WSGE 91.7 FM marks 40 years of broadcasting
WSGE 91.7 FM, Gaston College’s award-winning radio station, celebrates its 40th anniversary this year. On October 27, 1980, WSGE began broadcasting from its studio on the College’s Dallas campus. Originally part of Gaston College’s Broadcast Production and Technology Department, the station provided practical training opportunities for students interested in the broadcast industry. The FM station is now known as “Your Independent Music Source,” and it covers an area that encompasses over 1.3 million residents. Its signal can be heard in 10 counties and online streaming reaches listeners throughout the U.S. and in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Germany, Taiwan, and many other countries. WSGE is a volunteer-driven station that operates 24 hours a day.
WSGE has evolved over its 40 years from a 3,000-watt station that aired Blues, Rock, Big Band, and Classical music to a 7,500-watt station that features Blues and Rock as well as Alternative Country, Folk, Rhythm & Blues, Gospel, World Music, Jazz and original programming in its line-up. It is perhaps best known for its strong commitment to Beach and Shag music, and by 2019 WSGE had been recognized six times as the Carolinas Beach Music Awards’ FM Station of the Year. In 2011, WSGE received a grant for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and added news and information programming from NPR.
Giving back to the community is vital to WSGE’s mission. The station has partnered with Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina’s Backpack Program, has served as an annual media sponsor of the House of Mercy’s Walk for AIDS, and has participated in area festivals, concerts and other non-profit events. WSGE’s annual Socks for Seniors drive collects new socks, gloves, and toiletries for people in need during the holiday season. “Thanks to our listeners’ generosity in supporting our ‘Socks for Seniors’ drives over the past seven years, WSGE has been able to bring a little warmth, comfort, and holiday cheer to those who need it the most,” said Cathis Hall, WSGE station manager. “We look forward to doing the same this year.”
Listener support is crucial to the success of WSGE’s operations. The station’s Fall 2020 Fundraising Drive is currently underway with a goal of raising $70,000 to help WSGE continue to produce and present high quality, commercial-free programming. Listeners who pledge at levels of $40 and above are eligible for thank you gifts commemorating WSGE’s 40th anniversary. To donate to WSGE, visit www.wsge.org and click on Support.
“WSGE’s commitment to music is unparalleled,” said Hall. “Our mix of music is eclectic and we are proud to play more Carolina artists than any station in the area. The quality programming we provide would not be possible without our wonderful volunteers and financial contributions from our loyal listeners. In these turbulent times, we appreciate their support more than ever.”
For more information about WSGE 91.7 FM, contact Cathis Hall at 704-922-6552 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About WSGE 91.7 FM Radio
Owned and operated by Gaston College, WSGE began broadcasting on October 27, 1980, and currently transmits at 7,500 watts, giving it the potential to reach 550,000 persons in approximately 10 counties. Located on Gaston College’s Dallas campus, WSGE is a volunteer-driven station that operates 24 hours a day under the slogan, “Your Independent Music Source.”
WSGE is one of only four community colleges in North Carolina with a non-commercial radio station. The others are Craven Community College in New Bern, Central Carolina Community College in Sanford, and Isothermal Community College in Spindale.
WSGE derives financial support through state funds from its affiliation with Gaston College, listener support, corporate sponsorship and underwriting, a Corporation for Public Broadcasting grant.
Logos/Photos: Photos of DJ and Guest in the Studio
Photo: Beach Music DJ’s – (Front row, L-R) Gaston College radio WSGE 91.7 FM is the recipient of the Carolina Beach Music Awards (CBMA) 2019 FM Radio Station of the Year Award. This is the fifth consecutive year the station has received this award. Congratulations to Beach/Shag volunteer radio personalities Curtis Treece, Sandy Hamilton, John Barkley. (Second row, L-R) David Dodd, Phil Kistler, and Joe Mays.