|City of license||WCXG: Grand Rapids, MI
WCXK: Kalamazoo, MI
WCXB: Benton Harbor, Michigan
|Frequency||WCXG: 89.9 MHz
WCXK: 88.3 MHz
WCXB: 89.9 MHz
|First air date||WCXG: circa 196x
WCXK: February 3, 1997
WCXB: April 5, 2010
|ERP||WCXG: 4,900 watts
WCXK: 10,000 watts
WCXB: 250 watts
|HAAT||WCXG: 74 meters
WCXK: 121 meters
WCXB: 102 meters
WCXG 89.9 FM radio, formerly WAYG, is a radio station in Grand Rapids, Michigan, broadcasting an adult Contemporary Christian music format as a simulcast of sister station 91.3 WCSG. Until November 29, 2013, the station broadcast a Christian CHR/Top 40 format as "WaY FM." WCXG's programming is repeated on WCXK (formerly WAYK) 88.3 FM in Kalamazoo,and WCXB (formerly WAYO) 89.9 FM in Benton Harbor. These stations are owned and operated by Cornerstone University, which also owns and runs WCSG, Mission Network News, and His Kids Radio.
WaYFM targeted teens, young adults, and young families with modern music wrapped in a Christian worldview. Popular artists played on the station included Switchfoot, The Fray, Relient K, GRITS, Hawk Nelson, tobyMac, BarlowGirl, Daughtry, Casting Crowns, Family Force 5, Stacie Orrico, Skillet, and other various hip hop, pop, rock, and punk acts.
WaYfm is not to be confused with WAY-FM Network, the nationally syndicated Christian CHR network. Ironically, WaYfm's competitor station in the Grand Rapids market, the commercial WJQK 99.3 FM, previously aired some programming from the national WAY-FM network, notably the afternoon drive show "Total Axxess."
WaYfm started in Kalamazoo in 1996 when Cornerstone purchased a construction permit from Grand Valley State University for 88.3 FM. After deciding on the Christian CHR format, the management of the station opted to use CHRSN's programming until local listenership and financial support allowed them to program locally.
88.3 WAYK signed on at 5pm on February 3, 1997, to serve Kalamazoo and Battle Creek. A signal was added at 89.9 in Grand Rapids in late 1998, originating not too far from Cornerstone University.
Cornerstone University announced in October 2013 that Way FM would cease operations on November 29, 2013. The 88.3 and 89.9 signals on that day began to simulcast sister station WCSG 91.3, and also changed call letters. There are not currently plans to sell 89.9 WCXG, although WCXG's coverage area is already completely swallowed up by WCSG's.
WCXG's signal is challenged in the Grand Rapids metro, as Hope College's student station, WTHS in Holland, also broadcasts on 89.9. Despite not being able to adequately cover areas to the southwest of Grand Rapids, recent[when?] Arbitron ratings for the former WaY FM format placed the station at #2 among all stations in the market with teens, and tied for 3rd place among females 12-24 (the station's core audience). To resolve the interference problem, the FCC recently[when?] approved a proposal that will move the Grand Rapids signal to a frequency of 89.7 and boost the power to 6,000 watts from the current 4,000. This move will substantially increase the ability for listeners to pick up the station in the previously underserved portions of the market and allow the signal to penetrate into eastern Muskegon and Ottawa counties for the first time, as well.
The 89.9 frequency had been used by WEHB (East Hills Broadcasters) for a number of years, broadcasting (in mono) from a tower on the Aquinas College campus, with studios above the Intersection bar. WEHB later moved to the original Blodgett Hospital on Cherry Street. WEHB was an eclectic locally programmed station, with an emphasis on jazz. The station broadcast circa 1977-1991, becoming "World Music" WBYW from 1991-1998 from a new tower atop the Plainfield Water Tower on East Beltline Ave in northeast Grand Rapids.
WCXK's signal covers the entire Kalamazoo market quite well, and extends as far southwest as Benton Harbor and as far northeast as Olivet. In the Kalamazoo metro, the former WaY-FM format consistently pulled strong ratings among teens (#2), young adults, and even persons and women 25-49 (usually placing in the top 5 or top 3 in these demos).
WCXB's signal covers the Benton Harbor and Saint Joseph areas and brings the WCSG signal to the southwestern corner of the state.
- WaYFM Website
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WCXG
- Radio-Locator information on WCXG
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WCXG
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WCXK
- Radio-Locator information on WCXK
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WCXK
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WCXB
- Radio-Locator information on WCXB
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WCXB