Clear Channel is paying Bob and Cheryl Frisch $11 million for their four-station group, based in Lebanon. Heritage news-talker WTSL (1400 Hanover) is the oldest station in the group, accompanied by hot AC WGXL (92.3 Hanover), classic rock WVRR (101.7 Newport), and ratings-leading country "Kix," WXXK (100.5 Lebanon).
The usual "no staff or format changes are planned" line accompanies the sale, but rumors are already flying about the possibility of Clear Channel's news-talk WGIR Manchester and rocker WGIR-FM Manchester providing programming to WTSL and WVRR an hour away. Stay tuned...
Vox launched another "new" station in the Green Mountain State this week, moving WWFY (100.9) from a little class A in Middlebury to a big signal licensed to Berlin. Now known as "Froggy 100.9, Jumpin' Country," WWFY is targeting the Barre-Montpelier area. Jim Severance is the PD (and afternoon guy), with Steve Boswell from Waterbury's WDEV doing mornings as "J.D. Green," Michelle Drury middays as "Mickey Hopper," the syndicated Lia show in evenings, and Tim Martin overnight as "Tad Pole." Cute...real cute.
Also in Worcester, Jay Bailey moves from Citadel's WORC-FM/WXLO to Chowder's WORC(AM) and WGFP as program director.
Aurora's already strong in the southern part of the valley, with nine stations stretching from Bridgeport into Westchester County. The Crystal purchase adds nine more signals in the northern part of the valley, from Middletown and Poughkeepsie up to Kingston. They are:
This sale, combined with Clear Channel's purchases in the valley earlier in the year (NERW 5/6/2000), mean that just about every major signal between Westchester and Albany will end the year under new ownership.
So where's that other shoe? So far, there have been none of the rumored format and personnel changes (with the exception of Joe Daily moving from WBNR Beacon/WLNA Peekskill to the new Clear Channel cluster; his last morning show on WBNR/WLNA was last week), but we'll be here to keep track of whatever happens as these deals all close and the inevitable transitions take place.
Happy anniversary to WRIP (97.9 Windham), which will turn one year old next weekend. (Those within listening range just might want to tune in on Saturday night 10/21...you just never know who might turn up on the air there for a few minutes!)
Our Albany bureau chief, Gavin Burt, checks in to let us know WMVI (1160 Mechanicville) has indeed flipped to a 60s AC format as "Sunny 1160," though he reports the signal still needs some work in the south end of the market. "Sunny" joins "Star" (WQAR 101.3 Stillwater) and "Moon" (WUAM 900 Saratoga Springs/WVKZ 1240 Schenectady) in Ernie Anastos' little constellation of stations around the Capital District.
WTRY (980 Troy) has officially become WOFX ("Fox Sports"), which means that Cincinnati's WOFX (92.5) becomes WOFX-FM -- but it's all in the Clear Channel family, anyway.
Just north of Albany, the WBZA calls (long heard on 1230 Glens Falls, now WMML) have disappeared from the 1410 South Glens Falls facility where they'd been living. That station is now WENU(AM), simulcasting standards from WENU-FM (101.7 Hudson Falls) and prompting speculation of a format change to come on the FM side.
Yet another petition to deny has been filed against Syracuse Community Radio, this time against the W208AQ Marcellus translator that holds a CP for 89.5. We're also hearing rumors that SCR's programming, which can't actually be heard at its Syracuse studio, is showing up there anyway on an unlicensed 90.7 signal. Hmmm...sounds like a NERW-mobile stop is in order?
Up north, St. Lawrence University's WSLU (89.5 Canton) has been granted a translator on 89.3 in Speculator. W207BP will be the calls for the new signal in the picturesque tiny Adirondack Mountain hamlet.
Down in Olean, we hear WOEN (1360) will dump talk for a soft AC format sometime this fall.
Speaking of Canada, it's the latest expansion ground for the Upstate New York Radio Archives. Visit now and check out our brand-new radio dials for Toronto-Hamilton, Peterborough, Belleville-Cobourg, Kingston, and Ottawa -- with many more to come!
Back next week with much more...see you then.
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