not nervous about having this opportunity, but Christina’s and others impressions of me….. I know and understand that there is a very borderline creepiness, almost stalkerish-ness stigma to our small niche of the internet. That is why I liked and embrace the mission of HDNC – I don’t need to show what other sites show to express my appreciation. Skepticism was allayed after a few correspondences and I was looking forward to the tour.

I finally found time to visit the city and to meet Christina in person when my brother and I traveled into the city to visit the Intrepid Museum and also Yankee Stadium. And the weather was fantastic, too! I arrived at the Fox Television Center at 6:30, signed in under the watchful eye of security (one of them was quite imposing). Christina came down, did a quick introduction and brought me and my brother upstairs to the studio. At first I wasn’t nervous, but on the elevator ride up, it started to set in and I was probably babbling when I spoke – if I spoke at all for the first few minutes while I took in the set. There were oh, maybe 5million lights suspended from the ceiling of the studio and it was dark-ish. I saw the different sets such as the weather authority station (also traffic), the greenscreen that Mike Woods, Craig Allen (who I said “hi” to while getitng off the elevator and he was getting on) and Ines get to have fun with, the set with guest seats for interviews (I didn’t see any table tonight! – ok, I can be creepy), and finally the news set, where Christina allows other anchors to share her chair and desk (Ernie Anastos, Dari Alexander, Greg Kelly, Rosanna Scotto, poor poor Reid Lamberty, Heather Nauert and uber-anchor-sub extraordinaire Lisa Murphy). We got to see the teleprompters that they use at the news set and the greenscreen area, along with a quick demonstration. I had planned on getting some pics of the insides (though caps show them already!), but that was while I was still in my new found nervousness state. Maybe if one of those teleprompters had been set up for me, I could have spoken more.

We walked around the studio abit, when Christina saw one of her co-workers who stopped to take the time to shoot a couple pics for us. Unfortunately, the studio ones came out too dark, or blownout from the flash. And in my nervousness, I completely forgot that I had my focus set for landscape from my NYY Stadium visit so we couldn’t get any good ones out of the studio directly (and besides, the imposing Security Guard had told me NOT to use my camera!!). I said, yeah, of course I set it up to have camera malfunctions just so I could stand next to Christina a few extra times for the shot. Christina suggested we go down to the lobby where the lighting was better (and guess what, the imposing Security Guard was right outside the studio… hmmmmmm). We saw the wall where guests of the studio have signed their names and some sayings…. Chuck Norris was on there! LOL. While riding the elevator back down, we stopped at a floor where gettinga picture would work perfectly, right in front of a Fox5 sign (picture below). My brother took the shot and it came out quite nice. As we boarded the elevator to go back down, Andy Adler joined the elevator ride. It is her last couple of days at Fox5 before she moves out to Los Angeles and she seemed genuinely pleased to meet us – we found out that Christina told her that “The SlashAsterisk” was coming to the studio and that Christina found out about Andy’s move to LA via the TvNewCaps message board!

We got to the lobby, where we found the imposing Security Guard again. I asked Andy if she would let me get a quick picture of her and she agreed (yay!). Andy apologized for not being all dolled up. Christina offered to take the picture for us and I fumbled trying to get the correct lighting setting (says something for using auto, doesn’t it?). That picture is below too, cropped though since I was unhappy with part of the image. Who knew I had man-boobs? I let Andy know (I think)
that NY was going to miss her and wished her well in LA before she made her way out. We said our goodbyes to Christina shortly thereafter, as well, and made our way back to Grand Central for the trip home.

Christina took the time to say Hello to everyone she saw in the building, and by their name. I found that to be a nice touch, and indicative of the real person that sits in front of the camera. She exudes warmth, kindness and honesty. I agree with Andy Adlers opinion of Christina, which Andy told my brother and I as we made our way to the lobby “Christina is an even nicer person in person than when she is on the air”. Yes, she certainly is. In case you were wondering, one of the charities that I know she is interested in is Feast for Famous Faces, stop by and check it out if you have a moment.

I cannot begin to express the appreciation I have for Christina for allowing me what I’m sure very few fans ever get to experience what I was able to experience last night. I kept my babbling pretty much in check and didn’t come across as too creepy, I think. Mission Accomplished.
Things that I had wanted to ask but forgot or was a bit too nervous:
1) If she’d do a quick HDNC promo video with me (uh, nerves and that imposing security guard thing). Figured it wouldn’t hurt to ask, but I chickened out.
2) Why she didn’t wear that “dregs of an ashtray” dress for the tour??? I 100% liked what she was wearing last night.

Things I did find out while there:
1) Christina drives to work – which had my brother in disbelief. (No we didn’t get her exact address)
2) She was called in early that day because of possible NY Governor news. In fact, she had relieved Lisa Murphy earlier since Lisa had been in for coverage, just in case….. wow,and even though I do like all of the Fox5 anchors and reporters, it was almost a perfect trifecta of my favorite Fox5 people.
3) Yes, the rock on her finger is the size of a baseball. Whomever he is, he is a lucky man and the ring sure makes it seem like he knows it.
The Anchors and reporters know about our little niche on the internet. I really am a fan, maybe with slight voyueristic tendencies when it comes to the news, and I appreciate and respect what these women (and begrudgingly men) are doing, and which is something that I could not do in in front of tens and hundreds of thousands of viewers LIVE. Its a skill and obviously a passion.

So, I want to say to Christina, once again, Thanks for a fantastic tour of the studio. It was eye-opening to see those behind the scenes things and the big picture of the studio in general. And of course, for the opportunity to meet my favorite
anchor in person. That was an incredible experience for me… and my brother, too.

All in all, it was a good good night – Slash

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Oh, and Christina, when you read this, You Rock!

Next time, I’ll bring the cheap point-n-shoot camera!