March 2001 News and Notes

March 5:

* Terry Arnold moves from WDTJ-FM Detroit to the station manager role at Detroit sister stations WJLB-FM and WMXD-FM. Peter Connolly gives up the same role at WJLB and WMXD, but keeps the title for WLLC-FM, WDFN-AM, and WXDX-AM; Newscaster Paul Miller will be leaving WJR-AM for a role outside radio- Detroit Free Press

* Jack Lawson is the new vice president / general manager for Fort Bend Broadcasting's Traverse City cluster of stations (WLDR-FM, WJZZ-AM, WSRQ-FM, WSRI-FM, WTCU-FM). Lawson was previously operations manager for the Tri-Cities WKQZ-FM and WYLZ/WILZ-FM.

* Mort Crim, former WDIV-TV Detroit anchor man and current host of the syndicated Second Thoughts commentary, will launch a live radio daily newscast on July 2nd titled News You Care About. It'll be scheduled to air at 7am on weekdays- All Access

March 6:

* Brian Figula (Fig) has left his role as weekender/swing at Lansing's WWDX-FM for a fulltime role in Springfield, IL. Before WWDX, Fig was was in Flint at WWBN/WCRZ/WFNT as promotions director/on-air.

* FCC Action: Granted WQBX-FM 104.9 Alma's application for modification of license to increase power to 6,000 watts from 3,000

March 7:

* WNSX-FM Muskegon/Gd Rapids nighttime host Broadway Billy Macc is upped to music director and nights, replacing Brad Newman- All Access

March 8:

* New call sign for AM 1290 Saline is WCAS, replacing WYBN

March 9:

* WWCK-AM 1570 Flint has dropped its simulcast of Top-40 WWCK-FM 105.5 in favor of satellite-fed Gospel programming

* Brad Morgan, evening air talent and production assistant of WCEN-FM 94.5 and WTCF-FM 100.5, has resigned to work for Premiere Radio's Mediabase 24/7. Morgan had worked at WCEN since 1995, and served as production director/air talent, under the Sommerville Broadcasting ownership. After the sale to Wilks Broadcasting, he became Assistant Production Director for the Wilks' cluster in Saginaw. Morgan has previously worked at WGER-FM, and Flint's CARS 108, respectively.

* The first phase of winter ratings for Grand Rapids find the same four stations at the top- Country WBCT-FM, Top-40 WSNX-FM, News/Talk WOOD-AM, and Classic Rock WLAV-FM. Moving into the top five was Rock WKLQ-FM.

March 11:

* Memories 1250, WKNX Saginaw/Bay City recently moved into a new office/studio facility in Saginaw. The new building is located on 13 acres at 2850 Gabel Road, east of Sheridan, where WKNX's three 400 foot broadcasting towers and transmitter have been since 1957. This is the fifth studio location for WKNX since it went on the air in 1947. The station is owned and operated by John W. and Kathy (Libbey) Blehm, of Birch Run and has 12 full and part-time employees. With the recent consolidation of many radio stations WKNX is one of the few remaining "mom and pop" stations in the area. The studios had been located in a rented building in Frankenmuth since 1984. After looking at several options they decided to take advantage of the property already owned by WKNX and build a new facility there. An open house is being planned for late spring or early summer to give listeners a chance to tour the new WKNX studios.

* Program director and afternoon jock Mike Tinnes has left Classic Rock station WZUU-FM 92.3 Kalamazoo; Lynn Roberts moves from Top 40 WIOG-FM 102.5 Bay City where she was promotion director and midday personality to sister station Oldies WHNN-FM 96.1 as morning show co-host; JJ Shades moves from Flint Top 40 WWCK-FM 105.5 to WIOG to take the vacant midday slot- All Access

* Lansing's winter first phase ratings have Adult Contemporary WFMK-FM keeping its top spot, followed by Top 40 WHZZ-FM, Oldies WJIM-FM, Country WITL-FM, and Classic Rock WMMQ-FM. WITL dropped a position again this trend- its ratings have fallen from 12.2 in the Summer of 2000 to 7.4 this time out.

March 13:

* Oldies WOMC-FM 104.3 Detroit general sales manager Jack Johnson exits the station- All Access

* FCC Actions: Granted Class A status to Low Power TV stations WOGC-LP 25 Grand Rapids and WUPT-LP 25 Crystal Falls; Granted WUPT a construction permit to move from channel 49 to channel 25

March 14:

* 96.3 Detroit has switched call sign from WPLT to WDVD

March 15:

* FCC Actions: Granted WMRX-FM 97.7 its application to modify its license (increase ERP from 2,000 to 4,100 watts); Granted WMHW-FM 91.5 Mt. Pleasant its application for a minor change (slight change in tower location)

March 16:

* WXYT-AM 1270 Detroit has added One-on-One sports weekends and overnights- the station is now all-sports with the exception of Don Imus' program weekday mornings and Glenn Haege's Ask the Handyman weekend show. Gone from the lineup are Jimmy Barrett and Charlie Langton.

* FCC Actions: Granted WWCM-FM 96.9 Standish its application for modification of license; granted WAIR-FM 100.7 Honor a modification to its construction permit (ERP from 4,100 to 4,700 watts, HAAT from 328 to 367 feet, modification of tower location closer to Traverse City); granted W247AM 97.3 Kalamazoo its license to cover

March 19:

* WJZZ-AM 1210 Traverse City is now airing primarily a Talk format. Most of the programming is from the Michigan Talk Radio Network. The station airs a simulcast of CNN Headline News afternoons from 3-7pm.

* According to the Traverse City Record-Eagle, Fort Bend Broadcasting is continuing its expansion in Northwest Lower Michigan by purchasing WBNZ-FM 99.3 Benzie from Crystal Clear Communications.

* WOOD-FM 105.7 Grand Rapids (EZ-105.7) raised over $143,000 during its Children's Miracle Network radiothon this past weekend- All Access

March 20:

* Chris Nichols has been named music director at WFAT-FM 96.5 Kalamazoo; Cooper, formerly of WTCF-FM 100.5 Saginaw during its Pirate Radio days, lands at WBTI-FM 96.9 Lexington/Pt. Huron for nights- All Access

March 21:

* Sean Kelly joins WIOG-FM 102.5 Bay City/Saginaw for nights; WGRD-FM 97.9 Grand Rapids assistant music director and afternoon co-host Michael Grey adds the promotions director role in place of APD, Remy loses the promotions director gig in favor of becoming nighttime events coordinator, and morning co-host Stephanie Webb adds promotion coordinator tasks; WVTI-FM 96.1 Holland/Gd Rapids afternoon jock TJ McKay moves to 10am-3pm and adds web responsibilites, Ken Evans swaps on-air positions with McKay, moving to afternoons- All Access

March 22:

* The Captain has announced his retirement from WKHQ-FM 105.9 Charlevoix/Traverse City after nearly 20 years at the station. He'll still be heard around the state on his 3-7pm Michigan Talk Radio Network program- All Access

March 23:

* Charlie Langton fans can still catch his program on WXYT-AM 1270 Detroit (Team 1270)- he's been given an early morning spot (6-8am) Sundays; new general sales manager at WOMC-FM 104.3 Detroit (Oldies 104.3) is Steve Wright; Bob Dutko is the new permanent 1-4pm host on WMUZ-FM 103.5 Detroit (The Light)

March 24:

* WCAS-AM 1290 Saline/Ann Arbor switched its format from Business News/Talk to Adult Standards yesterday. The station is currently owned by Clear Channel- its previous call sign was WYBN.

March 26:

* Northern Star Broadcasting has changed the format of WAVC-FM 93.9 Mio- it is now Country, simulcasting sister station WMKC-FM 102.9 St. Ignace (Big Country). The station was previously airing Northern Star's Modern Rock 'The Zone' format, which is also heard on FM 94.5 Mackinaw City (WLJZ) and FM 95.5 Glen Arbor/Traverse City (WJZJ). The Alpena translator of 93.9 (98.1 W251AD) is believed to still be rebroadcasting 93.9's signal, of course now with Country programming.

* Winter phase 2 Arbitrend 12+ ratings for Detroit were released today- the top 5 stations in the phase 1 trend held their spots: Adult Contemporary WNIC-FM stayed on top, followed by News WWJ-AM, News/Talk WJR-AM, Urban WJLB-FM, and Oldies WOMC-FM.

* No longer with WSGW-AM 790 Saginaw is morning co-host Terry Lenz. Lenz, a 23-year veteran of the station, will be replaced by Art Lewis and Charlie Rood- Saginaw News

* Brad Morgan, formerly of WCEN-FM 94.5 Mt. Pleasant/Saginaw, has landed swing and weekend duty at Flint's WCRZ-FM 107.9

* FCC Actions: Granted the voluntary assignment of license for the silent WJKN-AM 1510 Jackson from Coltrace Communications to Spring Arbor College Communications; Granted the voluntary assignment of license for W18BT Alpena from Thunder Bay Broadcasting to Trinity Broadcasting Network; Granted WDWO-LP 18 Detroit its license to cover for changes

March 27:

* WXIK-FM 94.1 Jackson/Lansing (Kix 94.1) dropped its Country format at about 11:25pm last night, replacing it with Classic Hits this morning. The station is using the WVIC call sign which has moved from sister station 92.7 Charlotte. The station is positioning itself as 'Rockin Hits 94.1 WVIC'. During its heyday, WVIC was located at 94.9 FM in Lansing- during the 1980's and early 90's was one of the county's highest rated stations playing Top 40 music. The last song played by Kix was What about Now by Lonestar- the station then ID'd as WXIK Jackson/Lansing and fell silent until this morning. Artists heard in the 9:00am hour include Foreigner, Elton John, Great White, Huey Lewis & the News, Journey, The Police, and Bob Seger. FM 92.7 Charlotte's new call sign is WQTX.

* FCC Action: Granted WPXD-TV 31 Ann Arbor its license to cover for changes (increase in ERP)

March 28:

* There will be no free access this year for fans of the Detroit Tigers looking to hear Internet webcasts of the games. Major League Baseball and Real Networks have reached a deal to charge fans $9.95 for the season to access game webcasts for all of the major league teams. Local stations that regularly stream their signal will not be allowed to webcast the play-by-play feed.

* WBFX-FM 101.3 Grand Rapids (The Fox) afternoon guy Aris Hampers has added the role of music director- All Access

* Call sign action: FM 93.7 Frankenmuth has been assigned WZRZ

* FCC Actions: Granted W48CL Grand Rapids Class A status; Granted the voluntary assignment of license from Good News Television to Wiegel Broadcasting for WYBN-LP 25 Berrien Springs

March 30:

* FCC Actions: Granted W210BB 89.9 Benton Harbor its license (translator of WPCS-FM Pensacola, FL); cancelled the license for the long-silent WOPR-FM 90.3 Oak Park

March 31:

* WSRI-FM 92.1 Beulah and WSRQ-FM 100.1 Bear Lake have returned to the airwaves in Northwest lower Michigan after being silent since about November 1999. Now owned by Fort Bend Broadcasting, both stations are currently duplicating the programming of other Fort Bend owned stations: WSRI 92.1 is simulcasting WLDR-FM 101.9 Traverse City (Adult Contemporary) and WSRQ 100.1 is simulcasting WBNZ-FM 99.3 Frankfort (Hot Adult Contemporary).

* WKBZ-AM 1520 Muskegon, which was airing Radio Disney, has gone silent. The station's owner, WLC Broadcasting, is apparently bankrupt and creditors are in the process of seizing the assests of the station.


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