What’s News? 

February 2005

Say It Ain't So  2-2-05
Surprise! Big 100 WEBG-FM 100.3 is now "Rumba 100.3". Here's part of the press release from Clear Channel. Note; they announced it as "Caliente 100.3", but apparently another station already has rights to Caliente, so now it's Rumba.


WEBG-FM 100.3 Launches Orlando’s First Full-Market Spanish Language Station

Caliente 100.3 FM Airs 5000 Songs In a Row Starting at Noon Today

Orlando, Florida, February 2, 2005 –Today at 12 noon, WEBG-FM became Orlando’s first and only full-market Spanish language station with the launch of "Caliente 100.3 FM." To celebrate the launch, "Caliente 100.3" began airing 5000 songs in a row just before noon today. The station will feature music from core artists including Marc Anthony, Gilberto Santa Rosa, El Gran Combo, Tego Calderon, Olga Tanon and Victor Manuelle.
“We are thrilled to bring Hispanic listeners throughout Orlando a station they can call their own,” commented Linda Byrd, Regional Vice President for Central and North Florida. “Orlando is one of the fastest growing Hispanic markets in the nation and is also one of the largest with approximately 20% of listeners being Hispanic.” 
WEBG-FM’s flip to Spanish-language music is part of Clear Channel Radio’s Spanish-language programming initiative announced in September 2004. Led by Senior Vice President of Hispanic Radio, Alfredo Alonso, Clear Channel Radio will significantly expand choice and availability of Spanish-language programming, complementing existing Spanish-language stations in markets that currently offer Hispanic radio while introducing unique programming in markets that do not. The entire initiative will result in the introduction of Spanish-language radio formats on Clear Channel Radio stations in an additional 20 to 25 markets.
So where will our favorites like Mike Harvey, Bill Barber and JJ Duling show up next?  Will another Orlando station pick up the oldies format? Stay tuned...


Oops! No Record For Plotkin  2-3-05
WDBO-AM 580  is reporting that Dave Plotkin of WPRK-FM 91.5, was told by the folks at the Guinness Book of World Records that he missed the mark for the longest continuous DJ broadcast.  They now say he fell 10 hours short.  Dave Plotkin had planned to stay awake and on WPRK-FM 91.5 for a 110-hour marathon over the summer,  but hurricanes Charley and Frances got in the way.  Plotkin stayed on the air for a 110 hours,  from 9AM Monday,  Jan. 17 until 11PM on Friday,  Jan. 21 to raise money for the Rollins College radio station, and, in the process, set a Guinness World Record. 
Guinness says that according to its records, a Sri Lankan man, Arulanantham Suresh Joachim, stayed on the air a record 120 hours in June 2003.  Guinness says it took a year and a half to complete the documentation and update its database.  "Please send our apologies," said Sam Knights, a Guinness spokesman.  "Unfortunately this is just the nature of record-breaking.  We have 60,000 people contact us a year."  Dave thought his grueling marathon was long enough until he found out otherwise.  "When I told people, there was sort of a gasp," Plotkin said.  "But here's the thing - it doesn't matter. Yeah, I'll still have the U.S. record, but the important thing is we've raised $17,000 for the station - and people are still donating."  "Besides, it was the most fun I ever had," he said.  Plotkin said he plans an attempt of 144 hours by next year, if the station allows it.


Bye Bye Big 100   2-4-05
Here's  a posting that was sent out to members of the WEBG-FM 100.3 "Big Winners Club".
"I want to take this opportunity to thank you for over five years of incredible support.  We are saddened that BIG 100 is gone-- we were as surprised as you by all this.  Show Business can be kind of funny like that sometimes. Your friends at BIG 100 hope 'The BIGgest Hits' will resurface somewhere on the radio dial in Central Florida soon.
So, on behalf of Mike HarveyDeanne SchulzDave KellyChris RiversBob BerryBill BarberDave Matthews,  
Uncle Johnny,  Tom Kent and Joe Johnson from Beatle Brunch, thank you for your thoughts, prayers and good wishes and thank you for an amazing rock & roll journey here in Central Florida."
J J Duling, BIG 100 Program Director


Rumors...  2-5-05
Tom Taylor at Inside Radio is reporting that Infinity, owners of WJHM-FM 101.9WOMX-FM 105.1 and  WOCL-FM 105.9, was about to flip one of their stations to Spanish. CC felt that they had to beat them to the punch.


We Are Not Alone    2-14-05
In Fort Lauderdale a station owned by Clear Channel, that has played hard rock for the past 30 years has been "flipped" to a new "Spanglish" format. WZTA-FM  94.9 "Zeta 4" has become "Mega 94.9", WMGE-FM. The format is a mix of Latin music along with English and Spanish chatter. The new format dubbed "Hurban", a mix of Hispanic and urban, will target an audience of 18 to 34 year olds, a favorite of advertisers. The DJs won't be heard until after a 5,000-song marathon (sound familiar?) that will "introduce the station". Tom Taylor of industry newsletter Inside Radio told The Sun Sentinel, "You're going to see this everywhere,"  "It's too soon to get a ratings gauge in Houston and Orlando, but in the first three months after the change in Atlanta, ratings skyrocketed -- almost six fold."



This editorial cartoon by Dana Summers appeared in the Orlando Sentinel Sunday, February 13, 2005


WPOZ to Buy WQQZ   
2-15-05
A jury has ruled in favor of Central Florida Educational Foundation, owners of WPOZ-FM 88.3 and WEAZ-FM 88.1, to buy WQQZ-FM 88.7 from Hispanic Broadcasting Systems, who dishonored a letter of intent to sell the station to Central Florida Educational Foundation. The Lake County Circuit Court has laid out a timeline for both parties to complete the transaction, with the possibility of further court intervention if the parties cannot agree on terms. In May of 2003, Central Florida Educational Foundation raised money to begin the purchase of  WQQZ in Clermont, to serve not only Lake county but western Orange county as well with a clear signal. Hispanic Broadcast System, refused to honor the purchase contract. WQQZ is also in hot water with the FCC for the broadcasting of advertisements. Such activity is prohibited, as WQQZ is a licensed noncommercial broadcaster, and the commission has fined HBS $10,000.


Need an Oldies Fix?     2-18-05
If you're looking for oldies in Orlando-you won't find them. But if you tune to WLBE-AM 790, on Saturdays form 2 PM  until 5 PM you can hear "The Rocket Radio Show" with your host "Uncle Russie", Russ Ross.  Russ does a very entertaining three hours. Tune in.


WEBG Becomes WRUM    2-18-05
Clear Channel is about to change the call letters of the former "Big 100" from WEBG to WRUM to identify it's newly Spanish formatted station.


Garabo Rides Again?    2-22-05
Unofficially, Drew Garabo former night-time host on Real Radio, WTKS-FM 104.1, has found a new home on "O-Rock 105.9", WOCL-FM 105.9. (Not 96.5 as reported earlier here) Rumor has it he will begin on March 18. More rumors are he'll host the afternoon drive on that Friday. 


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