WXQR-FM 105.5 is eastern North Carolina's oldest rock radio station. Originally based in Jacksonville, North Carolina, the station is now headquartered in New Bern. Having been broadcasting for over 40 years, "The Rock" is the "original rock station" for the Carolina Coast. It also recently simulcasted on WQZL/101.1, giving it coverage in inland areas, but this was discontinued in January 2012.
WXQR-FM is one of the oldest Rock stations in America. It was known as "The Rock and Roll Animal" from the 1970s til the mid-1990s. The station was once owned by Sidney Popkin, a member of one of the most prominent families in Jacksonville. The station was headquartered for many years (in the '80s and '90s) on New Bridge St near Downtown Jacksonville, in what was once the Iwo Jima Theater. Because of its location, it was a favorite among Marines stationed at Camp Lejune for decades. The station operated with 3,000 watts of power, which put them at a competitive disadvantage against its Newport-based rival Z-103, but WXQR had a solid following of loyal listeners. When Z-103 finally switched to Adult Contemporary (WMGV), WXQR's main competition became New Bern's WSFL-FM. WXQR-FM was never competitive with WSFL until its power was increased in the mid-'90s. HVS Partners, its longtime owners, sold WXQR-FM to Cumulus in the Mid-'90s who then sold it to current owner NextMedia Group a few years later. From October 2010 to January 2012, it simulcast to inland areas on WQZL/101.1.
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