Not much else to report from New Hampshire this week, except for this tidbit from NERW research director Garrett Wollman: There is indeed no valid license at the moment for Harvest Broadcasting's WWNH (1340) Madbury NH. The construction permit for the station was cancelled on October 6, 1992, and the FCC database shows a reconsideration is pending. WWNH was nonetheless on the air the last time NERW was up that way a few months ago.
New call letters are in place at ARS's modern AC "The Zone" (94.1 Brighton-Rochester). WZNE replaced WAQB last Friday. Over in Buffalo, meanwhile, "Alice at 92.9" is still hiding the old WSJZ calls at the top of each hour.
There'll be a new AM signal on the air at night in the Rochester area soon. We've now seen it with our own eyes; Bob Savage has built three additional towers at the Avon NY transmitter site of his WYSL, as he gets ready to move the station from a 500-watt daytimer on 1030 to a fulltime facility on 1040, with 2500 watts by day and 500 at night. We'll see whether he beats another new AM to the air; Canandaigua's WCGR has built a new three-tower facility for its 1310 kHz construction permit, replacing the daytimer on 1550 kHz.
Rochester's public broadcaster will have to try again to put up an FM service for western Monroe County. WXXI's application for 90.9 MHz in Spencerport NY has been dismissed by the FCC.
Speaking of new stations, there's word from way up North that WYUL (94.7 Chateauguay) is about to hit the airwaves. Owner Tim Martz is no stranger to the Canadian border -- he runs WQHR and WBPW in Presque Isle ME. His 50kW directional signal from Lyon Mountain, the WPTZ-TV (Channel 5) transmitter site near Plattsburgh, will head straight for Montreal, and as Garrett notes, the "YUL" in the calls is also the airport code for Montreal. Word has it that Martz is hiring bilingual DJs for the new station.
The calls that won't die have returned yet again to Long Island. WDRE(FM) is the new set of calls on 98.5 Westhampton NY, ex-WLRI, ex-WLIR-FM, ex-WMRW. It's still simulcasting 92.7 Garden City, now WLIR-FM again after a time with the WDRE calls itself. Meanwhile, the most recent WDRE, 103.9 Jenkintown-Philadelphia, is now WPHI, "Philly 103.9." Plus ça change...
WCME (96.7 Boothbay Harbor) is reportedly running very limited hours. Several NERW correspondents in the area have checked in to note that WCME is signing off around 11 o'clock most mornings, and has been off the air completely some days. We'll keep watching this odd situation.
There's not much radio left in the DUNKIRK/FREDONIA market, south of Buffalo on Lake Erie. WDOE (1410) was doing satellite oldies, WCQA (96.5) was satellite country (albeit with a live remote on Saturday), and WCVF (88.9) at Fredonia State College was missing in action. Good thing the Buffalo and Erie stations all blast in...
We found some neat viewing in the JAMESTOWN market, where WJTN (1240) and WWSE (93.3) share a very impressive building at the base of the WWSE tower. "SE93" is the 50kW AC giant in town; we found them at a Saturday remote opening a new supermarket. Across town, WKSN "Kissin' Oldies 1340" and WHUG "Huggin' Country 101.7" are co-owned. Huggin' was live and local, Kissin' was satellite (as was the talk on WJTN most of the weekend). From just across the border, Jamestown can also hear one of the last beautiful-music FMs in existence, Warren PA's WRRN (92.3), along with its sister AM, AC WNAE (1310). Russell PA's WRLP (103.1, "The Point") is another Jamestown rimshotter. WKSN, by the way, still has a rooftop transmitter. Noncomm relayers WUBJ (88.1, WBFO 88.7 Buffalo, news/jazz), WNJA (89.7, WNED-FM 94.5 Buffalo, classical), and WCOT (90.9, Family Life Radio) round out the dial.
Down the road in SALAMANCA and OLEAN, the big gun in town is country WPIG (95.7 Olean), running live from a nifty art deco building on Route 417. AC WMXO (101.5 Olean, "Mix 101.5") was automated all weekend, with nary a legal ID to be heard except during the leased Irish and Polish shows Sunday morning. Salamanca's WQRT (98.3) was satellite rock. On the AM side, WPIG's sister station, WHDL (1450), is satellite oldies; WMXO's sister, WMNS (1360), is business talk and sports; and WQRT's sister, WGGO (1590), is locally-programmed variety. We caught them on a "CD Side Saturday," playing discs from the Beatles, Barbra Streisand, and Frank Zappa with almost no interruption. Noncomms in town are WBFO relay WOLN (91.3) and St. Bonaventure University's WSBU (88.3).
Just over the state line is Bradford PA, where we spent some time enjoying WESB (1490), a little local station that believes in serving the community. The local newscast we heard at 9 o'clock on a Saturday night was one of the most comprehensive we've heard on any small station. Oddly, the sister AM, WBRR (100.1, "Cool 100") was all-satellite, as was rimshotter WQRM-FM Smethport PA (106.3, with a 99.3 Bradford translator, running standards). Looking for live on FM? St. Mary's WKVE (97.5, "the Peak") fills the bill with hot AC...we even caught the owner pulling a weekend airshift!
Moving further east, WELLSVILLE has but two stations, satellite country WLSV (790) and satellite AC WJQZ (103.5).
Heading back north again, only one of ALFRED's two college FMs was on the air. WALF (89.7) at Alfred University was playing rock music, while there was nothing to be heard at SUNY Alfred's WETD (90.9). There's also no sign yet of Robert Pfuntner's construction permit on 101.9, WZKZ (borrowing the heritage calls from Corning NY).
The final stop of the trip was in Hornell NY, where it was all-automated at WLEA (1480, standards) and WCKR (92.1, country). Down the road at Bilbat Radio's WHHO (1320) and WKPQ (105.3), we found NASCAR racing on the AM and live CHR on the 50kw FM, with a very talented teenage DJ by the name of Megan McCormick working the Sunday afternoon shift. The Bilbat folks seem to do a very good job of keeping themselves tied in to the community...and you've gotta love the cartoon logo of a bat with a duck's bill (you can see it yourself at http://www.wkpq.com). We also heard the relatively new 99.3 translator of religious WCIK (103.1 Bath), as well as the new satellite oldies format on Bath's WABH (1380).
And from there, it's back up I-390 to Rochester...