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|Broadcast area||Canton, Ohio|
|First air date||April 14, 1966|
|Power||1,000 watts day only|
|Transmitter coordinates||Coordinates: (NAD83)|
|Former callsigns||1989-1997: WPGY|
1989: WRQK (183 days)
|Owner||Cap III Media, Inc.|
WINW is an AM radio station that is licensed to Canton, Ohio. For its entire history the station has broadcast at 1520 kHz during daytime hours only. The station is known as "Joy 1520," and features an Urban Gospel format.
WINW established a solid reputation as a Top 40 station in the 1960s and 1970s, using the slogan "WIN-Wonderful." Even as a daytime station with a highly directional 1,000-watt signal, it was successful in Canton for over a decade, sometimes approaching double digits in the ratings, despite its obvious signal limitations. WINW had shared its frequency with WJMP located in nearby Kent, which made the Canton station difficult to hear in Northern Stark County. The station was originally built and run by Joseph Patterson "Patt" Wardlaw, Jr., who owned Radio KIST 1340 in Santa Barbara, CA, and who had previously owned and operated WLEU in Erie, PA.
New AM Top 40 competition in the form of WQIO (Q-10) (now WILB) in late 1976, as well as the increasing popularity of FM radio stations, eventually brought an end to the glory years of "WIN-Wonderful." WINW purchased FM station WHLQ (106.9) from Susquehanna Radio Corporation in 1978, changing its call sign to WOOS-FM, and installed an automated Top 40 format there, while WINW changed to a Big Band/Adult Standards format in 1981 and then went through a string of format and call letter changes for the next 15 years.
WINW evolved into an adult contemporary station by the mid-1980s, became an automated oldies station in 1987, changed to WRQK (AM) on February 14, 1989 when it was coupled with WRQK-FM, changed back to WINW on August 16, 1989, then changed once again to WPGY on April 5, 1996 (by that time owned by Sabre Communications, who was "parking" the WPGY call letters for use on its new FM in Elmira, New York), and finally changed back to WINW on March 27, 1997.
The 1997 version of WINW was originally a Contemporary Christian station, but leased an increasing amount of its air time to preachers and Urban Gospel music, which eventually became its final format.
After many years at its transmitter site on Martindale Road, N.E., WINW moved into new studios at 237 West Tuscarawas Street in downtown Canton not long after the format change to Gospel. The "WIN-Wonderful" sign from the station's Top 40 heyday remained standing outside the Martindale studio building until the mid-1990s.
Off the air
On September 23, 2010, WINW's transmitter site was heavily vandalized - the victim of copper theft during the station's off-hours in the nighttime. Due to that and severed tower support cables, WINW was forced off the air for an extended period. Pinebrook Corp. also realized that a 2004 license renewal was dismissed and the station no longer had authority to operate. It returned to the air with a temporary wire antenna, but would eventually fall silent again on February 23, 2011.
The FCC deleted WINW's license from their records on March 3, 2011. However, on September 15, 2011, the FCC granted special temporary authority for WINW to resume operations, following a request by Pinebrook Corp., which claimed that repairs to the station's facilities were completed. The station returned to the air in December.
- WINW weekly music survey ("WIN-Wonderlist") from January 17, 1970
- WINW weekly music survey ("WIN-Wonderlist") from February 20, 1971
- Aircheck of WINW from May 1986 (also featuring an old WINW logo from the 1960s or 1970s)
- Query the FCC's AM station database for WINW
- Radio-Locator Information on WINW
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for WINW