96.5 Fredericksburg

Alpha Media Expands Into Fredericksburg

Alpha Media will pay $8.1 million for the Free-Lance Star stations in Fredericksburg. Original Report 1/24: Alpha Media continues its rapid expansion with the acquisition of the former Free-Lance Star group in Fredericksburg, VA. The sale adds four more stations to Alpha’s holdings: Country 93.3 WFLS Fredericksburg, Classic Rock “96.9 The Rock” WWUZ Bowling Green, Rhythmic CHR “99.3 The Vibe” WVBX Spotsylvania, and News/Talk 1350 WNTX/96.5 W243BS Fredericksburg. Sandton Partners, which purchased the Free-Lance Star newspaper and radio holdings out of bankruptcy was ordered by the FCC late last year to sell either the print or broadcast holdings as the bankruptcy sale ended the station’s grandfathered cross-ownership waiver. No purchase price has been rev...[Read More]

Sandton Capital Given One Year To End Fredericksburg Crossownership

When Sandton Capital acquired the assets of the Free-Lance Star Publishing Company out of bankruptcy in May, the group lost its grandfathered ability to hold both newspaper and broadcast properties in the same market. The company owns the epnomynous Free-Lance Star newspaper in Fredericksburg along with a radio group including Country 93.3 WFLS, Classic Rock “96.9 The Rock” WWUZ, Rhythmic CHR “99.3 The Vibe” WVBX, and Talk/Sports 1350 WNTX/96.5 W243BS. Sandton applied for a waiver to continue the cross-ownership until the FCC acts on a proposal in the pending 2014 Quadrennial Review to eliminate the newspaper/radio cross-ownership ban permanently. The FCC rejected the waiver request’s three primary arguments on preceding grounds. Instead the FCC has given Sandton a one-year extension...[Read More]

Sandton Capital Acquires Free-Lance Star Assets

Update 5/22: Sandton Capital Partners has acquired the holdings of the Free-Lance Star Publishing Company out of bankruptcy court for $30.2 million. Sandton had purchased a loan last summer that made them the primary creditor of the company, owed $38 million. Free-Lance Star owns Country 93.3 WFLS, Classic Rock “96.9 The Rock” WWUZ, Rhythmic CHR “99.3 The Vibe” WVBX, and Talk/Sports 1350 WNTX/96.5 W243BS in addition to the Free-Lance Star newspaper, Fredericksburg.com, a printing company, and real estate in the Fredericksburg market. Fredericksburg.com reports that Sandton hopes to close on the assets of the company by June 20. No word if the investment firm intends to retain all of the assets or spin any off. Original Report 3/7: The assets of the Free-Lance Star P...[Read More]

Fredericksburg Newspaper Launches Eclectic FM

The Free Lance-Star Publishing Company has launched a new Eclectic music station in Fredericksburg, VA. 96.5 W243BS has dropped its simulcast of News/Talk 1350 WNTX for the new format branded as “Fred-FM” being fed by the HD subchannel of 93.3 WFLS. The Free Lance-Star describes the new format as “an eclectic blend of music geared to in-office listening during the day, and highlighting a different type of music each evening. Programming will include the blues on Mondays, honky-tonk on Tuesdays and jazz on Saturdays.” The station will be branded as an extension of the newspaper’s Fredericksburg.com with programming featuring local musicians, news, and events. The translator operates with 250 watts at 86 meters. Fred-FM joins a Free Lance-Star radio cluster than...[Read More]

Translator Report 6/29

This past week has seen a lot of moves for translators with Clear Channel making moves to add new programming options in two major markets. In Minneapolis/St. Paul, Clear Channel is teaming with EMF Broadcasting to bring two translators to the top of the IDS Center in Minneapolis. Northpine.com reports 93.3 W227BF Shoreview, MN will upgrade from 10 to 99 watts and rebroadcast 97.1 KTCZ-HD2, while 102.5 K273BH Fridley, MN will jump from 41 to 250 watts rebroadcasting 101.3 KDWB-HD2. Clear Channel purchased 103.5 K278BP Cottage Grove, MN from EMF last year. It is used to rebroadcast Sports 1130 KFAN via 100.3 KTLK-HD2. Clear Channel and EMF are also working in tandem in Detroit. As part of the deal that gave Clear Channel access to 103.5 in Minneapolis last year, EMF gained programming contr...[Read More]