WDEV

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WDEV / WDEV-FM
Wdev logo.png
City of license WDEV: Waterbury, Vermont
WDEV-FM: Warren, Vermont
Branding Radio Vermont
Slogan The Friendly Pioneer
Frequency WDEV: 550 kHz
WDEV-FM: 96.1 MHz
First air date WDEV: July 16, 1931
WDEV-FM: August 11, 1989
Format Variety
Power WDEV: 5,000 watts (day)
1,000 watts (night)
ERP WDEV-FM: 400 watts
HAAT WDEV-FM: 694 meters (2,277 ft)
Class WDEV: B
WDEV-FM: C3
Facility ID WDEV: 54866
WDEV-FM: 54867
Transmitter coordinates WDEV: 44°21′17″N 72°45′7″W / 44.35472°N 72.75194°W / 44.35472; -72.75194
WDEV-FM: 44°7′37″N 72°55′43″W / 44.12694°N 72.92861°W / 44.12694; -72.92861
Affiliations Associated Press Radio Network
Owner Radio Vermont Group
(Ken Squier)
Sister stations WCVT, WLVB
Webcast Listen Live
Website wdevradio.com

WDEV is a radio station based in Waterbury, Vermont, USA. WDEV broadcasts on the AM band at 550 kHz, and WDEV-FM, licensed to Warren, Vermont, broadcasts at 96.1 MHz. The stations' studios and offices are located near U.S. Route 2 in Waterbury. WDEV also operates a translator station, W243AT (96.5 FM), licensed to Barre, Vermont, and can also be heard on a privately owned translator, W270BR (101.9 FM), licensed to Island Pond, Vermont.

History[edit]

WDEV first signed on the air on July 15, 1931. It has been owned by the Squier family and their company, Radio Vermont Group, since 1935.[1] Lloyd Squier owned the station from 1935 until his death in 1979, and passed it to his son, NASCAR broadcaster Ken Squier, who owns the station today.

In 1966, one year after Sound of Music (film) was released, the von Trapp family telecast a public concert on WDEV (AM) from the family's lodge in Stowe, Vermont.[2]

In 1991, Squier bought WDOT in Warren and changed its calls to WDEV-FM. The FM station serves mainly to improve WDEV's coverage in the southern portion of its coverage area, particularly at night when the AM side must power down to 1,000 watts in order to protect clear-channel CBT in Grand Falls, Newfoundland and Labrador.

A 2003 article in Harper's magazine cited WDEV as one of the best examples of independent radio broadcasting in the United States.[3]

Translators[edit]

In addition to the main station, WDEV is relayed by several translators.

Call sign Frequency
(MHz)
City of license ERP
W
Class FCC info
W243AT 96.5 Barre (town), Vermont 99 D FCC
W270BR 101.9 Island Pond, Vermont 10 D FCC

Programming[edit]

WDEV's programming consists of news and talk shows (some, such as The Morning News Service, are in-house, others, such as the left-leaning Democracy Now! and the right-leaning True North, are syndicated in), Music to Go to the Dump By, The Trading Post, music and sports. Mark Johnson and Anthony Pollina host local talk shows at, respectively, 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. weekdays. Vermont broadcasting legend Brian Harwood began his long career at WDEV in the late 1950s. Brian was a Waterbury resident and a friend of Ken Squier.

The Trading Post[edit]

The Trading Post is an early-morning advertising block hosted by John Noyes that consists of people calling in with three items or less (and only one car, unless the others are free or a parts car) to advertise them to the listening public. There is also a "Mailbag Edition", which is the host reading written submissions. These are almost always textual, with the occasional (and unhelpful) picture thrown in.

Music to Go to the Dump By[edit]

Perhaps noting special attention is this odd programming block that runs "in memory of Marie" from 9 to 10 am on Saturday mornings. It is hosted by Buster the Wonder Dog and his Faithful Companion, Ken. Ken is portrayed by Ken Squier.

Starting as soon as possible after 9, the show starts off with Ken talking to himself and Buster, apparently not noticing he is on the air. He talks to Buster as though he were a person; Buster makes no noise other than lapping at his water bowl and eating. After a couple minutes of this, Ken "realizes" that he's on the air, states the episode number (which he apparently makes up on the spot) and cuts to the theme song.

Following that, the show settles in to roughly an hour of odd songs, jokes the readers send in, and sporadic visits from Farmer Dave, who has run since 2002 on the "Undecided Cow Party" ticket for governor of the state.

The songs tend to be weird, and are an eclectic mix of rare recordings, home recordings sent in, and the occasional Tom Lehrer song. Florence Foster Jenkins enjoyed an extremely brief resurgence of popularity on the show, and occasionally a more 'mainstream' oddball tune, such as "I Like Chinese" or "The Monster Mash" will be played.

In March 2008, Buster died, putting this show on hiatus, until later in the year.

Other programming[edit]

WDEV is an affiliate of the Boston Red Sox radio network, which is based at WEEI from Boston. WDEV carries all regular-season and postseason Red Sox games. The station also broadcasts Norwich University men's hockey and select Vermont high school basketball games.

WDEV also airs the weekly card of auto racing from Thunder Road International Speedway in Barre, Vermont, where Squier is occasionally the P.A. announcer at the track. WDEV's other Motorsports programing, when there is no conflict, includes NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Business People-Vermont: WDEV". Vermontguides.com. Retrieved 2014-02-06. 
  2. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/maria-von-trapp-member-of-sound-of-music-family-dies-1.2547976
  3. ^ http://www.harpers.org/archive/2003/12/0079849

External links[edit]