A Format Flip, and a Format End

Two changes, and only one involving an actual transmitter:

NORWALK SPORTS: OMW actually got a tip about this last night, and it’s now been confirmed by a reader in the region. Elyria-Lorain Broadcasting oldies WLKR/1510 Norwalk has flipped from that format to sports, using ESPN Radio.

The daytime sister of AC WLKR/95.3 and country WKFM/96.1 Huron had been using the Dial-Global (ex-Westwood One) oldies format, making it the second loss in Northern Ohio for one of the company’s satellite formats in the past few days. As reported below, D-G’s Adult Standards format is no longer heard at all on Akron’s WAKR/1590.

Fans of the D-G oldies format should, at last check, be able to hear it if they’re within range of local affiliate WKVX/960 out of Wooster. The two stations don’t really have much listenable overlap, though, as WKVX is kind of staticky by the time it gets up to Norwalk.

There would appear to be only one problem with the new “ESPN 1510”. As a sports station, it won’t be able to sell live Friday night high school football games…as it’s a daytimer with no night authorization. But maybe it’ll be able to do local games that are on Saturday afternoons…

A DELAYED FORMAT DEATH: Much was made of the end of over-air broadcasting by iconic alt-rocker WOXY/97.7 Oxford, the Cincinnati market outlet made famous by the mention of its slogan in the movie “Rain Man”.

The station’s owners funded their retirement – and rightfully so, in our eyes – by selling 97.7 to First Broadcasting, which operates it today as part of the adult hits trimulcast “MAX FM”.

(By the way, thanks to long-time Friend of OMW Scott Fybush for earlier pointing out the continued presence of the third station in that trio, co-channel WAXZ/97.7 Georgetown OH. We believe at some point, that station will be moved somewhat away from Cincinnati to allow WOXY to nudge into a new COL at the Cincinnati suburb of Mason, but we don’t believe it’s happened yet.)

Anyway, when “97X” exited 97.7 in Oxford, it landed with much fanfare as an Internet-based operation. At least some of the reasoning behind was to capitalize on its worldwide fan base and reputation.

A fan base and reputation apparently don’t pay the bills, as the staffers report the webcast will go dark on September 15th…barring any unforeseen infusion of massive amounts of money. (You know it’s an alt-rock station when the announcement of its end starts: “This sucks.”)

The WOXY folks started charging for subscriptions a while back, but the money just wasn’t there to keep it afloat…

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