WDAY (AM)

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WDAY
WDAY logo
City of license Fargo, North Dakota
Broadcast area Fargo-Moorhead
Branding WDAY 970
Slogan Depend on It!
Frequency 970 AM (kHz)
Digital television subchannel audio: WDAY/WDAZ 6/8.3
First air date May 23, 1922
Format Commercial; News/Talk
Power 10,000 watts
Class B
Facility ID 22126
Affiliations ABC News
Owner Forum Communications
Sister stations WDAY-TV, WDAZ-TV, KBMY-TV/KMCY-TV
Webcast Listen Live
Website wday.com

WDAY is North Dakota's first and oldest radio station, having signed on in 1922. It is an affiliate of the ABC Radio Network. Its parent company, Forum Communications, also owns ABC affiliate WDAY-TV 6 and The Forum newspaper in Fargo. Forum Communications also owns ABC affiliate WDAZ-TV 8 in Grand Forks and several other newspapers and TV stations in North Dakota, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

The Forum bought 49 percent of the station in 1935 to become the largest shareholder, and bought the remaining 51 percent interest in 1958.

WDAY's power is 5,000 watts. The Federal Communications Commission approved increasing to that strength January 8, 1935.[1] It uses one tower to transmit a nondirectional signal by day and three towers to operate directionally at night. Its listening area is the third largest in North Dakota, after KFYR in Bismarck, and talk radio local competitor WZFG, licensed to nearby Dilworth, Minn. WDAY covers the eastern half of North Dakota, parts of northwestern Minnesota, northeastern South Dakota, and extreme southern Manitoba.

Most stations west of the Mississippi have call letters which begin with K. However, WDAY was licensed before the U.S. government changed its call sign conventions. Prior to 1923, call signs beginning with W were generally assigned to stations east of an irregular line forming the western borders of states from North Dakota south to Texas, with calls beginning with K going to stations in states west of that line. In 1923, the dividing line was shifted to the Mississippi River.

Programming[edit]

Its main radio format is News and Talk Sports Radio, including both local and syndicated shows.

May 2011 Tower Collapse and New Transmitter[edit]

On May 30, 2011, a Severe Thunderstorm severely damaged WDAY's AM Radio tower system (which was located on Main Avenue in West Fargo, ND). Of its three towers, one completely collapsed, the second snapped approximately two-thirds of the way up, and the third remained standing but severely mangled, knocking WDAY off the air. WDAY was able to get back on the air several days later with the remaining tower, using their full 5kW non-direction signal during the day, but only 1.2 kW at night, as the two towers lost transmitted the directional 5 kW signal at night.[2] The FCC granted WDAY a construction permit to make it a 10kW full-time signal from a new transmitter site near Barnesville, Minnesota. The new transmitter began broadcasting at full power in March 2013. [3]

Former staff[edit]

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Coordinates: 46°38′48″N 96°21′50″W / 46.64667°N 96.36389°W / 46.64667; -96.36389