|City of license||Amherst, Massachusetts|
|Broadcast area||Pioneer Valley|
|Slogan||Radio you don't hear on the radio|
|First air date||1949 (carrier current AM)
|ERP||450 watts, Stereo|
|Callsign meaning||Massachusetts University - Amherst|
|Owner||University of Massachusetts Amherst
(University of Massachusetts)
WMUA (91.1 FM) is a student-run community radio station. Licensed to serve Amherst, Massachusetts, USA, the station is based on the campus of the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The station's broadcast license is held by the University of Massachusetts.
WMUA was established in 1949 originally as an AM station. Though it is run by undergraduates, other faculty, staff, assorted members of the community, and graduate students contribute to the station. WMUA is broadcast to the Connecticut River Valley, including western Massachusetts, northern Connecticut, and southern Vermont. The station is federally licensed (authorized by the FCC) and non-commercial, and is under the supervision of the UMass Board of Trustees.
WMUA's studio is located in the basement of the Lincoln Campus Center building. The actual transmitter and antenna are located on Observatory Way, between the Orchard Hill & Sylvan Residential living areas. This facility, activated at midnight on January 1, 2004, is WMUA's third transmission site; it originally transmitted from the atop Marston Hall, and then on Emily Dickinson Dormitory. The Dickinson Dormitory tower in Orchard Hill served as a backup until a re-roofing project took it down in 2011; it is licensed as a backup facility and rebuilding the backup was completed on June 30, 2014. The station is a licensed "class A" broadcast facility.
WMUA's programming philosophy outlines the intent of the station to feature programming that is not typically found anywhere else on the dial. WMUA features a variety of programs that follow a "block" format. There are themed blocks daily, such as jazz, world, rock, and experimental music, but programs within these blocks vary from each other as well. There are also talk shows, sports updates, and newscasts every weekday at 5:30pm. WMUA broadcasts 24/7/365, and is available as a stream online from the home page of the WMUA website.
WMUA broadcasts a record 12 hours of polka programming on the weekends, including the "Polka Bandstand" show hosted by IPA Hall-Of-Famer: Billy Belina. Launched in 1979, his program garners thousands of listeners and his fall "PolkaThon" has been instrumental in helping the station obtain funding for studio equipment upgrades.
WMUA provides an outlet for multiple opinions to be expressed through music, political and advocacy talk, and public service announcements. The variety of programing allows advocacy for political outlets during Democracy Now! which airs daily from 8:00am-9:00am, as well as a music movement toward local bands and smaller labels on all music based programs.
WMUA is the official radio station of the UMass Women's Basketball team and the UMass Men's Lacrosse team. They also broadcast other UMass Minutemen sports including Ice Hockey, Men's Basketball, Baseball and Football throughout the year.
- "Call Letter Origins". Radio History on the Web.
- Parnass, Larry. UMass grad Audie Cornish, NPR veteran, lands Sunday anchor slot . GazetteNet.com, 2011. http://www.gazettenet.com/blog/gazetteer/umass-grad-audie-cornish-npr-veteran-lands-sunday-anchor-slot-0
- Official website
- Query the FCC's FM station database for WMUA
- Radio-Locator information on WMUA
- Query Nielsen Audio's FM station database for WMUA
- Unofficial WMUA Blog