* WUPT-CA 49 Crystal Falls, a UPN affiliate, has moved to channel 25. The low power TV station has a translator station on channel 43 in Republic Twp (Marquette County) and has cable coverage in many areas in the central Upper Peninsula.
* FCC Action: Changed the call sign of FM 88.9 Flint to WAKL from WGRI
* WZPX-TV 43 Battle Creek has been off the air since last Wednesday due to a fire at their transmitter site that damaged some essential equipement. The station is a primary affiliate of Pax and also carries programming from the WB network. Engineers are working on getting the station back on the air at reduced power as quickly as possible.
* New production director at WJLB-FM 97.9 Detroit is Jason Alexander; he takes over from Kevin Collins- All Access
* New program director at Rock WRKR-FM 107.7 Kalamazoo is Danny Wright- All Access
* Hot Wings: Friday, Nov. 2 was a landmark night for FOX Sports Net's Detroit affiliate, as the largest audience in the four-plus years of the regional network tuned in to that night's Red Wlngs game. Immediately following the game, the Detroit Sports Report also had its most viewers in a single night during the 17 months of the regional news operation. Based on data received from Nielsen Media Research, the game registered a 9.7 household rating in the Detroit metro area, meaning an average of approximately 182,000 homes tuned in over the course of the telecast. The average rating for eight Red Wings games on FSN this season is 8.2, an increase of 118% compared to the first eight telecasts last season (8.2 vs. 3.6).
* The FCC has apparently approved the sale of Urban WTLZ-FM 107.1 Saginaw to Wilks Broadcasting from Cumulus. The Commission had previously 'red-flagged' the $3.75 million deal to study ownership and revenue concentration concerns. Jeff Wilks says, "WTLZ-FM is an exciting addition to our current cluster of four stations in Saginaw and will help us continue to leverage our strong group of stations in this market."- Radio Ink
* Pax/WB affiliate WZPX-TV 43 Battle Creek has made inital repairs to its tranmsitter facilites and is now back on the air. The station went back at about 25% of its licensed power and hopes to jump to 50% sometime today. Completion date for all the repairs is not yet known.
* Dave B. Goode is named as program director at WHZZ-FM 101.7 Lansing. Goode previously held the role on an interim basis; TJ McKay exits middays at WVTI-FM 96.1 Grand Rapids, replaced by program director Jeff Andrews; Also leaving is WOOD-FM 105.7 Grand Rapids afternoon guy Michael Siriani. The changes at WVTI and WOOD-FM are a result of downsizing by parent Clear Channel- All Access
* FCC Actions: Granted the voluntary assignment of license from Marathon Media to Northern Star Broadcasting for WYSS-FM 99.5 and WKNW-AM 1400 Sault Ste Marie, WIMK-FM 93.1 and WMIQ-AM 1450 Iron Mountain, WUPK-FM 94.1 and WDMJ-AM 1320 Marquette, WJPD-FM 92.3 and WIAN-AM 1240 Ishpeming, WIHC-FM 97.9 Newberry, WNGE-FM 99.5 Negaunee, and WZNL-FM 94.3 Norway; Granted the voluntary assignment of license from Cook Media to Birach Broadcasting for WMFN-AM 640 Zeeland and WMJH-AM 810 Rockford.
* Former Detroit (WRIF-WCSX) morning show personality George Baier is now a full time member of the Captain and Crew show on the Michigan Talk Radio Network. Baier is best known for his characterizations of former wrestler Dick the Bruiser, Tiger broadcaster Ernie Harwell, and many other top Michigan celebrities. Baier has been a bit player in the program but now is a regular participant. The Captain and Crew program also features "The Captain" Bill Vogel, Coco Corey, WILX-TV Lansing's Darrin Rockcole, and Mike Fornes. New radio stations continue to sign up for the program. WPHM-AM 1380 Port Huron added the Captain and Crew program to its lineup yesterday. Other stations include WMIQ-AM 1450 Iron Mountain, WNBY-AM 1450 Newberry, WJML-AM 1110 Petoskey, WHAK-AM 960 Rogers City, WLDR-AM 1210 Traverse City, WNWZ-AM 1410 Grand Rapids, WMMI-AM 830 Mount Pleasant, and WFDF-AM 910 Flint.
* WJR-AM 760 Detroit evening host David Newman suffered a minor stroke earlier in the week and was off the air on Thursday and Friday. Newman is already out of intensive care and improving. Sub John McColloch will hold down the spot along with Warren Pierce and Foster Braun. In related news, Mitch Albom has offically pulled the plug on his afternoon show's TV simulcast on MSNBC. The show had been preempted every day since the Sept. 11 attacks on New York and Washington- Detroit Free Press
* WOOD-FM 105.7 Grand Rapids has moved to an All-Christmas format effective today and repositioned itself as "The New Star 105.7", replacing Adult Contemporary "EZ-105.7". Robb Westaby remains in the morning slot, followed Mary Ellen Murphy middays. A permanent afternoon slot hasn't been announced, Delilah will continue for evenings. The station is making the move to All-Christmas this year in an effort to connect with listeners that desire the good feelings of the Holiday season.
* WTRV-FM 100.5 Grand Rapids also switched to All-Christmas this morning- dropping its Adult Contemporary format until after the Holiday season. WTRV has also restored its live web stream.
* Toledo's WRWK-FM 106.5 will apparently drop its Rock format in favor of something different starting Wednesday at 1:06pm. The station began stunting late last night and normal programming has not returned.
* News/Talk WJR-AM remained on top of the latest Detroit 12+ ratings trend released today, with All News WWJ-AM moving up to second place. Oldies WOMC-FM moved to third place, followed by Urban WJLB-FM, and Smooth Jazz WVMV-FM. Adult Contemporary WNIC-FM slipped to 6th place overall. Stations making strong gains include WOMC and Adult Contemporary WMGC-FM.
* Toledo's WRWK-FM 106.5 ended its stunting and debuted its new format this afternoon- Modern Rock as 106-5 The Zone. The station previously was programmed with Active Rock.
* FCC Action: Granted the voluntary transfer of license for WZRZ-FM 93.7 Frankenmuth from Frankenmuth Radio Company to Regent Broadcasting
* New program director and afternoon host at WOOD-FM 105.7 Grand Rapids is John Patrick, who moves from sister stations in Battle Creek- Grand Rapids Press
* FCC Action: Granted WWBN-FM 101.5 Tuscola a construction permit to move tower from near Millington in Tuscola County to near Otisville in Genesee County. Power will decrease to 1,800 watts from 6,000, HAAT to increase to 489 feet from 328, pattern will change from directional to non-directional.
* New program director at Modern Rock WGRD-FM 97.9 Grand Rapids is Bobby Duncan, effective Dec 3- All Access
* Low power TV station W68CH (channel 68) Highland Park/Detroit is now simulcasting its signal on channel 33. The station has a construction permit for the channel 33 facilities and will eventually be required to turn off channel 68.
* FCC Action: Granted the West Michigan Community Help Network its construction permit for a new LPFM station at 103.7 in Muskegon
* The trend for radio stations to drop their regular format for all-holiday music continues. In the Detroit market, Adult Contemporary WNIC-FM 100.3 has switched to Christmas music for the long holiday weekend. AC rival WMGC-FM 105.1 also announced plans to be all-holiday music on Saturday and Sunday this weekend. Both stations will likely feature a hybrid of holiday and regular songs on Monday. Adult Standards CKWW-AM 580 has added Christmas music as of Thanksgiving and will gradually increase the number of holiday songs in their playlist until December 17th when the station will feature all-Christmas tunes through December 26th. As Christmas gets closer and closer, expect most area stations to heavily feature "songs of the season" as stations try to reflect the spirit of the country and the need to feel good again.
* FCC Actions: Granted the voluntary transfer of license from Gospel Radio International to Educational Media Foundation for WAKL-FM 88.9 Flint; Granted WKQS-FM 101.9 Negaunee a construction permit to increase HAAT from 535 to 1007 feet and change tower location from southeast to northeast of Ishpeming; Granted WFXD-FM 103.3 Marquette a construction permit to increase HAAT from 515 feet to 938 feet and change tower location from southwest of Marquette to northeast of Ishpeming (WKQS and WFXD will share a common tower)
* Chili Walker loses the interim tag on the role of program director at Modern Rock WWDX-FM 92.1 Lansing- All Access
* FCC Actions: Assigned the call sign WUVS-LP to LPFM at 103.7 Muskegon; Granted WMQT-FM 107.7 Ishpeming a construction permit for a minor change to move tower from southeast of Ishpeming to southwest of Marquette
* Country WBCT-FM remained the top rated station in Grand Rapids according to today's Arbitrend 12+ report. Top 40 WSNX-FM, Classic Rock WLAV-FM, News/Talk WOOD-AM, and Adult Contemporary WOOD-FM round out the top five stations in the first trend of the fall ratings period. Visit the Michiguide.com ratings page for the numbers.
* WODJ-FM Grand Rapids afternoon host and promotions director 'Big Magnussen' has left the station- All Access