June 1999 News and Notes

June 2:

* Former WABX-FM 99.5 Detroit Air Ace Dave Dixon passes away at 60

* FCC Action: Approved a construction permit for WXDG-FM 105.1 Detroit for an Auxiliary Facility; ERP 16,500 watts, HAAT 228 meters.

June 3:

* Promoted: Mark Shepherd of WDIV-TV 4 Detroit from Senior News Producer to Executive News Producer- Detroit Free Press

* FCC Actions: Granted a construction permits for 2 FM translators of WSAE Spring Arbor to increase power- the first, located at 96.5 in Adrian (W243AD) will go to 120 watts from 50 watts; the second, located at 92.5 in Battle Creek (W223AE) will go to 80 watts from 50 watts.

June 4:

* All Access reports that WJLB-FM 97.9 Detroit nighttime co-host Arthur Young (Art in 'Da Dark) has passed away at age 21 from leukemia.

June 5:

* The format for CHKS-FM 106.3 Sarnia will be Modern Rock Hits as 'K-106'; Program Director is Ron Dann- Oakland Press

* Adding Assistant Program Director duties at WKQI-FM 95.5 Detroit is afternoon jock Jo Jo Kincaid; New General Sales Manager at WDMK-FM 102.7 Mt. Clemens is Allen Gantman- All Access

* Westwood One (owned by CBS) has purchased Metro Traffic and will combine it with its own Shadow Traffic service. No official word on what this means to the on-air folks that provide traffic reports to many Detroit radio and TV stations.

June 7:

* FCC Action: Granted LPTV station W68CH Detroit a construction permit to move to channel 33; ERP will decrease to 15,000 watts from current 21,900. Tower location will change from near Livernois and Davison to near I-96 and Evergreen.

June 8:

* The pending sales of Goodrich Radio owned WSNX-FM 104.5 Muskegon and WODJ-FM 107.3 Greenville are very close to becoming reality. WSNX will go to Clear Channel, WODJ to Michigan Media (Bloomington Broadcasting).

* New afternoon voice on WXDG-FM 105.1 Detroit beginning Monday 6/14 will be Doc Reno, in from Buffalo- All Access

* WGVU-TV 35 Grand Rapids has applied for its digital facilities on channel 11.

June 9:

* From All Access, the lastest Arbitrend reports are out for Grand Rapids and Lansing covering February through April. In Grand Rapids, Classic Rock WLAV has moved back to number one, bumping former #1 CHR-Rhythmic WSNX to 3rd overall. Country WBCT landed in 2nd. Big winners were three Adult Contemporary stations, WOOD-FM, WLHT, and WTRV- WTRV increased its rating from 2.7 to 3.6. Urban WJNZ-AM continues to improve its ratings as more people find the station. Lansing's WITL-FM also returned to the #1 spot, followed by Adult Contemporary WFMK and the surging Oldies WJIM-FM. Also improving was CHR WHZZ-FM.

* WTCF-FM 100.5 Saginaw Assistant Program Director and midday host Juli Jay has left the station; New Program Director at WFBE-FM 95.1 Flint is Brian Cherry; WFAT-FM 96.5 Kalamazoo Assistant Program Director and midday host Colleen Adams has resigned, her last day is 6/23- All Access

June 10:

* Silent stations WZTU-FM 100.1 Bear Lake and WBVE-FM 92.1 Beulah will be simulcasting a CHR/Top 40 format once they get back on the air. Reported call new call for WZTU is WSRQ as 'Star'- DX-MidAMerica

* WWJ AM 950 Detroit has applied to upgrade its daytime signal to 50,000 watts from the current 12,000.

* Liggett Broadcasting has broken ground in a Saginaw Twp. on a new building to house the studios for WTCF-FM 100.5 and WHNN-FM 96.1. The current location originally held WHNN; with the recent purchase and move of WTCF to the WHNN building, space has become a premium item- thanks, Gary Flinn

* FCC Actions: WXYZ-DT 41 and WDIV-DT 45 Detroit were granted their licenses (for digital facilities).

June 11:

* The Tri-Cities Arbitrend report has been released- The top 3 stations remain Country WKCQ, News/Talk WSGW, and Oldies WHNN. Swapping 4th and 5th positions were Rock WKQZ and Hot AC/CHR WIOG, with WKQZ making a large jump from 7.3 to 8.9. Rival Rock station WWBN also made a noticeable increase. Stations struggling this period included CHR WTCF, Urban AC WTLZ, and Nostalgia WMRX/WMPX.

* Being sold: Ypsilanti's WWCM AM 990 to former Domino's Pizza owner Tom Monaghan. This will be the second venture into radio ownership for Mr. Monaghan; previously he owned WPZA AM 1050 Ann Arbor (now WTKA). Look for the format of WWCM to change to Catholic broadcasting- Oakland Press

* Changes at WCFX-FM 95.3 Clare: Johnny Danger takes over nights from Jon Carson who has moved to afternoons. Former afternoon host Tony Travatto has moved on to WFAT-FM 96.5 Kalamazoo as Music Director. Rob Ryan, former midday jock, is no longer with the station; filling in temporarily is Dann Hayes, who is leaving the station at the end of the month- All Access

* WKBD-TV 50 Detroit has applied for its digital facilities on channel 14.

June 12:

* FCC Action: Approved call sign change of WZTU FM 100.1 Bear Lake to WSRQ

June 14:

* Sale price of WWCM AM 990 Ypsilanti: $2.5 million. Seller is Word Broadcasting Inc, offical buyer is Ave Marie Foundation- Broadcasting & Cable

June 15:

* WKPK-FM 106.7 Gaylord has added live web broadcasting to its web site.

* WTCF-FM 100.5 Saginaw morning co-host and Program Director Mark McGill is leaving the station, along with consultant Mark Bolke- All Access

June 16:

* WXBV AM 1140 Grand Rapids has dropped its talk format in favor of Westwood One's Rhythmic Oldies format known as "Groovin' Oldies".

* Congratulations to Dick Purtan of WOMC-FM 104.3 Detroit on being honored as Oldies Air Personality of the Year by Radio & Records- Detroit Free Press

June 17:

* WTCF FM 100.5 Saginaw has tweaked its format from Mainstream CHR to Rhythmic CHR.

* AM 1140 Grand Rapids has changed its call sign back to WKWM from WXBV.

* WJRT-TV 12 Flint breaks ground on addition to its facility; extra room needed for digital TV equipment- Flint Journal

* FCC Actions: The following LPTV stations have had their licenses cancelled and call signs deleted- W30AK, W35AK, W43AN, W47AF, W56BF, W59AQ, W63AW, W65BN, W67AO, K69BA. All of these stations were licensed to Bresnan Communications in Iron Mountain.

June 18:

* WKAR FM,AM,TV E. Lansing have all added webcasting of local programming to their revamped web sites- Michigan State University

* WGRD FM 97.9 Grand Rapids Program Director Margot Smith delays her departure until July 15th as the search for a replacement continues- All Access

June 21:

* WNIC and WJLB remain 1-2 with WJR moving to 3rd overall in the Spring Phase 2 Arbitrend Report for Detroit. The emergence of Classic Soul on 105.1 (WXDG) is being felt in the ratings; WXDG increased its share at the expense of competitors WOMC, WVMV, and WMXD. Other stations with improvements were WJR, WRIF, WDRQ, and WWWW. FM Talker WKRK is in danger of falling off the ratings reports, falling to 23rd overall behind WDFN, WDMK, and WGPR- All Access

* Sold for $450,000: WPLB-FM/AM 106.3/1380 Greenville by Kortes Communications to Stafford Broadcasting- Broadcasting & Cable

* Stations add webcasting capabilities: WJQK-FM 99.3 Zeeland and CHYR-FM 96.7 Leamington ON.

* FCC Action: Granted construction permit to WUOM FM 91.7 Ann Arbor for auxiliary facilities- 110kW, HAAT 146m

June 22:

* WSRQ FM 100.1 Bear Lake and WBVE FM 92.1 Beulah have started testing. Word is that there are engineers in the area attempting to get the stations on the air sometime soon with a 'format to be named later'.

* From All Access: Program Director and morning co-host Jay J. McCrae has left WXIK FM 94.1 Jackson to take over the PD post at rival WITL-FM 100.7 Lansing. McCrae's wife and morning co-host Jordan Lee has also left WXIK for WITL. This is McCrae's second tenure at WITL, having been the PD there from 1990 through 1995; Over 85,000 attended WBCT FM 93.7 Grand Rapids 7th annual birthday bash over the weekend (that's 10,000 more folks than attended the Dallas Star's Stanley Cup victory parade yesterday in Dallas).

* FCC Action: Granted the application of WOOD-TV for its digital facilities on channel 7. Also, WADL-TV 38 Mt. Clemens has applied for its digital facilities on channel 39.

June 23:

* Sold: Muskegon area stations WMHG AM 1600, WMRR FM 101.7, and WSHZ FM 107.9 Muskegon from Goodrich Radio to Connoisseur Communications for $2.7 million. Once this transaction is approved by the FCC, Connoisseur will own 11 stations in Michigan- 7 in the Flint/Saginaw area and 4 in Muskegon.

* WKRK FM 97.1 Detroit and Steve Dahl have parted ways. During yesterday's show, the live feed between Chicago and Detroit was dropped after Dahl said goodbye to Detroit. WKRK filled the remaining time of Dahl's program with 'Best of' segments of the Erin & Gonzo show. Today the lineup was Howard Stern mornings, Erin & Gonzo until 4pm, the tape delayed Mancow program, followed by Tom Leykis.

* Not to be outdone by fellow country station B93 Gd. Rapids, WKCQ FM 98.1 Saginaw drew 92,000 to its free Music Fest; Chuck Cordell, afternoon host at WIOG 102.5 Bay City, has left the station: filling in on an interim basis is Mark McGill while he looks for a new Program Director position (having left WTCF)- All Access

June 24:

* WZPX TV 43 Battle Creek will add WB programming to its lineup in the fall. Pax programming will remain in prime time and the station will also keep UPN programs in its lineup. Exact scheduling details for WB and UPN shows is still being worked out.

* Replacement for the Steve Dahl show afternoons on WKRK FM 97.1 Detroit is the Don & Mike show, syndicated from Washington DC.

June 25:

* WBGV 92.5 Marlette has (finally!) started its testing phase. The station has had at least 10 extensions to its construction permit over the past few years. No word on a format yet.

June 27:

* The simulcasting WSRQ FM 100.1 Bear Lake and WBVE FM 92.1 Beulah have officially hit the air with an 80's Hits format 'Star FM'.

* WGRD FM 97.9 Grand Rapids has added live webcasting to its updated web site.

* Updates on a pair of new Upper Peninsula stations: WWHK 106.3 Stephenson- was announced earlier that this station was to be 'Hawk' with a Country format sometime in June, now expected to be WMXG and CHR sometime in July. WOBE 100.7 Crystal Falls expected to be B101 with Oldies format sometime in September- DX-MidAMerica

* WWMT TV 3 Kalamazoo is reporting that it will add Real Video to its web site soon.

June 28:

* News from All Access:

  • An agreement to sell WCXT FM 105.3 Hart from Waters Broadcasting to Harbor Pointe Communications has been reached; the perspective new owners have lots of big changes planned:
    + New calls to be WWIP as '105.3 the Whip', a CHR/rhythmic format by July 2nd under a LMA.
    + Pending FCC approval, the station will move to Muskegon to get full signal coverage over Grand Rapids
    + Moving from mornings at WHZZ FM 101.7 Lansing for mornings will be John Hammer and Connie
  • Also leaving WHZZ is AE Cynthia Conklin who heads for a sales position at WGRD FM 97.9 Grand Rapids.

* WVIC FM 92.7 Charlotte has fallen silent.

* FCC Actions: Granted WOBE FM 100.7 Crystal Falls a modification to its construction permit: changed tower location and HAAT from 78 to 149 meters; Official call change date for 1140 Kentwood from WXBV back to WKWM was 6/21

June 29:

* WKRK FM 97.1 Detroit will be the new home of the Lovelines show beginning July 26th as the program moves from CIMX FM 88.7 Windsor. The show will air from from 1-3am - Detroit Free Press

* New Program Director and Operations Manager at WTCF FM 100.5 Saginaw is Rich Stevens; Greater Media announces the appointment of General Sales Managers for two stations, Ron Steinman (WCSX) and Vince Turco (WXDG). WXDG plans to announce its new slogan and winner of the 'Name the Station' contest on Friday, about 10,000 entries were received; WOOD-FM 105.7 Grand Rapids Program Director Steve Dirksen has moved to sales and is replaced in the PD chair by Robb Westaby- All Access


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