Winchester’s oldest radio station underneath new management |

WINCHESTER — Below new administration, the Northern Shenandoah Valley’s oldest radio station has a new identify but is retaining its longtime information/chat format.

Colonial Radio Team of Williamsport LLC began working the station at 1400 on the AM dial — previously acknowledged as WINC — on Wednesday, said Allen Shaw, president and CEO of Centennial Broadcasting II, the station’s present-day owner.

The station now is operating with the connect with letters WZFC. Inside a number of days, Colonial and Centennial will submit a license transfer software to the Federal Communications Fee, Shaw mentioned. If the transfer is accredited, Colonial will invest in the station from Centennial for $25,000, he reported.

Centennial, based in North Carolina, formerly announced designs to promote its two other place stations, WINC-FM 105.5, accredited to Berryville, and WZFC-FM 104.9, licensed to Strasburg, to Metro Radio of Fairfax. The sale was completed on Wednesday, Shaw stated. In a preceding job interview, he stated Centennial determined to promote the stations since “we’re a pretty smaller enterprise” and “it is a challenge for us” financially to continue on to individual and function them.

AM 1400 wasn’t ready to maintain the WINC call letters underneath terms of the arrangement in between Centennial and Colonial, reported Todd Bartley, taking care of member for Colonial, which is centered in Pennsylvania.

The former WZFC-FM now is operating as WKDV-FM, info on line reveals.

In a prepared assertion, Kelly Koonce, main functions officer for Metro Radio, explained the corporation designs to retain WINC-FM’s incredibly hot adult contemporary structure, which emphasizes pop audio from the 1990s by way of nowadays.

The anticipated $25,000 sale price of the AM station isn’t a lot of money in today’s business enterprise globe. But it really is challenging to operate an AM station today, enable alone promote one.

FM has grow to be the dominant radio band for the reason that most of its stations have stronger alerts that attain a lot more listeners. For that reason, those people stations — primarily ones in substantial metropolitan parts, like Richmond or Washington, D.C — can demand extra for marketing and, in turn, make far more dollars and have better economic security.

“Quite a few AM radio stations are not able to make sufficient cash” to make acquiring them worthwhile, Shaw stated.

Centennial offered WINC-AM to Metro free of charge, but Metro didn’t want it, he reported.

WINC-AM celebrated its 80th anniversary on June 26. Having been founded by the Lewis household, the station was bought by Centennial in 2007.

Not only does the station on 1400 AM in Winchester have a area in nearby historical past, but also audio and radio field record. The late Patsy Cline, a Winchester indigenous, sang dwell on the station on Saturday afternoons ahead of she grew to become a country tunes star. A former engineer there produced an notify tone utilised for CONELRAD, a predecessor to the Emergency Warn Procedure.

“It is a huge honor to just take a legacy (station) like this 1 ahead,” Bartley reported.

Shaw reported he believes the station will prosper less than Colonial’s manage.

“He is quite dynamic and really clever,” Shaw explained of Bartley. “He thinks in local programming and community involvement.”

Most of the station’s present-day programs are syndicated simply call-in converse exhibits. Bartley reported he is intrigued in putting additional regional programming on air. He extra that he encourages listeners to get hold of the station, either by telephone or its Fb page, to say what displays they want the station to broadcast and contribute thoughts on how it can better serve the group.

The format will continue to be “real-time news, real-time data,” he mentioned. Even so, “it can be heading to be bolstered and taken to a whole new level.”

Because of competitiveness amid radio stations, he declined to discuss any of his ideas nonetheless.

With nobody else fascinated in attaining the station, experienced Colonial not stepped forward, Centennial at some point might have had no other solution but consider it off the air forever and surrender its license to the FCC, Shaw mentioned.

“We would have hated to do that,” he claimed. “It would have been poor” for the community, looking at the station’s heritage.

The sale of Centennial’s Winchester-area stations isn’t going to consist of the developing on North Pleasurable Valley Road that residences their functions. Centennial is allowing Colonial and Metro Radio to occupy the creating quickly. The two companies are looking for new locations for the stations, and Centennial is speaking about with genuine estate brokers alternatives for the around 7,000-sq.-foot making, Shaw reported.

Individuals choices consist of demolition, he said, if the building won’t be able to be marketed and redeveloped finally, he stated.

WINC-AM’s tower on the property will be taken down at some position, Shaw reported. 

Colonial is in talks with another place radio station about sharing its transmission amenities, Bartley stated.