Morehead State Public Radio
2012 CPB Station Activities Report
Morehead State Public Radio (MSPR, WMKY at 90.3FM) is governed by the Board of Regents at Morehead State University (MSU) in Morehead, Kentucky. MSPR is operated by its flagship station, WMKY in Morehead with a translator W202BH in Inez. Since 1965, WMKY has served the communities of eastern Kentucky, southern Ohio and western West Virginia.
MSPR’s mission is to provide programming that is educational, informative and entertaining to the region. Through the work provided by a staff consisting of full-time directors, student interns and work studies, as well as community volunteers, MSPR is able to offer regional news, public affairs and documentary programming, as well as a variety of regional music programs consisting of classical, jazz and Americana (bluegrass, blues, folk, roots-based country and traditional/old-time).
Regional News Programming
- “Front Page” is a weekday, half-hour public affairs program on community issues, people and events important to the listeners in the MSPR region. Front Page explores many topics including education, health, environment, government, arts and culture.
- “Mountain Edition” is a weekday, half-hour newsmagazine on current issues and events from the MSPR region. This program also showcases produced feature segments, sports, arts and sports news, as well as guest commentaries.
- “Health Matters” is a weekly, hour-long program which addresses medical topics and health education issues. “Health Matters” is a co-production between MSPR and the Northeast Kentucky Area Health Education Center, an outreach service of St. Claire Regional Medical Center in Morehead (KY).
- MSPR regularly contributes feature stories to “Inside Appalachia,” a weekly, hour-long news program focusing on the people, environment and culture of theAppalachian region. The program is produced by West Virginia Public Radio and is broadcast on several public radio stations throughout the Appalachian region.
- MSPR’s feature reports are regularly shared with the Kentucky Public Radio Network, a collaborative effort between seven public radio stations from throughout Kentucky including WEKU, WFPL, WKMS, WKYU, WNKU and WUKY. The Kentucky Associated Press also receives news stories on a regular basis from MSPR.
In addition, MSPR produces regular daily newscasts and in-depth features on people, places and events in the region. MSPR regularly covers a variety of regional issues including (but not limited to) agriculture, arts and culture, economics, education, environment, government, health, housing, legal/courts, police/fire and transportation.
In 2012, MSPR shared more than 1,700 regional stories (scripts and audio) and 60 extended news features with the Kentucky Public Radio Network. Extended news features offer an in-depth perspective on a particular issue or event.
MSPR also provides extended election coverage from several counties in the broadcast region with live reports, interviews and election results during the primary and general elections. MSPR regularly invites regional newsmakers and politicians to our studios to discuss their ideas, issues and platforms. Equal opportunities are extended to all parties involved, representing all sides of the issues.
Regional Music Programming
- Classical music is presented weekdays from 9:30a.m. to 3p.m. and overnights Monday through Friday from 12a.m. to 5a.m. Feature segments include The Composer’s Datebook, Pulse of the Planet, 90 Second Naturalist, The Writer’s Almanac, Marketplace Tech Report and Earth & Sky. During observed holidays and special occasions such as Veteran’s Day, Memorial Day, Black History Month and Women’s History Month, special programs and features are presented.
- The “MSU Recital Series” is a locally-produced weekly program recorded live from The Duncan Recital Hall in MSU’s Baird Music Building and featuring student, staff and guest recitals from the MSU Department of Music, Theatre and Dance.
- MSPR offers two jazz music programs featuring contemporary and traditional styles. “Sunday Night Jazz” is presented Sunday evenings from 8p.m. to midnight and “The Jazz Lounge” airs overnight Saturdays and Sundays from 12a.m. to 6a.m.
- MSPR presents several programs of Americana music, which consists of bluegrass, blues, alternative country, folk and traditional/old-time Appalachian styles. “Americana Crossroads” airs weeknights from 7p.m. to 10p.m.; “Bluegrass Diversion” and “Bluegrass Sunday” are offered on Saturdays and Sundays from 11a.m. to 2p.m.; “Nothin’ But The Blues” airs Saturdays from 8p.m. to midnight, “Pickin’ Parlor” airs on Sundays from 2p.m. to 4p.m., “Grant Alden’s Field Notes” airs the last Friday of the month at 7p.m. and “Tony Pence’s Country Jukebox” airs the second Friday of each month at 7p.m.
During MSPR’s locally-hosted music programs, regional events are mentioned and promoted. Musicians and songwriters are invited to the studios to perform and interviews are conducted on a regular basis. In addition, MSPR’s music programs feature recorded music from concerts, festivals and recitals, including events at Morehead State University and throughout the region.
- MSPR offers “A Time for Tales” as a weekly program of storytelling through words and music which features regional and national storytellers. MSPR also assists in the promotion of the annual Cave Run Storytelling Festival, held each year at Cave Run Lake, which is part of the Daniel Boone National Forest in Morehead. “A Time for Tales” can be heard Sunday afternoons at 4p.m.
- MSPR produced several live broadcasts from regional facilities and events in 2012 including art centers, craft fairs, music and cultural events. These events included a Masters Spelling Bee, Kentucky Folk Art Center ribbon-cutting, convocation addresses, Tornado Storm Recovery – Special Report and more.
- MSPR regularly broadcasts public service announcements of regional community events and activities. The information is also posted on MSPR’s website with a form available for submitting public service announcements. More than 600 individual public service announcements were made available to our listeners in 2012.
- MSPR offers additional programming services on its website (www.msuradio.com) including live web streaming of regular programming. Archived audio files and podcasts of several locally-produced regional news and music programs are also available on MSPR’s website.
Awards and Recognitions
In 2012, MSPR, along with several staff members, were recognized with awards and recognitions for their accomplishments and contributions to broadcasting.
- MSPR staff won 7 awards in 6 categories from the Annual Kentucky Associated Press Awards Banquet in Louisville on April 14 including 1st Place for Best Radio Soft News Feature (David Gillum), Best Radio Sports Feature (Tanner Hesterberg) and Honorable Mention Radio Soft News Feature (Tanner Boyd) in the College Competition. In the Radio Non-Commercial Competition, 2nd Place for Best Sports Feature (Tanner Hesterberg) and Best Political Coverage (Chuck Mraz), as well as Honorable Mention for Best Radio Newscast (Chuck Mraz) and Best Web Site (Greg Jenkins)
- Tanner Hesterberg was the recipient of MSPR’s Outstanding Student Award and
Travis Hall was the recipient of the MSPR/Community Advisory Board Student Achievement Award presented on April 26
- Paul Hitchcock, MSPR General Manager, elected to MSU’s Staff Congress
- MSPR won the “Best Decorated Food Booth” award at the Morehead Arts & Eats Festival (September 15)
Operating as the flagship station for the MSPR network, WMKY (90.3FM) serves as an important hands-on training opportunity for many Morehead State University students. The support Morehead State Public Radio receives from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) enables us to train, supervise and evaluate students for careers in broadcasting, purchase national programming while developing local programs of educational and entertaining importance. In addition, funding we receive allows our staff opportunities to attend professional development seminars and conferences.
Important to serving the communities in our region is involving MSPR’s Community Advisory Board (CAB). The CAB consists of nine individuals from MSPR’s service region. The CAB reviews MSPR’s mission, goals and programming, assists in developing and building the listening audience and expanding the operational base of support. CAB members volunteer their time on the board, with each serving a three year term and meeting with MSPR staff on a quarterly basis. The CAB also has the responsibility of selecting the recipient of MSPR’s CAB Student Leadership Award.
MSPR is highly involved with the community and actively participates in regional cultural and music festivals. In 2012, some of these events in Morehead included the Morehead Arts & Eats Festival, Cave Run Storytelling Festival, Masters Spelling Bee, Morehead Old-Time Music Festival, Noon Tunes On The Lawn, Rowan County Schools Gifted Students Program, Shooting Star Youth Theatre, Morehead Theatre Guild and A Storybook Christmas.
Regional events supported by MSPR included the Col. Bill Williams Heritage Music Festival (Greenup), Mandolin Farm Bluegrass Festival (Flemingsburg), Rolling Hills Folk Center Summer Concert Series (Flatwoods), Stanton Corn Festival (Stanton) and Jubilo Music & Arts Festival (Winchester).
MSPR also co-sponsored events on the campus of Morehead State University (MSU) during 2012 including Constitution Day, Music, Theatre and Dance productions, MSU Film Series, Creative Writing Symposium and Reading Series, Eastern Kentucky Writing Conference, Bassoon/Piano/String/Trombone/Trumpet Clinics, Cavani String Quartet, Jasper String Quartet, Mariachi Azteca de Lexington and The Ceramics Firm.
MSPR participated in several job fairs and open house events at MSU and throughout the region. MSPR staff members were featured speakers at civic luncheons, public gatherings and MSU classrooms. MSPR also welcomed new students to MSU by participating in the Student Orientation, Advising and Registration activities.
MSPR’s facilities are open to the general public and the staff regularly provides guided tours of our facilities to grade schools, clubs, civic groups and community organizations. MSPR’s staff is actively involved with the community by volunteering with Habitat for Humanity, Morehead Tomorrow, Sustainable Morehead, Morehead-Rowan County Chamber of Commerce, Morehead Recycling Center, Rowan County Christmas and collecting items for clothes, toy and food drives for regional non-profit, public service organizations.
MSPR is dedicated to the listeners in our region by offering a variety of educational, informational and entertainment programming which is valuable to the communities served by the MSPR network. Besides local programming, the support we receive from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) allows us to purchase programs from National Public Radio such as All Things Considered, Car Talk, Morning Edition, Thistle and Shamrock, Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me, Weekend Edition, World Café and holiday specials.
Programs used on MSPR from Public Radio International include Classical 24, Bob Edwards Weekend, The World and This American Life. MSPR also carries programs from American Public Media including A Prairie Home Companion, Marketplace Morning Report, The Writer’s Almanac and holiday specials.
MSPR also purchases wire and audio services from the Associated Press and the Kentucky Public Radio Network through the support of the CPB. Additional (independent) national programs used on MSPR include American Routes, Folk Sampler and Inside Appalachia. MSPR’s weekday features include The Composer’s Datebook, Pulse Of The Planet, 90 Second Naturalist, The Writer’s Almanac, Marketplace Morning/Tech Report and Earth & Sky.
To support our programming, student and part-time personnel, equipment purchases and outreach services, MSPR conducted two on-air fundraisers in 2012. MSPR was successful in receiving gifts from more than sixty cities from ten states. Through MSPR’s website, an online giving form is available year-round with additional opportunities to provide listener feedback. Many community businesses and supporters assisted our efforts by working as phone volunteers, being an on-air guest, donating in-kind gifts or issuing challenge gifts.
As a way to reach-out to our regional listeners and to attract interest in our programming, MSPR regularly conducts on-air giveaway campaigns. The gift packages often spotlight cultural events or services unique to our region. Registrations are conducted through MSPR’s website, which creates an incentive for our listeners to visit the website. In addition, items such as event tickets, books, gift baskets, getaway weekend, t-shirts and CD’s are awarded regularly to listeners during our regional programming. Gifts or services are donated to MSPR as an in-kind gift or as a trade for underwriting messages.
Similar to our commitment to programming, MSPR is dedicated to improve our technical quality to the region. A data text service was added to WMKY’s transmission, providing an added opportunity for special messages including programming and emergency notifications. MSPR will continue to improve its website by providing an interactive outlet for listeners through podcasting, web streaming and audio downloads, as well as other interactive media.
MSPR will continue to focus on providing quality news, informational and entertainment programming which best serves our region. MSPR will enhance regional news programs by offering in-depth stories and features on people, places, issues and events. MSPR’s local music programs will highlight regional performers by spotlighting them as in-studio guests and their recorded projects. As a measurement of success, MSPR will submit entries for awards, scholarships and/or grants in regional, state and national competitions.
As resources are available, MSPR will continue to support regional community outreach events such as concerts, festivals, workshops, symposiums, exhibits and/or lectures. These activities enable MSPR to foster and enhance partnerships with regional organizations and the communities they serve. Connecting with these communities is a vital part of MSPR’s mission to provide programming which is educational, informative and entertaining.
An important role in our operations is our public service to the region which goes beyond serving as a flagship station in the Emergency Alert System. Part of MSPR’s continued efforts to best serve our listeners, especially the rural sections of our broadcast region, is to be proactive in regularly providing public safety information regarding emergencies and natural disasters. MSPR has placed a link on our website directing them to Ready America, which provides information on preparing an emergency home kit for fresh water, food, clean air, warmth and overall protection during an emergency. In addition, WMKY has installed a Sage EAS Digital Endec system to comply with FCC/FEMA regulations for the transmission and rebroadcast of alert messages. Since WMKY is a flagship station for the EAS relay system, regular, weekly and monthly test messages are originated from WMKY’s studios and distributed throughout the system.
Important to the success of our progress towards improved programming and outreach activities, is developing a knowledgeable and trained professional staff. Opportunities for MSPR’s staff to attend workshops, seminars and conferences will be considered to enhance their professional training, career education and peer-networking opportunities. As a result, MSPR’s full-time staff can be better informed and skilled at sharing their knowledge with students and other part-time staff members.
MSPR will also look to enhance local programming of news, information and entertainment. Several new programs are being formulated to focus on regional, cultural and minority interests. Current full-time and part-time staff, as well as members of the community will be cultivated to host and produce the special programs. Programs already in development include “Fresh Picks,” a look a newly-released recorded music of all styles; “Now And Again,” a program of storytelling, trivia and music; “Odd Numbers,” musical satire, wit and unique forms of music; “Total Praise,” a review of traditional and modern gospel; and “Jazz Portraits,” a spotlight of key figures in jazz through biography profile and archival music.
MSPR, through the support of NPR Digital Services, will migrate to an enhanced Content Management System (CMS) and use of NPR’s Core Publisher for the purpose of providing a more useful, practical and interactive vehicle for local news content. The improved website will offer daily, locally-generated news content as well as national news stories from NPR.
To enhance MSPR’s broadcast operations, a renovation of space previously used for engineering will be transformed into another production room at WMKY’s main studios. The facility will be used by students and staff for news and music production, newscasts, interviews and long-form features. The newly-renovated facility could also be used to enhance WMKY’s digital broadcasting (HD) capabilities by offering a second on-air service, such as news or classical music programming.
Morehead State Public Radio, including our flagship station WMKY in Morehead and our translator in Inez, greatly appreciates the generous support of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. MSPR understands this is a partnership with the CPB and our combined efforts in serving our listeners include valuable programming of information, education and entertainment.