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June 28 & July 5, 2010

Tornado Rips WICC/WEBE

PROGRAM NOTE: NERW will be back with our next regular issue July 12, barring major breaking news over the Independence Day and Canada Day holidays. But never fear: NERW's now on Twitter - follow us @NERadioWatch for breaking news updates while the column's on vacation!

*When a tornado hit the CONNECTICUT coastline Thursday afternoon, its path of destruction took it across both the studio and transmitter site of Cumulus' WICC (600 Bridgeport).

The storm wreaked havoc on downtown Bridgeport, where WICC and sister station WEBE (107.9 Westport) share studio space in an office building on Lafayette Square. The winds picked up an air conditioner from the roof of the building, turning it on its side and ripping a hole in the roof right over the WICC newsroom.

The building was quickly evacuated, leaving both stations running on makeshift automation all through Thursday night and into Friday morning - but for WICC, that was just the beginning of its technical challenges. (Thanks to Danny Lyons for the pictures!)

The WICC transmitter site at Pleasure Beach sits on an offshore island that used to be connected to the mainland by a short bridge - but since a fire damaged the bridge in the 1990s, the site has been reachable only by boat or by walking across the water at low tide, which proved to be a big problem when the power went out and the station's generator began to malfunction.

WICC ended up being off the air from the time the storm hit until early Saturday morning, save for a brief period Thursday evening when it was on the air (with music-only automation) on the generator; the good news, at least, is that by Friday morning drivetime the studios were once again accessible, allowing WEBE's morning show to air on schedule and WICC to provide at least a webcast.

Meanwhile, other stations in the market stepped up to the plate to cover the storm; we heard good things from our ears in the market about the coverage on WEZN-FM (99.9 Bridgeport), as well as from News 12 Connecticut and from New York's WCBS (880).

*Moving to TV: Waterbury-licensed channel 20 has been WTXX since 1982, when the former WATR-TV shed its NBC affiliation, went independent and moved its transmitter to a new site that brought its signal into most of the Hartford-New Haven market. Tribune, which operates channel 20 as a duopoly with Fox affiliate WTIC-TV (Channel 61), recently rebranded the CW affiliate as "The CT" (complete with a widely-derided new logo, at left) and now it has new calls to match, becoming WCCT-TV.

(The nitpickers will note that there's also an unrelated WCCT-FM, the high school station at Cape Cod Regional Technical High School in Harwich, Mass.)

*Radio People on the Move: Slater is out at WCCC-FM (106.9 Hartford), with overnight guy "Craig the Pornstar" moving into his former evening slot.

And there's a particularly poignant obituary to offer this week: Michael Collins was widely respected in southern Connecticut, not only for his work as a broadcaster at the Associated Press and at stations including WQUN (1220 Hamden) and WSNG (610 Torrington), but for his encyclopedic knowledge of media history and his tireless advocacy for the LGBT media community.

Collins put his media experience (including stints as general manager of both WSNG and WQUN) to good use as an educator, teaching at WQUN's parent institution, Quinnipiac University.

Collins had been suffering health problems in recent months; on Thursday, police responding to a call at his home in Orange, Connecticut found him dead.

No funeral arrangements have been announced.


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*The NEW YORK State Broadcasters Association inducts some big names into its Hall of Fame tonight at its 48th annual executive conference in Bolton Landing. This year's class includes two living inductees: WHAM-TV's veteran anchor Don Alhart (44 years and counting at the same station!) and Jim Roselle of WJTN (1240) in Jamestown, who has even Alhart beat - he's been with WJTN for 57 years!

From the roster of broadcasters we've lost, the NYSBA is inducting New York rock radio legend Scott Muni, Dan DeNicola of Albany's WRGB and New York's Percy Sutton, longtime owner of WLIB and WBLS - a worthy lineup, indeed.

Speaking of WHAM-TV, it appears that the Newport-owned ABC affiliate is about to become the first station in the region to produce local news in HD. Alhart and the rest of the station's anchors moved from the old news set to the newsroom last week; there's a promo now running featuring construction workers surrounding the station's logo and promising "something big" this summer - and the station's photographers have been spotted in the field with spiffy new HD cameras.

*New York's WQXR (105.9 Newark NJ) is getting some extra management attention from its parent organization, WNYC, which has named a vice president specifically in charge of the classical station it acquired. Graham Parker moves over from the executive director's chair at the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra to take the helm at WQXR. (The Times reports that WNYC is about two-thirds of the way to completing its $15 million fund drive to pay for the WQXR acquisition.)

Up north, WSLP (93.3 Saranac Lake) is ramping up its local news coverage, hiring Sandy Caligiore as news director. Caligiore, who starts his new job Friday, was news director at WNBZ (1240 Saranac Lake) in the seventies and eighties, later working at Potsdam's WPDM/WSNN and at WLPW/WIRD in Lake Placid. Most recently, Caligiore was handling PR for the state's Olympic Regional Development Authority.

More Radio People on the Move: in the Elmira market, Kyle McCurry's leaving WNGZ (104.9 Montour Falls) at the end of July to go back to school - and that leaves an opening for a PD and afternoon jock. Down I-86 in Olean, Eric Medler (late of Wyoming and Montana) is the new PD and morning man at Pembrook Pines' WMXO (101.5), where he replaces Tom Power. And in Poughkeepsie, Michael Bennett moves up from overnights to evenings at WSPK (104.7), where he replaces Brian Stylez. Bennett is also serving as music coordinator for K104.

*It was a quiet week in MASSACHUSETTS - nowhere more so than in the studios of CBS Radio's WODS (103.3 Boston), where a technical glitch silenced the morning show for more than an hour on Friday.

There's one very happy note from the Bay State: broadcast historian, educator, programmer and good friend of this column Donna Halper has been in the spotlight of late for one of her first big achievements in radio. She was music director at Cleveland's WMMS (100.7) in the early seventies when an LP from an unknown Canadian band crossed her desk - and if you've enjoyed the music of Rush in the decades since then, you have Donna Halper to thank for bringing Geddy Lee and company to a wider U.S. audience.

With the release of (and her interview in) the new documentary "Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage," Donna's been in high demand for appearances around Boston to talk about her experiences with the band - and over the weekend, she was in Hollywood to speak at the dedication of Rush's star on the Walk of Fame.

*On the NEW HAMPSHIRE seacoast, community LPFM station WSCA-LP (106.1 Portsmouth) is getting a full-power license. Seacoast Arts and Cultural Alliance now holds a construction permit for a 300-watt vertical-only signal on 89.5 licensed to nearby Dover; once it's on the air, the LPFM license will be transferred to a new licensee.

Meanwhile, it looks like a Manchester religious station may be silent for the long term. Knowledge for Life's WLMW (90.7) hasn't filed anything with the FCC, but its signal hasn't been heard for well over a month now, and its antenna has apparently been removed from its tower on Mount Uncanoonuc in Goffstown.

*VERMONT Public Radio is getting ready to bring its classical network service to the Randolph area and to the I-89 corridor through central Vermont. VPR closed on its purchase of WCVR-FM (102.1 Randolph) last week, and it will relaunch the station in early July under new calls WVXR, joining existing full-power VPR Classical signals in the Burlington, Upper Valley and Bennington/Manchester areas.

Meanwhile, a silent commercial signal in the Burlington market is coming back to life. Jeff Loper's Convergence Entertainment and Communications (CEC) has purchased a direct mail firm, Champak Marketing, taking Champak's principals on board as partners in the new CEC Media Group LLC. Later this week, CEC will relaunch WNMR (107.1 Dannemora NY), which had a brief stint earlier this year as a talker helmed by "Corm and the Coach." WNMR's new format will be all-sports as "107.1 the Game," featuring Sporting News Radio network content and a local afternoon show hosted by Rich DeLancey.

CEC is also working on a relaunch of its TV signal across the lake in Saranac Lake, New York. WNMN (Channel 40) has been carrying a feed of the Retro TV programming from sister station WGMU-LP (Channel 39) in Burlington, and it's adding My Network TV on another of its digital subchannels as well.

*Clear Channel is taking one northwest NEW JERSEY station back into the fold. WHCY (106.3 Blairstown) had been spun off, on paper at least, to the Aloha Station Trust to keep Clear Channel under the ownership cap after the company went private. But no buyer emerged for WHCY, or for WTOC (1360 Newton), the other station that went into the trust - and in the meantime, another new station signed on in the region. The addition of WDNJ (88.1 Hopatcong) last year pushed northwest New Jersey into the next category under the ownership cap, allowing Clear Channel to reclaim WHCY from the Aloha trust.

*Radio People on the move in eastern PENNSYLVANIA: WBEN-FM (95.7 Philadelphia) PD John Cook is out, and Greater Media hasn't yet announced a replacement at "Ben FM." Down the street at Clear Channel, Golden Girl is out at WUSL (98.9 Philadelphia), with The Hot Boys shifting their airtime to take up the 10-midnight part of her shift on "Power 99." (They now go on the air at 7, instead of 6.) Down the hall, mix DJ Richie Rich is out at WIOQ (Q102) and WISX (My 106.1) after 18 years with the company.

The Hope Christian Church of Marlton is expanding its radio empire again: it's been granted a construction permit for 315 watts/522' on 91.7 in West Grove, along the US 1 corridor in Chester County. Hope already operates two full-power stations in New Jersey, WVBV (90.5 Medford Lakes) and WWFP (90.5 Brigantine), as well as a slew of translators across New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland.

Out west, Cornerstone TeleVision (WPCB Greensburg/Pittsburgh and WKBS Altoona) has named a replacement for its late chief operating officer, Ron Hembree. The new COO is Paul Bixler, a 30-year veteran of the station and the son of founders Russ and Norma Bixler.


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*CANADA's CHUM Radio was both a buyer and a seller last week, as parent company CTVglobemedia made an investment in the country's biggest market and exited another market where it had only a limited radio presence.

In Toronto, CHUM is buying "Flow 93.5" (CFXJ) from Milestone Radio, whose founder Denham Jolly put the station on the air in 2001 as the first black-owned station in Canada. In 2005, Milestone partnered with CHUM to launch an urban station in Edmonton, Alberta, CHBN (91.7 the Bounce) - and that station, too, was on the sale block last week, as CHUM and Milestone announced that they're selling CHBN to media giant Rogers.

In Toronto, the Flow purchase (assuming it's approved by the CRTC) will give CHUM a third radio outlet alongside top-rated top-40 outlet CHUM-FM (104.5) and AM afterthought CHUM (1050), now a fulltime relay of CTV's CP24 all-news TV channel.

CTV/CHUM is also getting out of the radio business in London, Ontario, where it's selling "Bob FM 102.3" (CHST) to Rogers. In a market dominated by larger Corus and Astral clusters, 102.3 has been flying solo since 2000, when the station signed on under original owner CHUM Ltd. as "Star 102.3."

The sale separates Bob FM from its TV sister station, CFPL-TV (Channel 10), which is also believed to be for sale to the right buyer.

No sale prices have been announced yet for any of last week's CHUM deals.

*Speaking of Rogers, it was in the headlines last week after blowing out a big chunk of the airstaff at its Toronto all-sports outlet, CJCL (FAN 590). Morning hosts Don Landry and Gord Stellick and newsman Rick Ralph are out, as well as the shows that followed them, Mike Hogan in late mornings, Daren Millard's noon hockey show and Jack Armstrong in middays.

Replacing the hockey show is Greg Brady, who joins FAN 590 from its sports competitor, CFMJ (AM 640), where he'd been co-hosting with Bill Watters. Brady's on 590 from 1-4 PM, followed by the one remaining piece of the daytime schedule, Bob McCown's Prime Time Sports.

*In Brantford, the oldies disappeared last Friday from CKPC (1380), as new owner Evanov flipped the station to "News Country 1380," featuring (who'd have guessed?) a mixture of news and country music. The news comes in the form of a morning all-news block, while the country is heard the rest of the day. Evanov recently flipped CKPC-FM (92.1 Brantford) to its "Jewel" soft AC format.

East of Kingston, My Broadcasting Corp. is adding another "My FM" outlet to its roster of small-town signals around Ontario. Its new signal in Gananoque, along the St. Lawrence Seaway, will operate with 1490 watts on 99.9, with a format that mixes country, oldies and AC music.

From the NERW Archives

(Yup, we've been doing this a long time now, and so we're digging back into the vaults for a look at what NERW was covering one, five, ten and - where available - fifteen years ago this week, or thereabouts. Note that the column appeared on an erratic schedule in its earliest years as "New England Radio Watch," and didn't go to a regular weekly schedule until 1997. Thanks to for the idea - and thanks to you, our readers, for the support that's made all these years of NERW possible!)

June 29 & July 6, 2009 -

  • Remember the days when radio was a vital part of the national conversation? When a station like WABC or WIBG or WRKO could cut across demographic boundaries to bring entire communities together with music and personality? The radio industry spends a lot of time wondering where those days went - but for a few days late last week, it regained a bit of that old relevance in the wake of the death of one of radio's biggest stars.
  • At the height of his own career in the eighties, of course, Michael Jackson transcended radio; it can even be argued that the boost his groundbreaking videos gave to MTV in its early years helped the TV network usurp the role that top-40 radio had long played in shaping America's musical tastes. None of that mattered, though, on Thursday evening. As word spread that Jackson had suffered a heart attack - and, not long afterward, of his death at the age of 50 - many radio stations all over the region, and the nation, quickly crossed format lines and dug out old CDs and even LPs as they launched into nonstop hours of Jackson's music.
  • "Many" stations, mind you, and not "all," because the timing of Jackson's death, especially here in the east, pointed up the new reality of radio, circa 2009: when the music and the voicetracks on a radio station were programmed by someone miles away and hours before, it's much harder for that station to rise to the occasion by providing listeners with the music and the information they didn't know they needed ahead of time. (Note the demand for Jackson music in record stores and at online sites - a demand that radio was uniquely positioned to meet, immediately and efficiently.) But our purpose here this week is not to call out the stations that found themselves ill-prepared to react to the breaking news from Los Angeles; instead, we note just some of the ones that rose to the occasion:
  • -In New York City, Jackson's music was all over the dial within minutes of his death. Urban stations, including WBLS (107.5) and WRKS (98.7), went wall-to-wall Jackson through the weekend; classic hits WCBS-FM (101.1) offered several all-Jackson hours on Thursday, followed by several songs an hour thereafter; we're told that even a few of the city's Spanish-language stations were playing Jackson's songs Thursday night.
  • -Boston's WXKS-FM (107.9) and WJMN (94.5) are the descendants of two of the stations that played Jackson's music most heavily in the "Thriller" era, and both were heavy on Jackson's music after his death. So was WODS (103.3), where Barry Scott devoted his weekend "Lost 45s" show entirely to Jackson.
  • -In Philadelphia, most of the FM dial was full of Jackson's music Thursday night, spanning the format spectrum from AC (WISX 106.1) to adult hits (WBEN-FM 95.7) to urban (WUSL 98.9, WDAS-FM 105.3, WRNB 107.9) to oldies (WOGL 98.1).
  • -In Pittsburgh,'s Jason Togyer reports that Jackson music also crossed format lines, though it was oddly absent at young-skewing top-40 competitors WKST-FM (96.1) and WBZW (93.7) and in short supply early on at several of the city's voicetracked FMs. (Little WKHB 620 was live-and-local with nonstop Jackson tunes starting at 7:15 Thursday night, reports PD Clarke Ingram...)
  • -Syracuse's WLTI (105.9) blew out the syndicated Delilah show to go wall-to-wall Jackson, reports, with PD Tom Mitchell and APD Brian Phillips rushing to get the songs loaded into the automation system at the last moment.
  • -Here in Rochester, stations were oddly slow to start playing Jackson's music as the news broke on Thursday, but the spotlight (and the local TV news) was soon firmly focused on locally-owned urban WDKX (103.9). There was no need to go scrambling for songs there; Jackson tunes have been a staple on WDKX from its earliest days 35 years ago, and the station's phone lines were ringing nonstop with remembrances and requests all weekend as WDKX went wall-to-wall Jackson. (Buffalo's WBLK was also wall-to-wall Jackson, at least on Friday.)
  • As your editor observed in a Boston Globe article Saturday, there aren't likely to be many other moments quite like this in radio's future, if only because it's hard to imagine any other artists who crossed rigid format boundaries to appeal to so many listeners for so many years. But for a few days, at least, it was refreshing to hear radio doing what it does best: being a true mass medium in a way that no MP3 player or webcast or cellphone can do. Is it too much to hope that some of that spark might last?
  • In upstate NEW YORK, the Utica market's "River" is changing directions: Mindy Barstein's WXUR (92.7 Herkimer) is segueing from classic rock to active rock, and dropping Don Imus from morning drive in the process. While Imus moves to sister station WNRS (1420 Herkimer), Bill Keeler returns to morning drive on WXUR, with Frank McBride taking over Keeler's afternoon slot, followed by Justin Cortese at night. (And reports that WXUR's transmitter move to Smith Hill in Utica, giving it a class B1 signal that will make it a full-market player, is due to become a reality as early as mid-July.)
  • Another Utica-market FM station received some vindication late last week, as FCC investigators reported they could find no sign of excessive RF radiation around the new tower site of EMF Broadcasting's WOKR (93.5 Remsen) in the town of Floyd, north of Rome. Town officials say they're still trying to get some answers about what's causing the mysterious illnesses in several homes near the tower, which residents blamed on WOKR's April move to the site. Neighbors tell the Utica Observer-Dispatch that they saw workers at the American Tower-owned facility shortly before the FCC's visit, and they remain suspicious.
  • While he achieved fame in New York and later California, Ed McMahon never forgot his roots in the Merrimack Valley of MASSACHUSETTS, and so we remember him this week not only for his many years alongside Johnny and Doc, or for his career as a TV pitchman and host, but also for his earliest years in the business at Lowell's WLLH. McMahon's voice was heard on WLLH doing station IDs in the 1980s, and he returned to Lowell in 1994 to be honored with a live broadcast on WLLH (alongside then-morning host Paul Sullivan) - and with a park bench at Middlesex Community College, too. McMahon died last Tuesday (June 23) at 86.
  • Another obituary overshadowed by the week's big celebrity deaths leads our PENNSYLVANIA news this week: Irv Homer began his talk career by leasing time on WXUR (690/100.3) in Media in the late 1960s, then moved on to WEEZ (1590) in Chester before hitting the big time in 1975 with a slot on WWDB-FM (96.5), where he became a staple of Philadelphia talk radio for a quarter of a century. After WWDB exited the talk format, Homer continued to host a show on suburban WBCB (1490 Levittown-Fairless Hills), where he was still working at the time of his death last week. Homer, 86, suffered a heart attack while speaking at Eastern University Wednesday night. He died shortly afterward at Bryn Mawr Hospital.

June 27, 2005 -

  • The latest chapter in the ongoing saga of one of New England's longest-running unlicensed stations unfolded early last Wednesday morning in Brattleboro, VERMONT, when federal agents entered the unoccupied Main Street studios of Radio Free Brattleboro (or, as they prefer, "rfb") and seized much of the station's equipment, silencing the station's signal at 107.9 and its web stream.
  • The move came amidst what amounts to a turf war among federal officials in the Green Mountain State. In Brattleboro, Judge J. Garvan Murtha has been slowly working through a civil case filed against the station by the FCC, and it appears that the Commission grew tired of waiting for action there. The FCC filed a motion for summary judgment in that case last month, but in the meantime, the assistant U.S. attorney handling the case obtained a warrant Tuesday from a federal magistrate in Burlington to enter the station's offices.
  • Photos posted later that morning on the community website showed the studio missing its control board and other equipment, with scattered wiring and a lone microphone left behind.
  • In Bellows Falls, the Great Falls Community Broadcasting Company put WOOL-LP (100.1) on the air Saturday, providing a community voice to a town whose only licensed full-power signal is a simulcast from White River Junction. Check "Wool Radio" out - they stream, too - at
  • A small NEW HAMPSHIRE AM station is changing hands again, as Bill Sheehan's Balance View LLC files to sell WSNH (900 Nashua) to Absolute Broadcasting LLC, headed by Tom Monaghan, for $925,000. Absolute has been programming the "ESPN 900" sports format on WSNH since last year.
  • As the construction permit for a Down East MAINE FM station approaches expiration, owner Lyle Evans is trying to salvage his WRMO (93.7 Milbridge) in at least a reduced form. WRMO's construction permit was granted July 17, 2002, calling for a class B facility with 50 kW/64 meters. But with the CP set to expire July 17, 2005, Evans is asking the FCC to approve a much smaller WRMO, just to get the station on the air. As a minimum class A facility, WRMO would sign on with 130 watts at 2 meters from the center of Milbridge, just to get on the air before the deadline and to buy some time to build out a more powerful facility.
  • In MASSACHUSETTS, rumor became reality as WRKO (680 Boston) announced a multi-year deal with the Boston Celtics, who'll move over next season from WWZN (1510), their flagship for the past four years. Meanwhile, WRKO and executive producer Rich Carbery have parted ways after several years together; no word yet on his next move.
  • We're now hearing "mid-July" as the projected launch date for ESPN radio on WAMG (890 Dedham) and WLLH (1400 Lowell & Lawrence); new owner J Sports closed on the $9 million purchase from Mega last week, but Mega's Spanish programming continues to run while the new ownership gets its programming ready to roll.
  • In the Catskill Mountains of NEW YORK, a venerable pair of community stations is changing hands, as the Blabey family sells WVOS (1240 Liberty) and WVOS-FM (95.9 Liberty) to Scott Kaniewski's Watermark Broadcasting for $1.7 million. The sale will put the WVOS stations under the same roof as longtime competitor WSUL (98.3 Monticello), which Watermark bought last year; the three are the only commercial stations originating programming in Sullivan County.
  • In New York City, fans of the oldies at WCBS-FM (101.1) aren't going quietly - about 150 of them turned up outside the station's Times Square studios last Tuesday to call for a return to the format.
  • A station sale leads off our PENNSYLVANIA coverage this week, and it's once again in the State College market, where Nick Galli's 2510 group sheds WBLF (970 Bellefonte). The station, formerly a simulcast of talker WRSC (1390 State College) and more recently simulcasting oldies WOWY (97.1 University Park), goes to Magnum Broadcasting, which owns WPHB (1260 Phillipsburg) and WUBZ (105.9 Phillipsburg).
  • And we're delighted to report that the oldest high school station in the country, WHHS Havertown, is back on the air at its new home of 99.9. WHHS was displaced from its spot at 107.9 by the debut of WRNB (107.9 Pennsauken) last year, but with the help of WRNB owner Radio One (and alumnus Steve Hemphill, the engineer who built the WA2XMN transmitter at the Armstrong Tower), it's won special temporary authority from the FCC to get back on the air at 99.9 while it waits for its application for a license at that frequency to be granted.
  • The big news out of CANADA came from Ottawa, where the CRTC is granting four new licenses in the National Capital Region. Newcap, which already has top 40 CIHT ("Hot 89.9"), gets 5.2 kW on 88.5 for a modern rock station. Evanov (aka "CKMW") will put "The Jewel" on the air with 700 watts at 98.5, playing a mix of standards, easy listening and folk that's supposed to be similar to the company's "Foxy" CKDX (88.5) in the Toronto market. Radio Nord (which has CHOT-TV, CFGS-TV and CHLX-FM) gets a French pop-rock/urban station, with transmitters at 96.5 (1750 watts) in Gatineau and 107.5 (250 watts) in Buckingham. And Jack McGaw and Robert Stopells were granted a low-power tourist information station, though they need to find a new frequency. (It's getting to be a crowded dial up there...)

June 30, 2000 -

  • (no issue)

New England Radio Watch, June 22-23, 1995

  • From our "Huh?!??!?" file this week: Wednesday morning (6/21), WCLB 105.7 Framingham-Boston switched calls very WKLB. Nothing has changed with the station's country format, or with the on-air team (though they are running the satellite-delivered "After Midnight" all-night show now). A call to WCL-- er, WKLB late last night produced the response, "We did research that found out people were getting confused by the "C," so we changed it to "K."" Mm-hmmm. My guess is that the confusion was in the ratings diaries, between WCLB and classical WCRB...and maybe even with similar-sounding suburban country WCAV-FM. The official calls, btw, have to be WKLB-FM, since WKLB(AM) is 1290 in Manchester KY.
  • AM 550 in Pawtucket (Providence) RI remains off the air. I last noticed them on the air around May 30, so that means they're coming up on 3 weeks dark. Back Bay Broadcasters (WBNW 590 in Boston, WARA 1320/WWKX 106.3 in the Prov. market) is buying 550 and reportedly plans to change calls from WICE to WPNW,
    simulcasting WBNW's Bloomberg news/biz talk format. WMBR (88.1) in Cambridge was briefly off the air early this week, but returned Tuesday afternoon June 20 from its new directional antenna on the MIT campus. The power increase from 360 to 720 watts will reportedly happen very soon.
  • WUAE 99.7 Wakefield has applied for the WDGE calls, to fit their tagline "The Edge." I have a WUAE legal on tape, so they're welcome to change whenever they'd like :-)
  • Just barely off-topic: WSBK-TV in Boston is ending its 10pm newscast effective August 6. The newscast debuted in 1993, and was produced at WBZ-TV. WSBK is now a UPN affiliate, and owner Viacom thought the presence of a WBZ-branded newscast was diluting the station's new "UPN 38" identity. Rumor has New England Cable News switching from producing a 10pm cast for WFXT-Fox doing one
    for WSBK, bearing the "UPN 38 News" identity.
  • And finally, a death to report: Many of you have heard or heard of John Garabedian, the host of the syndicated "Open House Party" and one-time owner of WGTR Marlboro MA. His father, John N. Garabedian, died June 8 at age 94. John N. worked for his son at WGTR as the station's treasurer, after retiring as vice president of John H. Pray and Sons.

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