Saga Snags Two Translators For ESPN Radio AMs

By on Sep, 13 2016 with Comments 0

Saga Communications has purchased two translators under the FCC’s AM Revitalization Act and is trucking them some distance to provide an FM home for a couple of ESPN Radio affiliates.

In the first deal, filed with the FCC on Sept. 12, Des Moines listeners to ESPN Radio’s local affiliate will soon have an another over-the-air listening option.

Saga is purchasing K241CC, presently assigned to 96.1 MHz in Rochester, Minn., and trucking it some 210 miles south to Iowa’s state capitol.ESPN Radio

E-String Wireless Ltd., is selling the silent facility for $25,000; $20,000 has already been placed in escrow by Saga.

Once in Des Moines, the translator will be used to simulcast “ESPN Des Moines” KRNT-AM 1350. KRNT is a Class B at 5kw with 1 tower during daylight hours and three towers at nighttime.

In a similar move, Saga has finalized its acquisition of W293BL, at 106.5 MHz in Saranac Lake, N.Y. The company purchased the translator for $45,000 from Ted Morgan-led Saranac Lake Radio LLC.

The facility is presently located adjacent to famed Lake Placid, site of the 1980 Winter Olympic Games. But, it’s not staying there.

In fact, Saga is moving the facility to Portland, Me.

While within the 250-mile transmitter-to-transmitter rules under the FCC’s AM Revitalization Act, such a trip by car is a 300-mile, five-and-a-half hour car ride across Vermont and New Hampshire.

Once the moving vans are unpacked, W293BL will set up shop at 101.5 MHz and bring Class B WZAN-AM 970 “ESPN Portland” an FM signal.

Jason James of Patrick Communications served as the broker in this transaction.

Meanwhile, in the Land of Lincoln, a Saga News/Talker in the state capital is gaining a second FM signal.

wtaxWTAX-AM 1240 in Springfield, Ill., which is presently using 250-watt translator W298AP in the city, is acquiring W259CM and relocating it from the small town of Minier, Ill., located near Bloomington, Ill.

Saga Communications is paying $23,000 for the facility from Sylvia Ko, with all funds going to Footprint Radio Broadcasting Ministry.

The asset purchase agreement did not elaborate on the arrangement between Footprint and Ko, or the circumstances surrounding the payments.

About The Author: Adam R Jacobson is a veteran radio industry journalist and advertising industry analyst with general, multicultural and Hispanic market expertise. From 1996 to 2006 he served as an editor at Radio & Records.

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