After running some Air America Radio shows over the weekend, liberal talk WARF/1350 Akron ("Radio Free Ohio") has indeed added some of the liberal network's weekday programming abandoned by WJMP/1520 Kent...which has moved to Fox Sports Radio.
Well, at least it was supposed to do so today, but you can never tell sometimes with WJMP... and since the OMW World Headquarters has moved a few hundred miles away for the past few days, we can't hear it ourselves. Heck, when we're at our usual World HQ, we can barely hear WJMP!
After adding much of AAR's weekend programming this past weekend, WARF has added, according to a number of listeners actually in the market, the network's signature host Al Franken for a live noon-3 PM clearance. And AAR's Randi Rhodes was heard on "Radio Free Ohio" this evening at 6 PM. It's not clear at the moment whether the station will carry her entire four hour show in the 6-10 PM slot, at least for now on nights with no Aeros games or other sports pre-emptions. P1/Jones Radio's Ed Schultz remains in the 3-6 PM clearance slot.
Our prediction stands - that Al, Randi and the weekend programming will be the only AAR additions to the WARF schedule.
Another expected event has come true, according to a listener near the signal range of WEXC/107.1 Greenville PA, the troubled Beacon Broadcasting-owned oldies station just over the Ohio/PA border. It's reportedly flipped to a youth-oriented format of Christian-based hip hop and hard rock music under the name "Freak 107". (I only hope the listener in question isn't making this up!) Still up in the air - what this means for co-owned WANR/1570 Warren or co-owned/LMA'ed WGRP/940 in that small PA community.
You might recall that incoming Beacon owner Harold Glunt had promised Christian programming aimed at high school and college age folks...maybe this is his answer.
We've been asked why we cover stations not in Ohio on this blog. As we explained in a reply to a comment, Greenville PA is just a few miles over the border, and the FM in question puts a very listenable signal into much of the Youngstown/Warren market. (I've personally heard it as far west as eastern Portage County with no problem.) And as noted, the Beacon cluster stretches across the state line back into Ohio.
We promise not to spend a LOT of time in western Pennsylvania, but the parts basically attached to Ohio markets like Youngstown are fair game. And after this station gets established, it'll be a while before we have to visit it again, one assumes...though we will check in with the Vilkie Broadcasting folks (WMVL Linesville-Meadville PA) and see if they're doing anything with WGRP...
Those looking for more regular Pennsylvania coverage are encouraged to visit my good friend Scott Fybush's NorthEast Radio Watch.