|Broadcast area||Winnipeg Capital Region|
|First air date||May 27, 1948|
|HAAT||69.5 meters (228 ft)|
|Former callsigns||CJOB-FM (1948-1976)|
|Owner||Corus Entertainment |
(Corus Premium Television Ltd.)
|Sister stations||CJOB, CFPG-FM, CKND-DT|
CJKR-FM is a Canadian radio station broadcasting at 97.5 FM in Winnipeg, Manitoba with an active rock format under its on-air brand name Power 97. The station is owned and operated by Corus Entertainment which also owns sister stations CJOB and CJGV-FM. The studios & offices are located at 1440 Jack Blick Avenue at Winnipeg's Polo Park, while its transmitter is located on Brady Road in south Winnipeg.
CJKR-FM is the most powerful FM radio station in Canada, operating with 310,000 watts. Most FM stations in Canada and the United States run 100,000 watts or less. Because CKJR-FM is one of the oldest FM stations in Canada, it was grandfathered with a much higher power. (In Winnipeg, CBW-FM also operates with an unusually high power, 160,000 watts. And CITI-FM runs 120,000 watts.)
The station first signed on the air on May 27, 1948 as CJOB-FM, an FM simulcast of CJOB. The station applied to the Board of Broadcast Governors (BBG) to move its broadcast frequency from 103.1 MHz to the current 97.5 MHz. It began airing distinct programming in 1962, featured a country music format as CHMM-FM in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and then changed its format to soft rock and its call sign to CKIS-FM in 1984. In the late 1980s, CKIS-FM moved to a rock music format, which was not in compliance with its licence at that time. Eventually, the station was allowed to amend its licence, stick with the rock format, and changed its call letters to CJKR-FM in 1991. In the late 2000s, the station moved from mainstream rock to active rock by reducing the classic rock in its playlist, aiming at a youthful male audience.
Changing owners and studios
In 2000, Western International Communications sold its Winnipeg stations to Corus Entertainment in 2000. In April 2010, Corus Radio Winnipeg announced the relocation of its radio broadcast facility to 1440 Rapelje Avenue (since renamed Jack Blick Avenue), as part of a lease agreement between Corus Entertainment and Cadillac Fairview. The relocation to Polo Park was scheduled for January 2011. CJOB, CJGV-FM and CJKR-FM would become the anchor tenants. Corus Radio Winnipeg planned to occupy the second floor of the three-storey building, expanding its radio, production and business operations to 17,500 square feet (1,630 m2). At the time, general manager Garth Buchko said the stations had outgrown their 930 Portage Avenue facility. With the move, Corus Radio Winnipeg would also upgrade to state-of-the-art, fully digital on-air systems. At the end of February 2011, CJKR-FM completed the move to its new location at 1440 Jack Blick Avenue.
Flip to Classic Rock
At Noon on January 29, 2015, after playing "Fade to Black" by Metallica, CJKR began stunting with liners promoting that Winnipeg would be getting "bigger" the following day at 8 a.m., interspersed between 5-second clips of songs with the word "big" in them. At that time, CJKR flipped to a classic rock format as 97.5 Big FM, putting it in direct competition with long-time classic rock station CITI-FM (although that station still plays current rock songs describing itself as mainstream rock). The first song on "Big FM" was "Big Time" by Peter Gabriel. The new format was being described as a "homage to Winnipeg's rock heritage", with a playlist that is "familiar, and less predictable and has rock credibility". In November 2015, veteran broadcaster Shadoe Davis was hired for "The Shadoe Davis Show" from 6-10am weekdays. In March, he was joined by another veteran Winnipeg broadcaster, Joe Aiello. "Shadoe & Joe" can now be heard together with traffic reports from Randy Parker and news with Kathy Kennedy.
Return to Active rock
On August 12, 2016, at Noon, after playing "Free Bird" by Lynyrd Skynyrd, CJKR-FM rebranded back to Power 97, and returned to active rock. The first song played on the newly relaunched "Power 97" was "Give It Away" by the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
- "Local radio station prepares FM sending". Winnipeg Tribune. April 13, 1948.
- "City station asks two FM programs". Winnipeg Tribune. September 29, 1960.
- "Local FM station is going to CKIS". Winnipeg Free Press. May 29, 1984.
- "Power 97 FM playing different tunes today". Winnipeg Free Press. Retrieved 30 January 2015.
- "Power gives way to 97.5 BIG FM". Winnipeg Sun. Retrieved 30 January 2015.
- Power 97 Becomes Big-FM
- Power 97 Returns to Winnipeg
- Power 97 Back on Winnipeg Radio Waves
- Official website
- CJKR-FM history – Canadian Communications Foundation
- Query the REC Canadian station database for CJKR-FM