WNNK-FM

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WNNK-FM
Wink 104 logo
City of license Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Broadcast area Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Branding Wink 104
Slogan "Harrisburg's Best Music Mix"
Frequency 104.1 MHz (also on HD Radio)
104.1 HD-2: Sports (WHGB simulcast)
Translator(s) 95.3 W237DE (Harrisburg, relays HD2)
First air date 1962
Format Hot Adult Contemporary
ERP 22,500 watts
HAAT 221 meters
Class B
Facility ID 32945
Transmitter coordinates 40°18′59.00″N 76°57′04.00″W / 40.3163889°N 76.9511111°W / 40.3163889; -76.9511111
Callsign meaning WiNK 104
Former callsigns WNNK-FM (1962-1985)
WNNK (1985-1990)
Owner Cumulus Media
Sister stations WWKL, WQXA, WHGB, WZCY
Webcast Listen Live
Website wink104.com

WNNK-FM (104.1 FM, "Wink 104") is a hot adult contemporary music formatted radio station serving the Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, area. Its studio is located in Linglestown, Pennsylvania and its transmitter is located on an antenna farm alongside WHTM-TV in Enola, Pennsylvania.

History[edit]

Wink 104 actually began life with the call letters and moniker "WTPA" in the early 80s. In the mid-80s, the call letters were changed to "WNNK", and the station became known as "Wink 104". Throughout the 80s and 90s, Wink 104 was consistently ranked #1 in the Arbitron ratings for the Harrisburg / Carlisle / Lebanon market. Beginning in the late 1990s, Wink 104 was the subject of a rapid-fire series of mergers and acquisitions. Originally owned by Key Market Investors, Wink 104 was sold to Capstar in 1995. In 1999, a short-lived broadcast startup known as "AM/FM" ("America's Music For the Millennium") purchased Wink 104 from Capstar. Less than a month later, AM/FM itself was purchased by Clear Channel, placing Wink 104 under Clear Channel's control. However, due to FCC ownership limitations, Clear Channel was forced to divest several stations, resulting in the sale of Wink 104 to then-startup Cumulus Media.

An interesting footnote to this series of acquisitions is that during the Clear Channel ownership period, Wink 104 and WTPA (then and now a classic rock station) fell under the same ownership. Aside from the relationship of the two call signs, the situation was also made interesting due to the fact that a substantial percentage of WTPA's on-air imaging and DJ banter consisted of attacks on Wink 104 and its personalities. Once both stations wound up under Cumulus Media control, WTPA DJs were forced to immediately cease all on-air references to Wink 104. Today, both stations co-exist peacefully.

In 2001, shortly after the dust settled on the ownership changes, Clear Channel launched WHKF in an attempt to deflate Wink 104's market dominance by stealing the younger portion of WNNK's audience. This ultimately led to Clear Channel's adult-oriented station WRVV taking the overall #1 position in the market; not because of improved ratings at WRVV, but because of decreased listenership at WNNK. Cumulus Media reacted to WHKF by launching their own youth-oriented station, Hot 92. Although WHKF never approached Wink 104 in the ratings, it did cause Wink 104 to change formats from Hot AC to AC in March 2002. The logic to this maneuvering was that Wink 104 would continue to dominate the adult demographic, while Hot 92 would either dominate the young demographic or severely cripple WHKF's ratings.

Wink 104 is generally regarded as the original "Wink" station in contemporary radio, and has inspired other stations including the relatively close Wink 108 in State College, Pennsylvania (WIKN) and Wink 106 in Corning, New York (WNKI).

Slogans used by Wink 104 include (in no particular order) "four in a row with no talk", "five / six in a row", "long music marathon", "we only stop the music twice an hour", "your 10 in a row station", "the best songs of the 80s, 90s, and today", and "#1 for today's hit music, free money, and fun". Their current slogan is "today's best music".

From inception until 2003, Wink 104's studios and offices were located in a standalone building in uptown Harrisburg. Due to the consolidation with WTPA, WTCY, and WWKL, as well as the expenses involved with ongoing repairs, the studios and offices for all of the Cumulus Media stations were moved to a single location in an office park in Susquehanna Township (a suburb of Harrisburg).

Production & imaging[edit]

Wink 104 currently uses the "Z+" jingle package from JAM. From 2001 until mid-2002, Wink used a combination of the "KDWB 1996", "KDWB 1997", and "Fly 92" packages from Reel World Productions. Previously, the "Z World" package from JAM was used.

Until 2001, Wink 104 still used studio-grade CD players for music, and a combination of carts and AudioVault for commercials, jingles, and other non-programming elements. In 2001, Wink 104 began using Prophet, a computer-based automation system, almost exclusively.

Bruce Bond[edit]

Bruce Bond was the host of Wink 104's afternoon drive, titled The Bruce Bond Late Afternoon Show. This show was noteworthy for both its format and the time slot in which it aired. The Late Afternoon Show was an all-talk show with multiple concurrent hosts; while this itself is not unusual, its presence on an otherwise all-music formatted station is highly unorthodox. Even more unusual was the fact that the show aired on weekdays from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM, otherwise known as the "afternoon drive" and the second most-expensive portion of the day (generally second only to the morning drive) for advertisers. Typically, this time slot is reserved for carefully calculated and heavily-tested programming. Wink 104 saw tremendous success with the format, however, and aside from a few brief interruptions, ran the show live from 1995 until 2002.

In 2002, Bruce Bond was fired from the station and the show was canceled. Wink 104's official explanation was that the show, which typically featured subject matter geared towards a mature audience, was not compatible with their new "family friendly" programming.

On June 27, 2008, Bond was indicted on 65 charges related to money laundering, identity Theft, and mail fraud in New York, New York. He was held on $250,000 bond.[1] Bond was jailed at Rikers Island in New York. He pleaded guilty to charges of second-degree grand larceny, identity theft, and the possession of forgery devices on September 24, 2008, accepting a sentence of two and one-third to seven years in prison.[2]

HD radio[edit]

Cumulus Broadcasting began upgrading its stations to HD Radio broadcasting in 2005. One of the first ten stations to be upgraded was WNNK-FM.[3]

WNNK-FM's HD2 subchannel is the originating source for another Cumulus station in Harrisburg, urban adult contemporary formatted "95.3 The Touch" (W237DE). The "Touch" format is rebroadcast on translator W237DE at 95.3 FM. WNNK-FM's HD2 subchannel became the "home" for the programming when the original home at 1400 AM became sports WHGB "ESPN 1400" (now simulcast on WNNK-FM's HD3 subchannel). On August 27, 2011 The Touch 95.3 posted on its website that its last day would be August 31, 2011. Since then, ESPN has taken over 95.3 as a translator to WHGB/1400. Now there is not one full-time Urban/Urban AC station in Harrisburg, even though WWKL adds old school tracks to pick up listeners that liked Urban music in Harrisburg.

Signal Note[edit]

Because of Wink 104's proximity to Allentown, Pennsylvania along I-81 and I-78, the signal collides with B104's signal right around Reading, Pennsylvania.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Maull, Samuel (2008-06-27). "Pennsylvania former radio talker indicted in NYC". Newsday. 
  2. ^ "Bruce Bond pleads guilty in New York City today". The Associated Press (via PennLive.com). 2008-09-24. 
  3. ^ Harnett, Mary Beth (2006-04-24). "Harris Corporation Announces Multi-Deal Agreement as Exclusive HD Radio(TM) Supplier to Cumulus Broadcasting". EE Times. 

External links[edit]