The Friday Mix

UPDATE 6/26/11 1:30 AM: In sorting through the various awards recently handed out for Kent State University public radio outlet WKSU/89.7-and-its-simulcasters, we missed this individual award from the Ohio Professional Writers, Inc. (OPW), the state affiliate of the National Federation of Press Women (NFPW).

And we feel bad about missing it, as it mentions “one of our own”, the woman who is the conduit of all information about WKSU, who happens to have a more important title than just the one we gave her – “OMW Handler”:

First Place, Marketing/Public Information Categories:

-Online Newsletters, Interim Director of Marketing and Public Relations Ann VerWiebe for “Folk Alley Chat”

Our apologies for missing this earlier, and congratulations, Ann! Being as modest as she is, Ann did not specifically point her own award…

NOTE: We intended to post this on Thursday, but ran into major connectivity issues, so here it is on Friday…


We couldn’t help it…after all, Clear Channel’s 106.5 left “Mix” on the side of the road when it dipped into the Lake…

HOUSTON, YOU HAVE MATT: The journey of local radio personality Matt Patrick’s second radio career doing conservative talk is bringing him to a top 10 market.

That’s Houston, where Matt will actually move soon, starting a weekday show on an as-of-yet named station.

Matt will exit his show in South Bend IN, where he’s been doing “Michiana’s Morning News” weekday mornings on WTRC-FM/95.3 “95.3 MNC”, staying both in South Bend and in his hometown of Hudson.

Though the Patrick Clan will indeed be actually be moving to Texas, Matt tells OMW that it won’t affect his weekend work on two Ohio Clear Channel stations – talk WTAM/1100 Cleveland, where he occupies the Saturday 1-4 PM slot, and the original “Big One”, WLW/700 Cincinnati, where he does occasional fill-in. Both, of course, will be via the electronic magic of ISDN lines after Patrick moves to Houston.

That WLW fill-in includes subbing for WLW’s biggest name, Bill Cunningham, on Friday, Monday and Tuesday. Friday, he’ll do both the Cunningham fill-in, and later, a second day of fill-in for Compass Media syndicated host Lars Larson…

LOCAL MORNING EDITION EXIT, AND A PASSING: OMW hears that Eric Wellman, local host for NPR’s “Morning Edition” on Ideastream public outlet WCPN/90.3 Cleveland, will be leaving his post at the Idea Center on Playhouse Square in mid-July.

We hear Wellman’s last day is July 15th.

And according to a station news release that floated out from Playhouse Square, into downtown Cleveland and out to the OMW World Headquarters, a long-time WCPN staffer will take over the role the following Monday:

Beginning Monday July 18, ideastream’s Rick Jackson will become local host of NPR News’ Morning Edition on 90.3 WCPN. Jackson will replace Eric Wellman who is leaving the organization to work full time on his MBA at Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management.

Jackson is no stranger to those who follow news in Cleveland, and not even to the Morning Edition host role…which he previously filled in 2003 and 2004.

Jackson has been doing news reporting work for WCPN and sister Ideastream PBS outlet WVIZ/25, and before joining the folks at the Idea Center, was a reporter for WOIO/19-WUAB/43, and WKYC/3.

As for Wellman, he notes that he hopes to “one day lead a non-profit organziation”.

While we’re electronically visiting the Idea Center, a passing of note from a station memo:

Many of you will remember Michael “Fitz” Fitzpatrick, who for a number of years hosted the Friday and Saturday night blues show on WCPN. Fitz passed away (June 14th) after a brief illness. He is survived by his longtime companion Kim, as well as a brother, sister and nephew.

Fitzpatrick came to Northeast Ohio after stints at two Columbus radio stations: WCOL (we believe the FM side at 92.3, before its country days) and former full-time commercial jazz outlet WBBY/103.9 (with no link to today’s 103.9 in the market, classic hits WTDA, which was a new license long after WBBY went dark).

He started in this part of the state on WKSU/89.7 before coming to WCPN, where he hosted the weekend blues shows until a few years ago…

SPEAKING OF WKSU: Time to note some awards for the Kent State University-owned public radio outlet, courtesy of OMW Handler Ann VerWiebe…

(Yes, she does a lot more at WKSU than taking care of the Mighty Blog[tm]…but we’re happy Ann pays attention to us!)

* WKSU nabbed 10 awards, including Best News Operation and Best Anchor, at the recent Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters awards ceremony.

“Morning Edition” anchor Amanda Rabinowitz won for Best Anchor, and added to her awards pile with a Best Feature award for reporting on the Amish newspaper “The Budget”.

* WKSU received 11 Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards from the Press Club of Cleveland.

* WKSU was recognized with 14 awards from Ohio Professional Writers, Inc. (OPW), the state affiliate of the National Federation of Press Women (NFPW).

Thank you, Ann VerWiebe, for passing the information along!

SPIN-OFF: We knew it from the moment Educational Media Foundation, the K-Love folks, bought the three Pennsylvania stations from Warren-based Beacon Broadcasting after the death of Beacon president Harold Glunt.

The notice of the sale said that EMF only wanted to hang onto WEXC/107.1 Greenville PA, a Youngstown rimshot that’s now running EMF’s satellite CCM format “K-Love” with the appropriate WLVX calls. The announcement said that EMF intended to sell WLOA/1470 Farrell PA and WGRP/940 Greenville PA, to another party.

We now know that party, and it’s not at all a surprise.

After all, Meadville PA-based Vilkie Communications, owner of classic hits WMVL/101.7 Linesville PA “Cool 101.7”, has a history with one of the two stations.

Before Beacon owner Harold Glunt decided to take WGRP/940 into his own fold, Beacon was leasing WGRP to…Vilkie Communications, which was using it to simulcast WMVL.

Now, Joe Vilkie is buying both WGRP and WLOA, for a $50,000 price tag…according to Pittsburgh-based broker Ray Rosenblum, who sent us word of the deal. The price mirrors the price Chris Lash’s Whiplash Radio paid for the two Ohio AMs formerly in the Beacon chain, WYCL/1540 Niles and WANR/1570 Warren.

While both WLOA and WGRP have been running K-Love since the purchase by EMF, we’ll assume Vilkie has very different plans.

As of yet, we don’t know if WGRP will return to a southern simulcaster of WMVL, and we don’t know what Vilkie has in mind for WLOA.

Our bet – WGRP returns to the WMVL simulcast, and WLOA becomes “Cool 1470”, much like Vilkie’s WHYP/1370 Corry PA is “Cool 1370″…all running the classic hits format.

And though much of this item is about Western Pennsylvania, signals of WEXC, WLOA and WMVL are heard in portions of Eastern Ohio to one degree or another…

DIPPING INTO THE STREAM: Akron’s Rubber City Radio has had a stream attached to oldies/news WAKR/1590 for some time…“WAKRNewsNow”, a 24/7 news-only stream that has also carried local sports and other events.

Now, WAKR itself has a separate 24/7 stream simulcasting the over-air station, complete with all the “News, Sports, Oldies” programming the station features.

Well, almost all…because the folks on West Market Street won’t be able to stream Indians, Browns or Cavaliers broadcasts, or Ohio State football and basketball, for reasons beyond their control.

All the entities in question offer paid streaming services, and forbid local affiliates to stream the games for free.

The locally-originated sports broadcasts that are produced by WAKR will continue to be heard online.

For now, the new WAKR stream goes “dark” during those Indians games, and returns after the games are over.

OMW hears that the eventual plan is to substitute the all-news “WAKRNewsNow” stream (which continues separately) for the current silence on the WAKR stream during blacked out sports events…

FILL-IN?: Numerous alert OMW readers let us know that former Clear Channel talk WTAM/1100 news reporter Greg Saber was heard anchoring afternoon newscasts on Media-Com Akron market talk WNIR/100.1 “The Talk of Akron” on Wednesday.

Later in the afternoon, we heard Saber as well.

Saber is no stranger to the Akron market, where he was once a reporter for WAKR and sister ABC affiliate WAKR-TV-WAKC-TV/23 (now ION O&O WVPX).

More recently, he was also heard frequently on Clear Channel talk WHLO/640 Akron as a part of his WTAM work.

Yes, we’re well aware that WNIR has a news anchor opening…with afternoon anchor Phil Ferguson filling in during mornings after the retirement of morning anchor Jim Midock.

But no, we don’t know if Saber is auditioning for the job, or if he’s just filling in.

One odd note – since his exit from Oak Tree, Saber has been the Northeast Ohio stringer for CBS Radio News, as we reported earlier, and the CBS newscasts are heard on WNIR’s daytime rimshot talk sister station, WJMP/1520…

ALICIA’S GOODBYE: OMW readers already know that Alicia Booth was exiting Scripps ABC affiliate WEWS/5’s “NewsChannel 5” after a 10 year run as a health reporter and anchor.

We now know why.

Booth posted a farewell on on Wednesday, calling her time at 3001 Euclid an “incredible experience”, and noting her next job – as a stay-at-home mom…

DIRK?: The name of the baby born to CBS Radio hot AC WQAL/104.1 “Q104” weekender and OMW reader Cherise Navidad on Wednesday apparently doesn’t have “Dirk” in it.

But Cherise garnered quite a bit of attention for promising, on her Twitter account, that she’d name the kid after a man who’s been very popular among Northeast Ohio sports fans recently.

We’re not sure if the New York Daily News was taking the whole thing seriously, but the tabloid did an interview with Cherise before the birth.

Cherise has called the original Dirk tweet “silly”, and clearly has her tongue in cheek with this quote from the Daily News artlcle:

She said the best part of it all will be explaining to her son why he’s named after a Dallas Mavericks star.

“[I’ll tell him] exactly that this is how silly your mom is,” she joked. “This is what we did, and Twitter is a binding contract.”

So, at some point, Cherise decided to let Q104 listeners name the child instead. (Or at least, that’s how it went on the air and on Twitter.)

According to a post-birth tweet, here’s the name:

cheriseonair Cherise Navidad
.@Q104Cleveland ethan? I like that! Actually much better than dirk! The paperwork is done then. Ethan Michael. I love him!

Ethan apparently won in a Q104 listener’s poll, the middle name was her own choice.

We asked Cherise for her thoughts on all this, but we got the E-mail in too late to catch her before the hospital visit…


  1. Tim Kubat says

    Add this to the “Where Are They Now” files:

    Remember Jim Hooley, who spent some time on WKYC as a weekend anchor and a reporter for both WKYC and (I think) WEWS?

    Jim is alive & well and still in the TV business in Denver, CO.

    From what I can gather, Jim was working at KMGH/Channel 7 (The ABC affiliate), but he is now working (or freelancing) for the Fox affiliate in the Mile High City, KDVR/Fox 31.

    The station switch must have just happened recently, as Jim’s profile can still be seen via this KMGH link:, but if you go straight to the KMGH main page,, he is nowhere to be found.

    Meanwhile, across town at Fox 31, His profile is not on the official KDVR website, but here is a screen grab:

    (I live out here in CO and just happened to catch him on TV here).

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