April 2001 News and Notes

April 2:

* WWJ-TV 62 Detroit will launch it's 11:00pm newscast tonight- it will air sometime after 11 due to coverage of the NCAA men's championship basketball game

* WADW-FM 105.5 Pickford (south of Sault Ste Marie) is on the air with an Oldies format as "Memories 105-5". The station was first issued a construction permit in about 1991- it is licensed for 55,000 watts at about 108 feet and owned by Seaway Broadcasting.

April 4:

* Bob Driscoll, owner of WION-AM Ionia, has passed away unexpectedly. Before buying WION, Bob owned part of the Michigan Farm Radio Network.

* FCC Action: Granted WTCU-FM 95.9 Fife Lake's application for minor change to construction permit- change from Class A (6,000 watts @ 322 ft) to Class C3 (25,000 watts @ 328 ft) plus slight location change

April 5:

* Northern Michigan University and Great Lakes Radio have signed a deal that will bring many NMU sporting events to listeners across the Upper Peninsula

* Music director Mark Feurie adds the program director title at WKLQ-FM 94.5 Grand Rapids; Former WEEG-FM 97.3 Bay City morning man Jim Ellis lands at WFDF-AM 910 Flint for the morning role, program director/morning man Gary Ratski exits- All Access

* Call sign change: FM 92.7 Saugatuck/Holland has changed its calls from WEVS to WYVN

April 6:

* The second phase of winter ratings for Grand Rapids were released yesterday- Country WBCT-FM, Top-40 WSNX-FM, News/Talk WOOD-AM, and Classic Rock WLAV-FM remained the top 4 stations with listeners age 12 and above. Adult Contemporary WOOD-FM edged up into a 5th place tie with Rock WKLQ-FM.

* Reporter Jeff Defran leaves WJR-AM Detroit for morning co-host duties at Sports WTKA-AM 1050 (The Ticket) Ann Arbor- The Oakland Press

* FCC Actions: Granted the voluntary transfer of control for WLDR-FM 101.9 Traverse City from Donald Witala to Fort Bend Broadcasting; Granted the modification of construction permit for WOBE-FM 100.7 Crystal Falls (Class A to Class C1, ERP to 100,000 watts from 350, HAAT to 653 feet from 121, plus a location change)

April 7:

* WYVN-FM 92.7 Holland has dropped its classic hits programming and is stunting towards a 5pm Monday format switch

* Lansing phase 2 ratings trends were released yesterday- The top 5 stations this time were Adult Contemporary WFMK-FM, Top 40 WHZZ-FM, Oldies WJIM-FM, Rock WJXQ-FM, and Classic Rock WMMQ-FM. Former number 1 station Country WITL-FM has slipped to 6th place overall.

April 9:

* WYVN-FM 92.7 Holland has relaunched itself as 'The new 92.7, The Van'. The station's format remains Classic Hits focused- the same as before it began stunting on Friday by reading names out of the local telephone book with the prefix 'Van' added to each one.

* Infinity Broadcasting and the Detroit Lions have agreed on a new four year contract for radio coverage worth $16 million. The new deal calls for WWJ-AM 950 to simulcast WXYT-AM 1270 for all games- previously WWJ only simulcast games starting after 4:00pm.

* Roberts Broadcasting, which was a wholly owned subsidiary of Badger Communications, has been essentially merged together with its parent company in a stock transfer valued at $3 million. 2 Michigan stations, Ironwood's WIMI-FM 99.7 and WJMS-AM 590, were involved in the transaction. Roberts will remain the licensee of the stations.

April 10:

* Rachel Geddes moves from overnights to marketing director at WIOG-FM Bay City/Saginaw- All Access

* FCC Actions: Granted WHTV-TV 18 Jackson its license to cover (200,000 watts ERP, 899 ft HAAT, directional); Granted Great Lakes Community Broadcasting a construction permit for a new non-commercial educational radio station at 89.3 FM in Marlette (100 watts ERP, 98 ft HAAT)

April 11:

* On the heels of Clear Channel pulling the plug on all of its stations' webcasts due to concerns over legal and financial issues, many other broadcasting groups are following suit today. At least 50 Michigan radio stations are no longer streaming their signals on the Internet- in addition to Clear Channel, Citadel, ABC/Disney, and others have turned off web streaming.

* Call sign change: On April 5th, WSRI 92.1 Beulah became WOUF

April 12:

* Sold (pending FCC approval): WMPL-FM/AM 93.5/920 Hancock for $237,000 by Copper Country Enterprises to Victor Corporation- R&R Online

* FCC Action: Granted WHYT-FM 89.1 Imlay City its license to cover for a new station

April 16:

* John Mason announced today that he will not be returning to Urban WJLB-FM 97.9 Detroit as its morning host. Mason's contract with the Clear Channel owned station expired April 1st, he has been off the air ever since after spending 17 years at FM 98. According to a statement released by Mason earlier today, he plans on reviewing all his options before making any kind of announcement as to his future plans.

April 23:

* Leamington Ontario's CHYR-FM 96.7 (Cheer-FM) switched its format over the weekend from Country to Adult Contemporary. The station can be received up across much of the Metro Detroit area.

* Winter 2001 ratings for Detroit were released today. Among listeners age 12 and above, Adult Contemporary WNIC-FM continues to hold its spot as Detroit's most listened to radio station. News/Talk WJR-AM improved to 2nd place overall- up from 3rd in the Fall ratings. All-news WWJ-AM finished third with Urban WJLB-FM ending in 4th spot. 5th place was a three-way tie between Oldies WOMC-FM, Rock WRIF-FM, and Top-40 WDRQ-FM. Stations with a ratings improvement of .5% or better since the fall included: WDRQ (3.9 - 4.9), Urban AC WMXD-FM (3.7 - 4.2), and Top 40 WKQI-FM (3.5 - 4.1). Stations with large drops included Smooth Jazz WVMV-FM (5.1 - 4.5), Country WYCD-FM (4.9 - 4.0), Urban WDTJ-FM (4.7 - 3.9), the now Sports WXYT-AM (3.0 - 2.3), and Talk WKRK-FM (2.2 - 1.6).

* FCC Action: Approved construction permit for WEUL-FM 98.1 Iron Mountain to increase power to 1,000 watts @ 466 ft from current 240 watts @ 482 feet, city of license changed to Kingsford

April 25:

* WLEN-FM 103.9 Adrian was a winner of the National Association of Broadcasters Crystal Award- given to stations for their efforts "to improve the quality of life in their surrounding communities".

* Sold: The remaining 70% interest in WCUP-FM 105.7 L'Anse from S & S Broadcasting to Keweenaw Bay Indian Community. Keweenaw Bay previously held 30% of the station- the deal pays off S & S Broadcaasting's current debt- R&R Online

April 26:

* Michigan State University has agreed to a 4-year deal with Infinity Broadcasting that will put Spartans basketball on WWJ and football on WXYT beginning next fall- Detroit News

* Weekend and swing shifter Mike Scott adds the role of program coordinator at WYCD-FM 99.5 Detroit; Nick Craig lands parttime on-air and behind the scenes roles at WKQI-FM 95.5 Detroit- Nick was previously at WTWR-FM 98.3 Monroe and sister station WWWM-FM 105.5 Toledo- All Access

April 28:

* New program director for Classic Rock trimulcasters WGFN-FM 98.1 Glen Arbor / WGFM-FM 105.1 Cheboygan / WCKC-FM 107.1 Cadillac (The Bear) is Ray Bauer, replacing the outgoing Greg Fletcher- All Access


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