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The Year in Review: 2010

CENTRAL NEW YORK — When you think of all the station sales and format flips we recapped right here exactly one year ago, we wondered how 2010 would compare with 2009.    After all, 2009 was a pretty busy year.  But, as we once again review all that happened over the past twelve months… 2010 did a pretty good job in carving out an identity all its own.

Below, we’ve provided by chronological rundown of all the significant stories from 2010.  Later today, in a separate article, we’ll tally up our server traffic stats to count down the Top 10 Stories of 2010, based on how many “hits” stories received this year.

January

  • 4th: Premiere Radio Networks announces Rush Limbaugh’s plans to return to work after a brief health scare the previous week.
  • 6th: Once music stations bring in syndicated talent at night, it usually stays that way for good… but Utica’s Kiss-FM (WSKS/WSKU) bucks the trend by replacing Jackson Blue’s Party Playhouse with local jock Johnny Lew.
  • 6th: Two months before Galaxy takes over ESPN Radio affiliations in Syracuse and Utica, the company announces it has signed broadcast rights for the NCAA hoops tourney and New York Giants broadcasts for the 2009-10 season.
  • 11th – Geneva-based NPR affiliate WEOS returns to full strength after a “snowstorm related power surge” keeps the station at reduced power for nearly a week.
  • 15th – The National Association of Broadcasters declares February 1st will be “Broadcasters for Haiti Day,” encouraging stations to join efforts to raise money following the deadly earthquakes that rocked Haiti earlier in the week.
  • 25th – Newsradio 570 WSYR anchor Alex Silverman announces via Twitter that, among other format changes, Nikolai Busko will be joining him as a co-anchor during morning drive newscasts.

February

  • 2nd: FCC paperwork shows Northeast Gospel Broadcasting is applying for permission to sell a Herkimer-based FM translator to Utica’s Roser Communications Network for $30,000.
  • 3rd: The sudden shutdown of the Air America network forces progressive talker WNYY to make extensive changes to its lineup.
  • 4th: A big egg on Arbitron’s face — the ratings giant had to reissue the Fall 2009 book for Syracuse after rythmic AC MOViN 100.3 (WMVN) was inadvertently left out of the results.
  • 6th: Syracuse morning duo Tom Owens & Becky Palmer of B104.7 (WBBS) are nominated for the Academy of Country Music awards.
  • 8th: Syracuse’s New Country WOLF 105.1 debuts its on-air talent lineup, with the syndicated “Big D & Bubba” show plugged in for morning drive, and PD Skip Clark (who is PD and morning co-host at sister station MOViN 100.3) on afternoon drive.  The station has yet to name a midday talent.  The station had been jockless since its August 2009 launch.
  • 8th: Clear Channel announces it’ll be dropping Don Imus from the lineup at Sportsradio 620 WHEN on March 5th — the same date the market’s ESPN Radio affiliation will move from Citadel’s WNSS (1260) to Galaxy’s WTLA, WSGO and two FM translators.  But so far, nobody else claims to be picking up “the I-Man.”
  • 10th: After many years of simulcasting the same programming on AM and FM, Oneida’s WMCR finally splits: 106.3 FM sticks with music, while AM 1600 starts simulcasting the “CNY Talk Radio” lineup from the Baldwinsville studios of sister station WFBL.
  • 14th: Utica morning host Bill Keeler catches flak from National Grid, after a staffer for his show on 92.7 The Drive (WXUR) — acting as a “human billboard” for a stunt — attaches himself to one of the company’s roadside utility poles.
  • 16th: Syracuse wake-up duo Ted & Amy of 93Q (WNTQ) are named as one of 8 recipients for the 2010 Post-Standard Achievement Awards.
  • 16th: Afternoon Syracuse sports talk host Brent Axe will get national TV time, he announced via Twitter, as part of the broadcast team for the Syracuse Crunch’s outdoor game at the NYS Fairgrounds.  The broadcast will be carried by the NHL Network, since the NHL is on hiatus during the winter Olympics.
  • 19th: WRVO announces plans for Weekly Edition, a new locally-produced show set to launch in March.
  • 21st: CNY Talk Radio midday host Jon Alvarez picks up national attention after Facebook shuts down a “fan page” he established, paying tribute to a suicidal pilot who also killed an IRS worker by crashing his plane into an IRS office.
  • 22nd: A 2-for-1 from Citadel — as expected, it announced the new program lineup for The Score 1260.  Unexpectedly, the cluster confirms it’s ditching Lite Rock 105.9 (WLTI) in favor of a new FM talk format.
  • 24th: The Score 1260 changes call letters from WNSS to WSKO.
  • 25th: Longtime traffic reporter Tony Bombardo, who provided drive-time reports for multiple stations from his own airplane, announces he’s closing up the shop.  Bombardo used the name “Captain Scott King” during his earlier days on the radio.

March

April

May

June

July

August

September

October

November

December

What’s ahead for 2011?  Only time will tell.  Thanks to all of you for reading, and double thanks to those of you who’ve submitted press releases, informal announcements, and anonymous tips to help fuel many of the stories you see in the list above.  Just like a radio station or a TV station — this website is nothing without its audience.  As always, the email box at cnyradio@cnyradio.com is always open for your news tips and your feedback about the site.

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