Metro Detroit: March 2009 Archives

Detroit Free Press:

Detroit music is making (air) waves again thanks to the return of Ann Delisi to WDET-FM (101.9) this weekend. "Ann Delisi's Essential Music" -- running from noon-4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays -- is an extension of the station's rededicated focus to reconnect to the city, she says. The Detroit public radio station kicked off its new format, including 10 hours of locally produced music and three hours of live, interactive national news programming, on Monday. Delisi's show was scheduled to debut Saturday. Delisi was previously at 'DET from 1983-95, and also did stints at WDVD-FM, WRCJ-FM (90.9) and CIDR-FM (93.9). Over the past few years, she has stayed busy by focusing on freelance voiceover work, hosting a show on WRCJ and working as director of programming for Emery King's film-and-television production company, where she will continue to work while doing her show. The weekends, however, will be all about the music... Ann Delisi returns to WDET-FM (Sun, 3/1)


Detroit News:

Sports radio host Mike Valenti began his show Wednesday on The Ticket (97.1) by offering an apology for reading on the air a listener comment that made light of the situation involving Corey Smith. Smith is the former Lions player presumed dead in a boating accident in the Gulf of Mexico. On Monday's "Valenti and Foster Show" with co-host and Detroit News reporter Terry Foster, Valenti read instant messages from listeners over the air, including one joke about Smith and another about a capsized boat. Valenti opened Wednesday's show by referencing "a very, very, very stupid decision on my part -- probably the dumbest, most reprehensible decision I've made in my radio career. We were doing instant feedback and I put something flat-out on that never should've gotten on. No one else deserves to get blamed but me"... Ticket host Valenti sorry for reading boater joke (Wed, 3/4)



Detroit Free Press:

Detroit sports-talk radio host Mike Valenti apologized on the air today for reading jokes from listeners about free agent defensive end Corey Smith, who played for the Lions the past three seasons and is lost at sea. Valenti, leading off the "Valenti & Foster Show" on WXYT-FM (97.1), called it "a very, very, very stupid decision on my part, probably the dumbest, most reprehensible decision I've made in my radio career." Smith and three others went on a fishing trip over the weekend off the coast of Tampa, and their boat capsized. One survivor was found. The Coast Guard called off the search for Smith and the two others Tuesday evening. On Monday afternoon, Valenti read two instant messages from listeners -- one joke directly about Smith, another about a capsized boat... WXYT's Mike Valenti apologizes for Corey Smith comments (Wed, 3/4)

After Detroit Lions president Tom Lewand apologized to the family of Corey Smith for "reprehensible'' and "incredibly inappropriate'' remarks that were made on the team's flagship radio station (WXYT 97.1 FM), radio host Mike Valenti apologized to his listeners. During a Monday afternoon show featuring Valenti and co-host Terry Foster, several jokes were made about the situation involving four men who were missing in the Gulf of Mexico, including Lions defensive end Corey Smith. On Tuesday evening, the Coast Guard called off the search. One man was rescued with the boat but the remaining three men, including Smith, are still lost at sea. Here is a transcript from that show... Radio host apologizes for 'reprehensible' comments about Lions' Corey Smith (Wed, 3/4)


Detroit News:

The monthly Arbitron PPM ratings were released last week, and it's interesting to ponder how the new method of measuring the audience, with a portable "People Meter" clipped to one's person instead of a written diary, has changed the ratings. For January, all-news WWJ-AM (950) scored its first No. 1 ranking since 2003, jumping up from a 5.3 in the holiday book, to a 6.0 in January. Not so surprising was that sports station the Ticket, WXYT-FM (97.1) jumped into the Top 10 for the first time, or that WNIC-FM (100.3) took a dive from its holiday high of a 13.2 share after it turned off the Burl Ives tunes, down to 5.7 this past month. Country station WYCD-FM (99.5) jumped from a 4.1 share in December to 5.4 in January, and oldies WOMC-FM (104.3) had a rebound, jumping to a 5.1 share and No. 8 rank, after a dismal 4.2 in December... 'People Meter' changes ratings (Thu, 3/5)


Macomb Daily:

Is Fox 2 newsman Charles Pugh preparing to hang up his microphone to enter the wacky world of Detroit politics? Looks like it, but Charles isn't saying anything -- yet. The 37-year-old television and radio personality earlier this week told us he has something in the works but did acknowledge he will be leaving the air, at least on a temporary basis, early next month. "I'll be making an announcement on the air at 4 o'clock on April 5," Pugh said. The self-described Detroit-aholic, who was born in the Motor City and graduated in 1989 from Murray-Wright High School, won't confirm reports that he's going to run for a seat on the Detroit City Council. Yes, the same city council that currently is presided over by Monica Conyers, the council president who once referred to current Detroit Mayor Ken Cockrel as "Shrek." Pugh, the openly gay news reporter who attends numerous charitable events in the city, may be tiring of the daily news grind of carjackings, child killers and standing in the snow for TV weather reports. He also works for WJLB-FM (98.7), as well as reporting for WJBK-TV (Fox 2). In his Myspace profile, Pugh confirms he is "looking forward to my life beyond television and radio. In fact, that life is beginning soon"... Fox 2's Pugh leaving airwaves soon, possibly to seek political office (Fri, 3/6)


The Source-Shelby Twp./

Twenty-three-year-old Lauren Podell, once a Utica Community Schools student, can now be found gracing the screens of your television, reporting the evening traffic and general assignments for Local 4 WDIV. Podell has been a resident of Shelby Township for eight years. She is a recent 2008 graduate of Oakland University in Rochester Hills, where she earned a major in communications and minor in journalism. Podell started working for WDIV approximately one year prior to earning her communications degree as a morning traffic reporter. In November 2007, she entered a contest held by Local 4 WDIV searching for their next traffic reporter. More than 300 people auditioned and in the end only two were chosen, Podell herself and now co-worker, Heather Zara. Daughter of Doug Podell, program director and afternoon DJ at WRIF-FM, Podell at one point entertained the idea of becoming a psychologist, but said she knew since she was in junior high she wanted to be on television. "For as long as I remember, nothing else interested me," she said. "My father has been one of my biggest inspirations and supporters. I grew up seeing how much passion he had for the business and I knew I wanted that." As of last month, Podell moved to the evening news where she reports the traffic alongside Ruth Spencer and Kim Adams during the Local 4 News at 4, 5 and 6 p.m. With the recent transition, Podell has already started to expand her role from traffic reporter into more of a news role, where she is able to go live in the field as a general assignment reporter... Township resident serves as on-air TV reporter (Sat, 3/7)


Ann Arbor News:

Ann Arbor news and talk radio station WAAM, which made some gains in the latest ratings for commercial stations in southeast Michigan, is implementing several afternoon programming changes. Lou Dobbs' syndicated live show now airs on WAAM (1600 AM) weekdays from 2- 4 p.m. Glenn Beck's syndicated talk show moves to noon-2 p.m. weekdays to replace Bill O'Reilly's "The Radio Factor." Unchanged is the locally-produced "On The Edge" with Thayrone, talking news and politics weekdays from 4 p.m.-6 p.m. The latest Arbitron ratings for commercial radio stations in this market show that WAAM gained in listenership, going from a 0.9 share in the spring 2008 period to 1.8 share for fall 2008... Ann Arbor's WAAM radio makes lineup changes, gains in ratings (Sat, 3/7)


Toronto Star:

In the midst of an enduring slump by the Big Three automakers and a main street already pockmarked by empty store fronts, the last thing bordertown Windsor needs is to see its number one source of local television news go silent. What makes the imminent closure of CHWI-TV - the A-channel affiliate owned by CTV and slated to go off the air in August - even more puzzling is that the station has a loyal viewership three times the size of its only other Canadian competition, the CBC. As media companies face plunging earnings in a recession-wracked economy, the local news at noon, 6 and 11 p.m. may become the ultimate victim. "The viewers are puzzled and they don't understand, if the station has been so successful, why it's closing," said Cal Johnstone, A Channel's news director in the city of 200,000. "This is what's so crushing for Windsor now. We've built a following, a very faithful, loyal following," agreed anchor Jim Crichton... Throwing salt on Windsor's wounds (Sun, 3/8)


Former WQRS host Dick Wallace to guest on WRCJ FM 90.9 to help fundraiser

WRCJ will welcome back longtime friend and WQRS alumnus Dick Wallace who will reunite with fellow WQRS hosts Chris Felcyn and Dave Wagner for a limited engagement during the station's upcoming fundraiser to support Detroit's Classical & Jazz station. Dick is scheduled to be on 90.9 FM in the afternoons, bringing his inimitable style to WRCJ's Fall Membership Drive, March 26 through April 5.

Become a member or renew your membership on the station's secure website at or by calling (866) 909-9725.



Ann Arbor Radio Career Fair and Medical Career Fair set for March 26

As a pillar of Washtenaw County, Ann Arbor Radio is dedicated to it's listeners as well as branding and building businesses in the area. A healthy business always has quality employees. In that spirit, Ann Arbor Radio is holding a split Career Fair - Thursday March 26th 2009 at the Ann Arbor Marriott Ypsilanti at Eagle Crest located at 1275 South Huron Ypsilanti MI, 48197. The Career Fair is open to the public from 12 Noon to 7pm. The Career Fair will be divided into two rooms one side is dedicated to the medical industry the other side is open to all other employers.

Employers looking for qualified employees should know that Ann Arbor Radio reaches more than 250,000 people every week. Hundreds of listeners looking to change careers or seeking new careers and networking opportunities are expected at this event. The Ann Arbor Radio Career Fair is open to all employers in the area, and booth space is limited. To reserve your space, call Ann Arbor Radio at (734) 302-8100 or email Shannon Brown for more info at



Ann Arbor Radio adds staff

Ann Arbor Radio-Cumulus Media had added three new account executives Dean Erskine, Ira Weintraub and Marcie Van Black as of March 2nd.

A 35 year radio veteran, Ann Arbor native Dean Erskine was a Pioneer H.S. student when he got his start on WPAG, one of the original broadcast outlets of University of Michigan Football. Dean worked his way up from announcer to morning show host, eventually becoming program director and sales manager at stations in the Ann Arbor market. He also worked as a radio account executive in the Toledo market. Dean has overseen game day operations for University of Michigan football broadcasts, and also co-hosted the Michigan Football Tailgates with Lucy Ann Lance. He also owns Erskine Audio where he produces commercial and industrial voiceovers for nationwide clients. Dean's community work includes numerous hours volunteering at the Humane Society of Huron Valley.

Ira Weintraub age 33 has over 14 years of professional experience in the media, including more than 11 years in sports radio in the Washington, D.C. area, first at Sports Talk 980 then at Red Zebra Broadcasting's Redskins Radio. Marcie Van Black graduated Cum Laude from Eastern Michigan University in 2001. Her major was in Telecommunications & Film with a double minor in Marketing & Communications.



WDET to host town hall meeting with DPS emergency financial manager

Robert Bobb, emergency financial manager, Detroit Public Schools will be interviewed by Bankole Thompson, senior editor of The Michigan Chronicle and WDET-FM. This will be Bobb's first in-depth interview, and his first forum for the general public since taking the job, early this month, as emergency financial manager for the Detroit Public Schools. The event is free and open to the public.

The meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, March 25 at 7 p.m. at Wayne State University's Community Arts Auditorium, located on Reuther Mall, east of Anthony Wayne Drive, west of Cass Ave. and south of Palmer. Paid parking is available in Structure No. 1, north of the Community Arts Auditorium on Palmer or Structure No. 5 at the corner of Anthony Wayne Drive and W. Kirby. $3.50 in cash and coin is required at the automated gate.

The purpose of the Town Hall session is to provide the public with a thorough, incisive view into the school district evaluation process and to give the audience an opportunity to ask questions.

The audio from the event will be broadcast on WDET Radio, 101.9FM, on Thursday, March 26, at 10 a.m. and again at 7 p.m.Bankole Thompson will be host/producer with WDET's Noah Ovshinsky as co-producer.



Metro Times:

Bill Bonds may or may not be a classic, but there's no denying he's a doozy. "Got a second?" Detroit's most legendary TV newsman asks, laying down his phone to riffle through some papers. "Here's some names for you. Jimmy Hoffa. John F. Kennedy. Robert Kennedy. Ronald Reagan. George Wallace. Richard Nixon. Gerald Ford. Medgar Evers. Martin Luther King. Malcolm X. Bill Clinton. Do you know what they all have in common?" "Let me guess. They were all interviewed by Bill Bonds?" "That's right. And of those 11, six of them were shot and killed. Wallace was shot and paralyzed. Reagan was shot. Ford was shot at and missed. Clinton was impeached. Nixon should have been impeached, and if so he would have been found guilty. That's 11 guys I interviewed, more than once. And look what happened to them! So if Bill Bonds ever walks up to you and he's got a microphone, don't talk to him. Run the other way! Put that in your newspaper!" Well, I think I just will. The generation that recognizes the silver-topped baritone as pitchman for furniture chains and personal injury lawyers might wonder what the hell he's ranting about, but from the '67 riots until he left the Channel 7 (WXYZ) anchor desk in 1995, Bill Bonds was the face of television news in Detroit... TV party (Wed, 3/11)



WRIF wants to see your tatoos

Whether you have an angel, dragon, tribal design, butterfly, celtic knot or even an image of a family member adorning your skin, WRIF wants you to "Show Us Your Tats!" The new Show Us Your Tats section of allows listeners to upload images of their tattoos and share the stories behind them.

According to WRIF Program Director Mark Pennington, "Over the years we've seen listeners with some amazing tattoos and wanted to give them place to show them off."

Another feature of the Show Us Your Tats section is the ability for WRIF listeners to "rate" tattoos featured in the section on a scale of 1 to 10.


WLBY Ann Arbor making lineup changes effective Mar. 16; Lucy Ann Lance returning

On Monday, March 16th, AM 1290 WLBY will become Ann Arbor's Business Talk Radio. Cumulus management says the new format will serve the growing need for intelligent financial and business information in Washtenaw County.

"Talk radio doesn't have to be LEFT or RIGHT...but good for all. Dave Ramsey, Clark Howard and Lucy Ann Lance will provide that platform for Ann Arbor everyday on 1290 AM", commented Scott Meier, General Manager for Ann Arbor Radio.

With the addition of The Lucy Ann Lance Program M-F from 9am to 12pm (effective Monday, March 23rd), Business Talk 1290 WLBY will serve as a media platform for local business owners and organizations. Business Talk 1290 WLBY will provide relevant information for people who want to learn more about the global economic climate.

"Ann Arbor deserves a local Business Station... to help local business men and women tell their stories! We plan on providing a media platform for the good news of our community, from SPARK, the DDA, the local CVB's Chambers and startup companies", continued Meier.

The new Business Talk 1290 WLBY weekday lineup will feature Doug Stephan's Good Day from 4am to 9am, Lucy Ann Lance from 9am to 12pm (effective Monday, March 23rd), The Dave Ramsey Show from 2pm to 5pm and Clark Howard from 5pm to 8pm.


Detroit Free Press:

The love affair between metro Detroit and its vintage TV stars is a devoted one. Even in the YouTube era, the men and women who used to rule the cathode-ray tube are still the kings and queens of our hearts. That's one reason the exhibit opening today at the Detroit Historical Museum feels so right. "Detroit's Classic TV Personalities" pays tribute to a cross-section of broadcasting legends through the years -- entertainer Soupy Sales, the late movie host Bill Kennedy, local anchors Bill Bonds, Emery King and Amyre Makupson, and a duo that switched over from news to talk, John Kelly and Marilyn Turner. In the local celebrity galaxy, TV people hold a special place... Historical Museum presents tribute to Detroit's classic TV (Sat, 3/14)



Detroit News:

The February sweeps period proved to be a prosperous time for WDIV-TV (Channel 4). For the first time since May 2001, WDIV has the No. 1 newscast at 5 and 6 p.m., which are anchored by Carmen Harlan and Devin Scillian. It is a distinction WXYZ-TV (Channel 7) has boasted all this time thanks to its strong lead-in, "The Oprah Winfrey Show," until now. The sweeps period, which allows broadcasters to set ad rates, ended last week. In that time, WDIV's "Local 4 News at 5" garnered a 6.9 rating /14 share in Metro Detroit households. Ratings points represent 1 percent of the total viewership and the share represents the number of TVs in use. Each ratings point represents 19,270 local households. In comparison, WXYZ's "Action News 5 p.m." pulled a 6.5 rating /14 share... WDIV-TV takes lead in February sweeps (Fri, 3/13)



Final Four meets Economic Stimulus on The Ticket

To celebrate the March college basketball tournament in Detroit, "Twelve Mile Crossing at Fountain Walk, Novi's premiere entertainment and family fun destination, is joining with 97.1 The Ticket, for two Saturday events that will test hoop prowess for a chance to "Crack the Safe" and win $97,100.

"Crack the Safe" events will be held Saturday, March 21 from 5 to 7 p.m., and Saturday, March 28 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Twelve Mile Crossing at Fountain Walk's latest offering: Fusion Health & Fitness Club. 97.1 The Ticket on-air hosts Terry Foster and Bill McAllister will oversee the festivities, which will feature an opportunity, both nights, for participants to decipher a four-digit code to "crack" a Plexiglas safe and win the cash--if they can sink a specified number of free throws first.

"Fusion is all about taking a healthy approach to mind and body, so why not afford some individuals the opportunity to pump up their pocket books?" said Paul Wright, owner of Fusion Health & Fitness. "$97,100 will take anyone a long way towards fiscal fitness!"

Added Kim Peterson of Twelve Mile Crossing at Fountain Walk: "We wanted to do something fun and different in celebration of the madness that surrounds college basketball each March. With the tournament in Detroit this year and Fusion just opening with their brand new basketball court, the timing was ideal for these near six-figure festivities."

Potential safecrackers also will be registered for drawings for various prizes, including gift certificates to catch all the hoops action at Twelve Mile Crossing at Fountain Walk restaurants Bar Louie, Buffalo Wild Wings, Hooters and Lucky's.


Ann Arbor News:

WLBY, Ann Arbor's liberal talk radio station, will drop the Air America format Monday in favor of programming from the Business Talk Radio Network. The new Business Talk 1290 AM weekday lineup will feature the nationally-syndicated show "Doug Stephan's Good Day" from 4 to 9 a.m. That will be followed by local programming from Lucy Ann Lance from 9 a.m. to noon (effective March 23), the nationally-syndicated financial advice call-in program "The Dave Ramsey Show" from 2 to 5 p.m. and programming from national consumer advocate Clark Howard from 5 to 8 p.m. Lance's Saturday show, which began in January, will continue in the 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. time slot. Lou Perry's local call-in program will air from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday. General manager Scott Meier said the new format will serve a growing need for intelligent financial and business information in Washtenaw County. No change in call letters is planned. The station is owned by Cumulus Media, which also owns three other stations in this market: WQKL, WWWW and WTKA... Ann Arbor's WLBY to switch to programming from the Business Talk Radio Network (Sat, 3/14)


Detroit News:

Television anchorwoman Lila Lazarus and WJBK-TV (Channel 2) have parted ways. "She is no longer with the station. Her contract has not been renewed," a station spokeswoman said Tuesday. When asked why Channel 2 didn't pick up Lazarus' contract, the spokeswoman said WJBK had no comment. Lazarus, a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, the University of Michigan and Kalamazoo College, joined WJBK in March 2006. While at the local Fox affiliate, Lazarus worked as a morning anchor and health reporter. Before going to WJBK, Lazarus held a very similar job at WDIV-TV (Channel 4) where she worked for 10 years until 2005... Anchorwoman Lila Lazarus dropped from Channel 2 (Tue, 3/17)



WADL TV38 announces classic comedy block

WADL TV-38, marketed as Detroit's Urban TV station, will be adding new programming that includes legendary favorites to the station's spring line-up. The new additions to the classic TV programs the station is already airing will include: I Love Lucy, Happy Days, The Honeymooners, The Beverly Hillbillies and The Andy Griffith Show.

"The Classic Comedy Block will be a great family addition to our programming. These programs bring back great memories and we have the opportunity to make them available to all of our viewers," commented Denise Dody Johnson, WADL Marketing Director.

WYCD Hosts Online Auction For Make-A-Wish: CBS RADIO Country WYCD/DETROIT and GORDON CHEVROLET of DETROIT have partnered up for a special online auction benefiting the MAKE-A-WISH FOUNDATION of MICHIGAN. Bidding is taking place now through APRIL 8th at 11:59p (ET) at, on items like a DISNEY theme park flyaway for two, a guitar autographed by WYCD's "10 MAN JAM" artists and a hockey puck autographed by NICKLAS LIDSTROM of the DETROIT RED WINGS. Click here for more info. For more on the MAKE-A-WISH FOUNDATION of MICHIGAN, visit (Mon, 3/16)


Detroit News:

Former Detroit News TV writer Tim Kiska, guest curator for the "Detroit Classic TV Personalities" exhibit, has a new book out, "A Newscast for the Masses: The History of Detroit Television News" (Wayne State University Press, $24.95.) The book traces the history of broadcast news, going back to the first radio station in Detroit: WWJ, launched in 1920 by The Detroit News from a control panel in The News' garage. The News started Detroit's first TV station, WWJ-TV, on June 3, 1947. A year later, WJBK-TV and WXYZ-TV went on the air. To put things in perspective, Kiska reports that in the late '40s, Detroit stores were advertising TV sets ranging in price from $345 to $985. In today's dollars, that would amount to an astounding $2,552 to $8,383. The book recounts the facts in a scholarly way, but also includes stories about the wild early days of TV... New book traces history of Detroit television (Wed, 3/18)

Here's what you need to know about Detroit television: A literary genius couldn't make up the characters involved, from the wild and woolly early days of the 1950s up to the '80s, when focus groups and consultants took most of the spontaneity out of it. Now the Detroit Historical Museum is saluting Detroit's local flavor with an exhibit, "Detroit's Classic TV Personalities," running now through Labor Day. The exhibit highlights seven personalities.. Detroit's TV royalty (Wed, 3/18)

The planned live debate March 25 between Mayor Kenneth Cockrel Jr. and Dave Bing looks like it's off because the basketball icon is balking at a change in format from a forum to a one-on-one debate. Instead, a panel composed of representatives from The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press will participate in a question-and-answer session with the mayor for a live broadcast on WADL-TV (Channel 38). Bing has steadfastly been opposed to debating Cockrel unless Cockrel makes his personal finances public like the Pistons legend did months ago... Mayoral TV debate off; only Cockrel to appear (Wed, 3/18)

'Big Boy' Morphs To 'Chunky' At 92.3 NOW FM: Former CLEAR CHANNEL WKQI (CHANNEL 95.5)/DETROIT night stud BIG BOY has followed CBS VP/Top 40 Programming DOM THEODORE to NOO YAWK as the new 7-11p personality at CBS Top 40 WXRK (92.3 NOW FM). He's BIG BOY no more -- now using the nom de aire, CHUNKY. (Wed, 3/18)


Detroit News:

There's one less liberal radio station in southeastern Michigan since Ann Arbor's Cumulus -owned WLBY-AM (1290 ) has dumped its affiliation with Air America and flipped formats to "business talk and news." Local liberal talk host Lou Perry will keep his 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday talk/call-in show on WLBY. He managed to escape the ax because he has solid advertiser support (Suburban Collection, Big Boy) and a base of listeners. Perry is marking his 45th year in broadcasting, and he bills his Sunday show on WLBY as the "only" live progressive talk show in southeastern Michigan. Peter Werbe would have a bone to pick with that claim, since Werbe is in his 38th year of hosting "Nightcall," the live call-in/talk show that airs from 11 p.m.-2 a.m. on Detroit rock station WRIF-FM (101.1) . And certainly Mitch Albom may be the lone progressive at WJR-AM (760 ), but he's there ... Speaking of money, Arthur Penhallow has been off the WRIF-FM (101.1) airwaves since his contract expired in February. Greater Media general manager John Gallagher says he'll probably talk to Penhallow today or tomorrow to see what the basso-voiced vet wants to do... Liberal host survives WLBY format changes (Thu, 3/19)

Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit will host WRIF's "Screamin" Scott Randall as part of its 2009 "Bowling for Jobs" campaign to fight unemployment across Metro Detroit. Randall will be on-site (at Taylor Lanes) from 1-4 p.m. Sunday with T-shirts and other giveaways while cheering on the bowlers who have come to help their friends and neighbors find jobs... 'Bowling for Jobs' fundraiser to feature WRIF's Randall (Thu, 3/19)


Detroit News:

WJBK-TV (Channel 2) is still No. 1 in the morning according to the ratings. The station's early-riser show "Fox 2 News Morning" grabbed the top spot during the February sweeps period, which came to an end earlier this month. Sweeps numbers are used to set advertising rates. Nationally, many markets are measuring ratings results accrued this month, per the suggestion of Nielsen Media Research. The Illinois-based firm made the change from February to March this year because of the original digital conversion date and stuck to it even after the government's delay to June. As a result of the delay, markets like Detroit are still looking at February ratings to better compare annual increases and deficits between 2008 and 2009... WJBK dominates Metro Detroit morning television ratings (Fri, 3/20)

Taking a page from the Jay Leno book of economic relief for recession-punched Detroiters, Dr. Phil McGraw will make two free appearances in Detroit next month. Appropriately, he'll talk about how to meet the challenges of living with purpose when times are tough. McGraw, the opinionated host of the popular "Dr. Phil" show, which airs on Channel 62 (WWJ), will appear at 7:30 p.m. on April 1 at the Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts and at 2 p.m. onApril 2 at I Am My Brother's Keeper Ministry... Dr. Phil to host two free TV tapings in Detroit (Fri, 3/20)

There's a patio! He can see it! Right there, out the window of his downtown sub shop! "Omigod," says Ron Cameron, the semi-famous, downwardly mobile sportscaster, "it's bigger than I thought!" He's been prepping the shop for weeks, getting ready for yesterday's opening. You'd think he might have counted the number of circular concrete tables on the patio before -- six, plus two wide benches. But he's always been better at imagination than details, and besides, surprises are exciting! Cameron, 64, is like a human nail gun, spitting out exclamation points. Two guys in their 30s walk past on Washington Boulevard, headed for a Red Wings game, and they're both wearing Nicklas Lidstrom jerseys. "That's interesting!" he says ... Thirty years ago, the games made him a star. He had a sports talk show on what's now WXYT-AM (1270), and he pulled serious ratings. From 1984-91, in the early days of cable, he and Bob Page hosted a show called "Sports View"... Ex-big leaguer's subs could be a hit (Fri, 3/20)



Hospice of Michigan documentary to air on Detroit Public Television Monday, March 23 and Sunday, March 29

Hospice of Michigan, one of the nation's leading non-profit hospice organizations, has produced a documentary film called Except for Six that will be televised on Detroit Public Television on Monday, March 23 from 9 - 10 pm, and on Sunday, March 29 from 4:30 - 5:30 pm.

Beginning with a strong desire to illuminate a tough subject -- dying -- and change the way people think about end-of-life, Hospice of Michigan embarked on creating a documentary that would be engaging and honest about one of the most important life passages. Except for Six tells the story of three people who are living with terminal illnesses, shows choices they make, and the individual ways they choose to live out their lives.

The documentary has been previewed by individuals from within the documentary film industry, including award-winning documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, who said of the film, "This is a heart-felt and important film that takes a subject that most of us would rather ignore and humanizes it. From the dedicated doctors and caregivers to the heroic patients, this is the story of what will happen to all of us."

"Storytelling is the best way to share information and get people to see subjects in new ways," said Dottie Deremo, president and CEO of Hospice of Michigan. "The documentary film, Except for Six, uses humor and emotion to tell the moving stories of three people, and hopefully will get the viewer thinking about a topic they might otherwise avoid. We are very excited that the documentary will be televised on Detroit Public Television, and we hope people will watch."

The film was directed by Matt Burnell, a young filmmaker from Grand Rapids. He and his crew spent many hours with the patients and families whose stories are told in the documentary. Burnell said, "In a very short time, the patients and their families became accustomed to us being there, and we had the privilege of observing this very special time. As a result, we are able to share one of life's most natural events with the audience."

The title of the documentary, Except for Six, has a double meaning. Ron Christie, the 69-year-old man whose story is told in the film, spoke behind-the-scenes about the importance and value he placed on the "six people who carry you to your final resting place." In hospice care, patients are referred to a hospice program when it is believed they have six months or fewer to live.

The film was edited locally by Derek Swanson of Mad River Post in Royal Oak.

Hospice of Michigan is one of the leading non-profit hospice organizations in the country, and the state's largest hospice organization serving more than 900 patients every day. Hospice of Michigan's mission is to care for all who need and seek our care regardless of age, diagnosis, or ability to pay. The documentary film Except for Six is part of a public awareness campaign from Hospice of Michigan called "Have You Had the Talk?" For more information about the campaign, go to Hospice of Michigan, with headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, and offices located in 17 communities, serves patients and their families in more than 60 counties in the state of Michigan.


For the first time, FOX Sports Detroit's collection of channels will present simultaneous telecasts of the same game, but from two different perspectives, when the Pistons take on the Los Angeles Lakers at the Palace on Thursday, March 26. The traditional game coverage will appear on FOX Sports Detroit and in high-definition on FOX Sports Detroit HD. Meanwhile, FOX Sports Detroit PLUS presents a "Match-up Cam" telecast, with devoted cameras isolating on key battles throughout the game among the many stars on each team.

"We are looking forward to this unique, creative and compelling use of our PLUS service," said Greg Hammaren, Senior Vice President/General Manager, FOX Sports Detroit. "We hope fans that are enjoying the traditional high-quality telecast on our main service will be intrigued to sample PLUS to see an isolated view of just how hard these great athletes work during the course of a game."

Coverage on all channels begins at 6:30 PM with Pistons Insider, followed by Pistons Live at 7:00 and the game at 7:30. Game audio will be the same on all channels with play-by-play announcer George Blaha, analyst Greg Kelser, along with sideline reporters Ryan Field and Eli Zaret. Field hosts Pistons Live pregame, while Mickey York hosts the postgame edition.

For FOX Sports PLUS channel numbers, visit



Grand Rapids Press:

If you want to watch unbeaten Catholic Central and Lakeview compete in a Class B semifinal at 6 p.m. Friday for a spot in Saturday's girls basketball state championship - and you cannot make it to Eastern Michigan University's Convocation Center - you can follow it live on the Internet. The Michigan High School Athletic Association Network will stream video of all four Class A and Class B semifinals at MHSAA.TV. Semifinal games also will be available finals for cable viewing on Comcast Channel 900, pending availability of the station's time... (Fri, 3/20)


Ann Arbor Radio adds daily business program hosted Lucy Ann Lance

Ann Arbor's Business Talk 1290 WLBY (WLBY-AM) has added well known Ann Arbor radio personality Lucy Ann Lance to it's weekday lineup. "The Lucy Ann Lance Business Insider" airs Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm.

Ann Arbor Radio says "The Lucy Ann Lance Business Insider" is Michigan's most comprehensive business radio show, taking listeners from Main Street to Wall Street. The show includes conversations with reporters from Michigan Business Review, innovative speakers from SPARK, business educators from the University of Michigan and Eastern Michigan University, commentaries from local business people, business ideas from entrepreneurs, and updates from the area's Chambers of Commerce.

From high-tech to health care, automotive and retail, "The Lucy Ann Lance Business Insider" plans on putting its listeners on the inside on Michigan's business news.



Detroit Free Press:

WEMU-FM (89.1), Eastern Michigan University's public radio station, will broadcast part of its spring pledge drive live from Ann Arbor's Michigan Theater. The fun begins at 6 a.m. Friday with a special edition of film segment "Cinema Chat." Russ Collin, the Michigan Theater's executive director, and Debra Polich, president of Artrain, will join WEMU's David Fair in asking for pledges for three hours during NPR's "Morning Edition"... Names and Faces (Mon, 3/23)

WYCD Hosts Online Auction For Make-A-Wish: CBS RADIO Country WYCD/DETROIT and GORDON CHEVROLET of DETROIT have partnered up for a special online auction benefiting the MAKE-A-WISH FOUNDATION of MICHIGAN. Bidding is taking place now through APRIL 8th at 11:59p (ET) at, on items like a DISNEY theme park flyaway for two, a guitar autographed by WYCD's "10 MAN JAM" artists and a hockey puck autographed by NICKLAS LIDSTROM of the DETROIT RED WINGS. Click here for more info. For more on the MAKE-A-WISH FOUNDATION of MICHIGAN, visit (Mon, 3/16)


George Kell, Baseball Hall of Famer and popular broadcaster dies at age 86

George Kell, Hall of Fame baseball player for the Detroit Tigers among other teams, has died at the age of 86 in his hometown of Swifton, Arkansas according to various broadcast reports. In addition to his successful playing career, Kell was also an immensely popular broadcaster for the Tigers, both on radio and television. That portion of his baseball career lasted 37 years. His most memorable broadcasting work was on TV on Channel 4 during the years he was paired with fellow hall-of-famer Al Kaline in the booth. Kell also partnered with the legendary Ernie Harwell.

Kell's playing career was from 1943-57 and he was with the Tigers from 1946-52. He also played for the Philadelphia Athletics, Boston Red Sox, Baltimore Orioles, and Chicago White Sox and was induced into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1983. He was a career .306 hitter, won the American League batting championship in 1949, and was a 10-time All-Star.



FOX Sports Detroit to re-air 2005 special in memory of George Kell

FOX Sports Detroit joins Tigers fans everywhere in mourning the passing of Hall of Fame third baseman and longtime Tigers broadcaster George Kell.

Tune in Wednesday (7:30 & 10:00 pm) and Sunday (12:30 & 4:00 pm) for an encore presentation of the 2005 half-hour special "FSN Basement: All-Star Edition," featuring interviews with Kell and Al Kaline, each recalling their numerous All-Star Game appearances, special memories of playing for the Tigers and their several years working together in the television booth.

Also, FOX Sports Detroit announcers Mario Impemba and John Keating provided tributes to Kell:

- From Mario Impemba, Tigers play-by-play announcer, FOX Sports Detroit: "Growing up in Detroit, Mr. Kell had a big impact on my desire to become a broadcaster. He had a unique voice that featured a smooth southern charm. People knew they were watching Tigers baseball when they heard George's voice every summer."

- From John Keating, TIGERS LIVE host, FOX Sports Detroit: "One of the highlights of my broadcasting career was our trip to interview George at his home in Swifton, Arkansas.... just to talk baseball and his place in Detroit's sporting history. He was gracious and warm to those of us who were still involved with the Tigers. He still watched every Tigers game and enjoyed it with no regrets about stepping away from the broadcast booth. To those of us who grew up with George and Al and Ernie and Paul Carey, they shaped the standard for broadcasting sports in our town. It is less of a 'bright and sunshiny day' in Michigan."



WDET's Town Hall Meeting with Robert Bobb scheduled for tomorrow, Wednesday, March 25, 2009, has been canceled due to a personal emergency. Mr. Bobb asked WDET to reschedule the Town Hall Meeting to a later date, but is still expected to take place at the Community Arts Auditorium of Wayne State University, as previously planned. Listen to 101.9 WDET for information about the new date of the Town Hall Meeting with Robert Bobb and check back to for updated details.


Troubled economy claims two from Purtan's People

John 'Ankles' Stewart and Dana Mills, both longtime contributors to Dick Purtan's morning program heard on oldies WOMC FM 104.3, have been let go as part of cutbacks by CBS Radio. Stewart was the longtime engineer and Mills the news anchor. Their last day with WOMC was yesterday.

Profiles of the duo remained on the WOMC web site this morning:

Born and raised in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, John Stewart started his radio career in 1974 in Ottawa at CFGO. Two years later, he moved a little closer to home and continued his profession at the Big 8, CKLW in downtown Windsor where he was the FM Production Director. There he worked with the likes of Super Max, Brother Bill Gable, World Famous Pat Holiday, Johnny Williams and Deano Day. In 1978, Dick Purtan arrived on the scene and asked John to fill in for a vacationing engineer. Since then, we have all become accustomed to his contagious laugh and Canadian wit filling the radio airwaves on the Dick Purtan Show.

In December 1983, John became known to the faithful listening audience as "Ankles." Being a Lions fan and desperately trying to receive a blacked out game; he experimented with the reception on his TV by adjusting the antenna. The only thing he adjusted were the bones in his ankle after falling off the roof. As the Morning Show engineer, Ankles is the man who pushes all of the right buttons - usually. But if you hear a mistake on the air, undoubtedly it was John's fault. However, as any regular listener of the Purtan Show knows, Ankles' main responsibility is providing a "live" laugh track to support Purtan and Purtan's People's brand of humor, even when the material isn't very funny. That takes a professional laugher.

Dana Mills is the News Director and News Anchor on "The Dick Purtan Show" on WOMC. She was born and raised in Akron, Ohio. She started her radio career in her hometown, worked in radio and television in Cleveland, then moved to Denver where she lived and worked in radio and TV for 11 years. Dana came to Detroit in 1993 to be the co-host of the Afternoon News Center on WJR . She later joined Dick Purtan and Purtan's People in April of 1996.

Dana has also added several voice characterizations to the show. So, after years of building up a respected journalistic portfolio, Dana has thrown it all down the drain by doing silly voices. Dana has also gained a following with her popular feature "At Home With Dana Mills", which offers Martha Stewart-like tips to listeners. The big difference between Dana and Martha is that people laugh with Dana - and that's a good thing.

Dana has one daughter, 16 year old Samantha. They enjoy Tennis, golf, skiing and spending time "up north" together. They also love their little Lhasa Apso, Missy. Dana Mills and all of Purtan's People can be heard on "The Dick Purtan Show" from 5am to 10am on WOMC.

Purtan commented on the departures during this morning's program, saying that yesterday was a very sad day and wishing the duo well as they continue their careers. Purtan also said the decisions were made by someone higher up in the chain of command at CBS radio.



Detroit Public TV switching off analog transmitter April 16; nearing end of capital campaign

WTVS Channel 56 has filed with the FCC plans to terminate its analog over-the-air signal on April 16th and shift to all-digital transmission. The move is in advance of the new June date that many of the rest of the state's TV station's will follow. Detroit Public TV has been warning viewers that its analog transmitter is nearing the end of its lifespan and that the switch to all-digital would likely be happening before June, possibly without warning.

The Campaign for Detroit Public Television is nearing its goal of raising $22 million dollars by March 31st and at last report was about $500,000 shy of a mark that will kick in a $1.25 grant from Kresge Foundation to complete the effort. Visit to contribute or for more information.



Familiar voices lend hand to help WRCJ fundraiser

Classical/Jazz WRCJ 90.9 is welcoming back WQRS alumni Dick Wallace and Carl Grapentine for some guest hosting in support of the station's spring fundraising drive, which started today and runs through April 5th. Carl Grapentine, who is also the public address announcer for University of Michigan football in addition to hosting mornings at classical WFMT Chicago, will host on 90.9 FM on Saturday, March 28, from 1-4 p.m., and Dick Wallace will be the afternoon music host from 4-7 p.m., from March 30 to April 3.

More info on WRCJ's fundraiser is available at

CJAM/Windsor Gets OK To Change Frequencies: The UNIVERSITY OF WINDSOR has received CRTC approval to move its CJAM/WINDSOR, ON from 91.5 to 99.1 FM, reducing power from 914 to 456 watts and going from a directional low-power station without interference protectionto an omnidirectional Class A facility with protection. The move follows negotiations with the FCC and CANADA's Department of Industry to allow the station to change frequencies due to the addition of a noncommercial station on 91.5 FM in CHINA TWP., MI, granted to SMILE FM. (Thu, 3/26)

WYCD Offers A Swift Experience: CBS RADIO Country WYCD/DETROIT is launching the "TAYLOR SWIFT Fearless Experience." The interactive mobile promotional vehicle features TAYLOR memorabilia and music, such as the dress she wore in the "Our Song" video, behind-the-scenes video, tons of photos and more. In addition, fans can sing karaoke to their favorite TAYLOR song and sign a guest book that will be presented to her this summer. The unit will visit shopping malls, schools, festivals and community events throughout the summer, with specific location information being announced on WYCD. MOTOR CITY area high school students are encouraged to visit and enter to have the "TAYLOR SWIFT Fearless Experience" brought to their high school. While at their school, students can compete in a High School TAYLOR SWIFT Karaoke Contest and one lucky winner will win a trip for two to the CMA MUSIC FEST this summer in NASHVILLE. They will also have the chance to show off their vocal skills in front of a BIG MACHINE/NASHVILLE music executive. Visit the website for complete contest rules. (Thu, 3/26)

Ticket/Detroit's Bigby Adds OM Duties For The Fan/Dallas: CBS RADIO VP of Strategic Programming and Sports WXYT-A-F (97.1 THE TICKET)/DETROIT PD TOM BIGBY adds duties as Operations Manager at sister Sports KRLD-F (105.3 THE FAN)/DALLAS, effective MARCH 30. BIGBY will work with PD GAVIN SPITTLE to run the station, which flipped from Talk earlier this year. BIGBY worked in the DALLAS market at Oldies KLUV and News-Talk KRLD-A, and was formerly PD at Sports WIP-A/PHILADELPHIA ... "TOM's vision and outstanding leadership skills quickly helped establish 97.1 THE TICKET," said DETROIT Market Manager DEB KENYON. "I have no doubt he will have a similar impact in the Dallas market. TOM is truly a difference maker." (Wed, 3/25)

Dymond Named Market Mgr. At Connoisseur/Erie: Former RADIO ONE DETROIT GSM NANCY DYMOND lands at CONNOISSEUR's ERIE cluster as Market Manager. DYMOND has been consulting DETROIT PUBLIC TELEVISION since exiting RADIO ONE; she previously served as Market Manager for CUMULUS' FLINT cluster, VP/GM at FRITZ BROADCASTING's LANSING and SAGINAW stations, and VP/GM at REAMS BROADCASTING's TOLEDO and FLINT stations.(Wed, 3/25)


Are Arthur Penhallow's days over at WRIF?

After 39 years holding down afternoon drive on rock WRIF Detroit, dating back to when the station was WXYZ-FM, it appears that contract talks between the Grand Poobah of Detroit rock and WRIF owner Greater Media might have broken down. Early this morning Penhallow posted on his Facebook page the following message, "It appears that my days in Detroit radio are over for now. Thanks for your support over the last 39 years....I shall return." The revelation has been followed by numerous messages of support and surprise.

If there isn't a last-minute solution, it'll complete what amounts to a complete overhaul of the weekday lineup at WRIF over the past couple of years. The first big shake-up was the departure of Drew Lane from the morning program, leaving Mike Clark. Doug Podell recently stepped down from middays, replaced by Anne Carlini, and now it appears that the afternoon drive slot will have to be filled by someone new for the first time since 1970 on 101.1 FM. Penhallow has been off the WRIF airwaves for over a month already as contract negotiations were underway - his prior deal ended in February.



The Oakland Press:

The 2009 Pistons Care Telethon, which culminated in a 17-hour telethon day and telecast of the team's game on March 11, raised more than $450,000 in pledges to benefit Feed The Children, with 100 percent of proceeds going to families in critical need of food and basic necessities throughout the state of Michigan. The pledge total will allow FTC to help sustain 25,000 families with food and personal care items... Pistons Care Telethon nets $450K in pledges (Thu, 3/26)



Detroit News:

Charles Pugh is officially leaving WJBK-TV (Channel 2). The former weekend anchor and reporter says Thursday was his last day at the Fox affiliate. Pugh could not be reached for comment, but on his Facebook page he posted the following message: "The transition has BEGUN!!! The big announcement is coming." A WJBK spokeswoman confirms that Pugh is leaving the station and says that he will return as a special guest on "Fox 2 News Weekend" Saturday to announce and confirm future plans... Charles Pugh leaves WJBK (Fri, 3/27)

Detroit Public Television, WTVS-TV (Channel 56), has five days to raise the money the local PBS affiliate needs to complete its historic $22 million capital campaign and prepare for the industry's digital future by June. So far, DPTV has raised $20.15 million. That puts the station less than $500,000 away from fulfilling its campaign obligations, which would trigger a $1.25 million Kresge Foundation challenge grant. DPTV has until Tuesday to make this happen... WTVS-TV is close to its goal (Fri, 3/27)



Detroit Free Press:

In these difficult times, Americans are looking for institutions they can trust, and that offer real value to their lives, the lives of their families and to their local communities. For 53 years, Detroit Public Television (Channel 56) has met that important standard in this community. With your help and your loyalty, DPTV and PBS have offered what has become the most trusted content on television for six years in a row, according to the national Roper Study. And we now make that content extensively available online, too. I am enthusiastic about serving as chair of the DPTV Board of Trustees, and to lead such a vital institution. Even in an era of more channels and more media than ever before, DPTV's average viewership has grown by more than 4% in prime time this season -- fastest of any public station in the top 20 metropolitan areas. It is an audience of 1.6 million people a week depending on public television for independence and wholesome programming that uplifts, rather than degrades... Help Detroit Public TV tune in to future (Fri, 3/27)

Want to take a ride with the No. 1 artist in the country? WYCD-FM (99.5) will debut the Taylor Swift Fearless Experience, an interactive mobile promotional unit showcasing Swift memorabilia and music, at 10:30 a.m. today at Lake Shore High School in St. Clair Shores. The rolling museum, says Tim Roberts, WYCD program director, is filled with cool stuff. The promotion includes a karaoke contest, and the grand prize winner gets to fly to Nashville to be on the Great American Country cable channel and sing for music executives at Big Machine, Swift's label ... WRCJ-FM (90.9), Detroit's classical and jazz music station, is holding its spring membership drive through April 5. As part of the drive, Dick Wallace and Carl Grapentine -- well-known to Detroit listeners from their years on the former classical music station WQRS-FM (105.1) -- are holding down guest-host slots on the public radio station... Names and Faces (Fri, 3/27)



Ann Arbor News:

WEMU, Eastern Michigan University's public radio station (89.1 FM) is taking its show on the road with a live pledge drive broadcast from the Michigan Theater. Live fundraising, which began Friday, continues at the Michigan Saturday from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. On Sunday, Arwulf Arwulf will be live with Sunday Best from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Thursday live broadcasts take place 9 a.m.-4 p.m. each day... WEMU fund drive comes to Michigan Theater (Fri, 3/27)



Windsor Star:

CBC will reduce its English radio staff in Windsor by seven positions in May, but the morning and afternoon shows will stay on the air. There will also be layoffs at CBET-Channel 9, but the actual number won't be known until mid-April when a retirement incentive program is rolled out. While Windsor's Early Shift, hosted by Tony Doucette, and Barbara Peacock's Crosstown will remain on the air, the midday Ontario Today program out of Ottawa will be cut from two hours to one. Windsor's 6 p.m. newscast on Channel 9 won't be affected by cuts announced Thursday by Richard Stursberg, CBC's executive vice-president of English services. A total of 80 news positions were cut, along with 313 more in sports, entertainment, current affairs and support staff... CBC English radio to cut seven positions (Fri, 3/27)

Windsor's Channel 9 is safe for now, but jobs will be lost in the wake of Wednesday's announcement that CBC will slash 800 jobs from its payroll by mid-May. Six French-language jobs in Windsor are already gone, said a local union spokeswoman, and as many as eight more English jobs could vanish today. Celine Pelletier, president of Windsor's Canadian Media Guild local, said French TV and radio will be cut from nine employees to three as part of a network-wide move to save $171 million in operating costs. CBC president Hubert Lacroix told employees Wednesday up to 393 jobs will be cut in English radio and TV, with another 336 in French and 73 corporate positions. As well, the network plans to sell off $125 million worth of assets. But Jeff Keay, a CBC spokesman in Toronto, said that won't mean TV stations like Windsor's CBET (channel 9, cable 10)... CBC to spare local station (Thu, 3/26)


Detroit Free Press:

Detroit mayoral candidate Dave Bing spent nearly twice as much as Mayor Ken Cockrel Jr. on radio and TV advertising in the two weeks before the Feb. 24 special primary, campaign finance reports show. The reports, which became available Friday, show Bing spent $350,691 on broadcast advertising between Feb. 9 and Feb. 24, while Cockrel spent $195,600. The spending dwarfed efforts by other candidates, including that of Freman Hendrix, who spent $173,330 on his entire campaign... Bing leader on TV, radio ad spending in Detroit mayoral race (Sat, 3/28)



Detroit News:

Mayor Kenneth Cockrel Jr. and businessman Dave Bing will participate in a live televised debate April 23 on WXYZ-TV (Channel 7), station officials announced tonight. The debate is set for 8-9 p.m. and is co-sponsored by the Michigan Chronicle, WJR and 92.3 WMXD. The two candidates have agreed to debate in front of the Detroit Economic Club on April 13 or 15, Bing campaign officials said... Cockrel, Bing to debate live on WXYZ-TV (Thu, 3/26)


Detroit Free Press:

The Free Press will soon be coming to a television screen near you. In a new venture, the Free Press and WWJ-TV, the CBS affiliate in Detroit, will partner to produce news segments during the station's "First Forecast Mornings" segment beginning in May. With the station providing traffic and weather updates, the Free Press will provide news headlines and other material between 5 a.m. and 7 a.m. Beyond headlines, the segments will feature exclusive Free Press stories across a range of topics. "Everybody's going to want to know the water-cooler talk, a great news story, a sports team won, a tragedy or whatever it is," said Trey Fabacher, vice president and general manager of WWJ-TV. "Who better to give those top couple of stories" than the Free Press? he asked. Nancy Andrews, Free Press managing editor of digital media, called the TV segments "the next logical step forward" as the paper creates ways to reach its audience... Free Press will join WWJ-TV for reports (Sun, 3/29)


Split between Penhallow and WRIF now official

After 39 years, it appears that Arthur Penhallow can now be referred to as the former afternoon drive jock at WRIF-FM. Off the air since February, things seemed to be coming to a head last week when Penhallow posted a message on Facebook that his time at WRIF was over. Negotiations over the weekend didn't result in an agreement, and as of today 'Rif's website has been scrubbed of Penhallow's presence.

No word as of yet on who might be take over afternoon drive on a permanent basis, but for now at least it appears that Meltdown, who shifted from evenings, will continue to hold down the shift.

As for Penhallow, a Facebook status entered on Sunday reads, "Reality is starting to settle in and with it comes sadness and madness but with the outpouring of your support I am strong. Thank you all and God Bless you all. A new chapter begins and you'll be the first to know. Much Love!".




WWJ-TV, the CBS-owned station in Detroit, will launch First Forecast Mornings, a new live, local program weekdays from 5:00-7:00 a.m., beginning Tuesday, May 5. Targeting the growing and highly-mobile early morning viewing audience in Detroit, the program will deliver an ongoing report of current and forecasted weather as well as the most current conditions on area roads. Viewers will be able to tune in and quickly get the information they need from the program before they head for the door or make plans for the day. Data will be acquired using some of the newest and most-powerful weather software in the market along with sophisticated traffic mapping and direct links to the area's numerous traffic cameras operated by the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT)... Morning Weather and Traffic Coming to WWJ-TV (Mon, 3/30)



Public radio stations in Michigan to air special call-in program with Governor Granholm on Wednesday

Michigan Governor Jennifer M. Granholm will take telephone calls from across the state during a live call-in show to air on Michigan Public Radio Network stations, on Wednesday, April 1, from 9 to 10 a.m.

"Michigan, What's On Your Mind? An Hour with Governor Jennifer Granholm" will be hosted by Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network managing editor and state capitol bureau chief. The call-in program will have an open format, with the governor fielding questions from listeners on a variety of topics. The governor is expected to focus on the turmoil in the automobile industry and her economic plans for Michigan.

Listener phone calls will be accepted during the program by calling toll-free (877) 952-7870.



Detroit News:

Did he stay or did he go? He went. Veteran WRIF-FM (101.1) afternoon air personality Arthur Penhallow is leaving the station. Despite months of negotiation, Greater Media and Penhallow were unable to come to an agreement on a new contract. Penhallow has been off the air since February.

"I left with my honor, dignity and integrity intact. I still love WRIF and most of the people who work there," Penhallow said. "All the support staff, the people on the air ... I just couldn't come to an agreement with the upper echelon."

"We are disappointed that we couldn't come to a contractual agreement with Arthur," said John Gallagher, Greater Media Detroit market manager, in a statement. "He is obviously a legend in the market and his many years of service to the industry are deeply appreciated. He will be sorely missed"... WRIF's Arthur Penhallow leaving (Mon, 3/30)

Mildred Gaddis presides over a lively talk show from 6-10 a.m. weekdays on WCHB-AM (1200). Known for her fiery attacks on ex-Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick last year, she has surprised some with her opposition to the deal to expand Cobo Center. Is your friend Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson mad at you because you don't support the Cobo deal? L. Brooks Patterson has always respected my right to be wherever I choose to be on a particular issue. I saw him recently. I said, "Why don't you stop giving me a doggone heart attack, you've got the people crazed," and he just laughed. L. Brooks Patterson has done for the residents of Oakland County exactly what he should have done. Ken Cockrel has not done the same for Detroit... 3 Minutes with Mildred in the Morning (Mon, 3/30)


Detroit Free Press:

So long, baaaby! Arthur Penhallow, the deep-voiced DJ who has been a fixture at WRIF-FM (101.1) for 39 years, has parted ways with the station. But the legendarily rowdy personality who helmed the afternoon drive at Detroit's signature rock station said Monday he's not ready for retirement just yet. According to a WRIF press release Monday afternoon, the station said it was moving on without Penhallow, variously known as Arthur P, the Grand Poobah and Big Daddy. Along with being the station's most senior employee, Penhallow was a signature voice (and sometimes face) for WRIF's commercials and marketing promotions -- particularly the booming catchphrase baaaby! ... Penhallow referred to his time at the station as "39 charmed years." "I'm sad to be leaving, for sure," he added. "But I'm leaving with all my honor, dignity and integrity." Dick Kernen, now vice president/industry relations for the Specs Howard School of Broadcast Arts, was program director at 101.1 when he hired the station's first on-air talent 39 years ago: Penhallow. Kernen now calls him one of a dozen or so distinctive personalities in Detroit radio history, along with Dick Purtan and Jim Harper... Bye-bye baby; Arthur Penhallow leaves WRIF (Tue, 3/31)







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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Metro Detroit category from March 2009.

Metro Detroit: February 2009 is the previous archive.

Metro Detroit: April 2009 is the next archive.

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