|Broadcast area||Orlando, Florida|
|Branding||NewsRadio 102.5 WFLA|
|First air date||2011|
|Format||Talk (simulcasting WFLF-AM)|
|HAAT||138 meters (469 ft)|
Fox News Radio
|Sister stations||WMGF, WXXL, WRUM, WFLF, WJRR, WTKS-FM, WYGM|
|Webcast||102.5 WFLA on iHeart Radio|
W273CA (102.5 MHz, "NewsRadio 102.5 WFLA") is a commercial FM radio station translator in Orlando, Florida. It is owned by iHeartMedia, simulcasting the talk radio format of co-owned AM 540 WFLF which also broadcasts from Orlando. From 2011 until February 2014, the translator aired a smooth jazz format as "102.5 WLOQ." As a translator station, W273CA is limited to 250 watts, although its AM station, WFLF, broadcasts at up to 50,000 watts, the maximum power permitted for AM radio by the Federal Communications Commission.
WFLA and W273CA have a weekday local wake-up show called "Good Morning Orlando" with Bud Hedinger, a former news anchor on Channel 9 WFTV. The rest of the weekday schedule is largely made up of nationally syndicated talk shows from Premiere Networks, a subsidiary of iHeartMedia. They include Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Dave Ramsey, Ground Zero with Clyde Lewis, Coast to Coast AM with George Noory and This Morning, America's First News with Gordon Deal. Some evening and weekend hours are paid brokered programming. Most hours begin with world and national news from Fox News Radio. The station weather reports are from The Weather Channel's meteorologists and traffic reports come from co-owned Total Traffic. The station actively positions itself on the conservative end of the political spectrum, with such local marketing slogans as "Start your day the Right way," "Central Florida's Right News" and "Rush is Right."
WLOQ Beautiful Music
From its sign-on in 2011 till February 2014, W273CA carried the smooth jazz format originally heard on 103.1 WLOQ. WLOQ was started by John T. Rutledge, who also owned 950 WLOF Orlando (now WTLN). WLOQ went on the air in 1966, with the license held by the Carter Broadcasting Company. The station broadcast from a room at the Langford Hotel in Winter Park, Florida and the format was Beautiful Music, playing only instrumentals. The original format was designed by Rutledge who was very particular as to its adherence. The antenna was on a monopole on top of the hotel. All of the production, news and sales originated from the WLOF staff. Violet Jean Sidebottom was the manager of WLOQ and ran a tight ship. Rutledge appointed Jerry Reeves manager after Violet Sidebottom. The station was a Class A FM, licensed to Winter Park, stereo, dual-polarized antenna, with approximately 3000 watts of power.
103.1 WLOQ was sold along with 970 WLOF c. 1972 to the Home Security Life Insurance Company, owned by the Gross Family. The call sign was retained after the purchase.
A New Home for Smooth Jazz
In 1977 WLOQ began moving to a format it called "Good Music" which was a forerunner of the Smooth Jazz sound, combining jazz and pop music. The Smooth Jazz format continued until 2011. In 2011, after CEO John Gross retired for medical reasons, WLOQ was sold to TTB Media Corporation. At midnight on August 1, WLOQ's smooth jazz format moved exclusively online to the website "WLOQ.com" (now defunct). The station on 103.1 changed its call letters to WHKQ (now WOTW), and began stunting with all Elvis Presley music as "Elvis 103.1." On August 3, the station switched to Spanish language Top 40 as "KQ103."
Later in August, the "WLOQ Smooth Jazz" branding was purchased by iHeartMedia, Inc. (formerly Clear Channel Communications). The WLOQ sound was revived on translator station 102.5 W273CA in Orlando, fed by the HD-2 signal of co-owned 107.7 WMGF. The programming came from Broadcast Architecture's syndicated Smooth Jazz Network, except for a local morning show hosted by Erica Lee, formerly of crosstown Hot AC WOMX 105.1. Lee's show debuted on June 3, 2013. The new "102.5 WLOQ" was a moderate ratings success.
Switch to Talk
In February 2014 W273CA switched from "Smooth Jazz WLOQ" (which continues on 107.7 WMGF-HD2) to a simulcast of talk-formatted WFLF 540 AM. WFLF was rebranded as "NewsRadio 102.5 WFLF," using the translator's dial position rather than the AM station's frequency of 540 kHz.
- Broadcasting Yearbook 1977 page C-48
- "WLOQ sold because of CEO’s medical retirement" Orlando Business Journal, 2011-07-18.
- "103.1 WLOQ Orlando Sold; Now Stunting With Elvis" Lance Venta, radioinsight.com, 2011-08-01.
- Erica Lee Joins WLOQ Orlando, RadioInsight.com, 06-03-2013.
- "Urban In, Smooth Jazz Out as Clear Channel Shuffles in Orlando," Radio Insight, 12 February 2014. Retrieved 18 February 2014.