WGEM-FM
Broadcast areaQuincy/Hannibal/Keokuk
Frequency105.1 MHz
BrandingWGEM Sports Radio 105.1
Programming
FormatSports radio
Affiliations
Ownership
Owner
WGEM-TV
History
First air date
August 1, 1947
Former call signs
WQDI (1947–1953)
Call sign meaning
Gem City (civic slogan of Quincy)
Technical information[2]
Licensing authority
FCC
Facility ID54281
ClassB
ERP26,500 watts
HAAT209 meters (686 ft)
Transmitter coordinates
39°57′4.00″N 91°19′53.00″W / 39.9511111°N 91.3313889°W / 39.9511111; -91.3313889 (WGEM-FM)
Links
Public license information
WebcastListen live
Websitewww.wgem.com/about-us/radio/

WGEM-FM (105.1 MHz; "Sports Radio 105.1") is a radio station in Quincy, Illinois, broadcasting a sports radio format. The station is the lone radio station owned by Gray Television, which owns WGEM-TV in Quincy, and is affiliated with ESPN Radio.

History

The station signed on August 1, 1947, as WQDI.[3][4] It was Quincy Newspapers' first broadcasting station, signing on five months before WGEM; it was also the first FM station in the market.[4] The WQDI callsign was retained until 1953, when the station became WGEM-FM to match the AM station and WGEM-TV.[5][6]

Logo as "News Talk 105"

For much of its early history, WGEM-FM was a simulcast of WGEM.[7] This ended by 1976, when the station implemented a country music format;[8] "Gem Country" lasted until 2002, when it gave way to a news/talk format.[9]

On February 1, 2021, Gray Television announced that it had entered into an agreement to acquire all Quincy Media television and radio properties for $925 million in a cash transaction. This included WGEM (AM) and WGEM-FM, as well as WGEM-TV.[1] The acquisition was completed on August 2.[10] At the time of the acquisition, Gray's only other radio property was KTXC in Lamesa, Texas, which was in the process of being divested in an unrelated concurrent deal;[11] by 2023, the WGEM radio stations were the only radio stations in Gray's holdings.[12]

In the later years of the news/talk format, WGEM-FM's programming was primarily centered around the local morning show "News Talk Live!", as well as simulcasts of WGEM-TV's newscasts and NBC Nightly News. Syndicated programming included Classic Radio Theater, Dave Ramsey, Markley, Van Camp and Robbins, Ben Shapiro, and Red Eye Radio.[13]

WGEM-FM dropped the news/talk format in favor of the sports radio programming previously heard on WGEM, primarily supplied by ESPN Radio, on March 1, 2023. The AM station had gone off the air in June 2022 due to technical problems; its programming had continued to be heard on FM translator W255CY (98.9), which shut down on March 1.[12] The station continues to air weather updates and breaking news coverage.[14] While most of WGEM's programming, including the local "WGEM SportsCenter" morning program, Quincy University athletics, and high school sports, moved to WGEM-FM,[13] the FM station's existing carriage of St. Louis Cardinals baseball was retained in lieu of WGEM's affiliation with the Chicago Cubs.[14] Competing talk station WTAD immediately acquired the rights to carry The Dave Ramsey Show.[14]

References

  1. ^ a b Goldsmith, Jill (February 1, 2021). "Gray Television Acquires Quincy Media For $925 Million In Cash". Deadline Hollywood. Penske Media Corporation. Retrieved February 1, 2021.
  2. ^ "Facility Technical Data for WGEM-FM". Licensing and Management System. Federal Communications Commission.
  3. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1948 (PDF). 1948. p. 178. Retrieved April 11, 2010.[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ a b "Why Advertise With WGEM Radio?". WGEM.com. June 10, 2008. Retrieved April 11, 2010.
  5. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1953 (PDF). 1953. p. 131. Retrieved April 11, 2010.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook-Marketbook 1954 (PDF). 1954. p. 130. Retrieved April 11, 2010.[permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1958 (PDF). 1958. p. A-278. Retrieved April 11, 2010.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1977 (PDF). 1977. p. C-132. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 8, 2010. Retrieved April 11, 2010.
  9. ^ "About WGEM". WGEM.com. Archived from the original on October 20, 2000. Retrieved April 11, 2010.
  10. ^ Howell, Jr., Hilton (August 2, 2021). "Gray Television Closes Quincy Acquisition". Gray Television. GlobeNewswire. Retrieved August 16, 2021.
  11. ^ Venta, Lance (June 8, 2021). "VCY America Acquires KTXC From Gray Television". RadioInsight. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  12. ^ a b "WGEM-FM To Flip To Sports As 1440 WGEM Signs Off". February 17, 2023. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  13. ^ a b Simon, Perry Michael (February 17, 2023). "WGEM-F/Quincy, IL Flipping To Sports". All Access. Retrieved March 10, 2023.
  14. ^ a b c Gough, J. Robert (February 21, 2023). "Death of WGEM-AM means Cubs have no Quincy-area radio affiliate". Muddy River News. Retrieved March 10, 2023.