Frequency1340 kHz
BrandingThe Ticket
First air date
September 16, 1940 (as WLAV)
Former call signs
  • WLAV (1940–1979)
  • WTWN (1980–1984)
  • WLAV (1984–1994)
  • WBBL (1994–2009)
Call sign meaning
WJR in Western Michigan[1]
Technical information[2]
Licensing authority
Facility ID41679
Power1,000 watts unlimited
Transmitter coordinates
42°57′5″N 85°41′55″W / 42.95139°N 85.69861°W / 42.95139; -85.69861
Translator(s)106.1 W291DJ (Grand Rapids)
Public license information
WebcastListen live

WJRW (1340 AM) – branded as The Ticket – is a commercial sports radio station licensed to Grand Rapids, Michigan, serving the Grand Rapids metropolitan area. Owned by Cumulus Media, WJRW is the Grand Rapids affiliate for the BetQL Network, CBS Sports Radio, and Fox Sports Radio. The WJRW studios and transmitter both reside in Grand Rapids. In addition to a standard analog transmission, the station also simulcasts over low-power FM translator W291DJ (106.1 FM) and is available online.


On September 16, 1940, the station signed on under the WLAV call sign (which stood for Leonard Adrian Versluis, the station's original owner). It added WLAV-FM in 1947. WLAV became a full-time Top 40 music station in the summer of 1963, and was originally consulted by Mike Joseph, who later went on to develop the Hot Hits format in the late 1970s. One popular WLAV personality was Larry Adderley, who would later work as a sportscaster at various radio and TV stations in the Detroit media market as well as an announcer for the Detroit Tigers.

WLAV soon overtook rival stations WGRD and WMAX as the dominant hit music station in Grand Rapids, but its market share declined in the 1970s with the popularity of FM stations such as WZZM, WGRD (which had added an FM simulcast outlet), and WLAV's own sister station WLAV-FM, which found success as an album rock station. "Music Radio WLAV" went to a more adult contemporary sound in 1974, which continued until 1980, when the station tried a talk radio format as the "1340 Townhouse", featuring popular talk show hosts Lee Harris and Bob Kwesell. Call sign was WTWN.

The heritage WLAV call letters were restored in 1984, and the station flipped to oldies, which lasted for the next eight years. Although WLAV was a modest success with oldies, it was hurt when WODJ debuted in 1989 as an FM oldies station with a stronger signal and swept the ratings.

In 1993, the format changed to a modern rock-based sound called "1340 Underground". This happened shortly after an experiment with changing the format to modern rock on WLAV-FM had failed. WLAV-FM then reverted to classic rock. The "1340 Underground" format gained a considerable cult following in the Grand Rapids area, even though the night-time signal was poor.[citation needed]

The WBBL call letters and sports radio format debuted on May 25, 1994, when ownership of the radio station had changed.[3] On May 28, 2009, WBBL began simulcasting its sports programming on 107.3 FM in Greenville, which became WBBL-FM.

On July 27, 2009, the call sign on 1340 AM was changed to WJRW and the format was changed to talk radio on Tuesday, August 18, 2009.[4] The WJRW call letters were chosen to remind listeners that the station is co-owned and would carry many of the same Westwood One shows that are heard on 50,000 watt Detroit station WJR. The extra "W" signifies the Grand Rapids station is in the Western part of Michigan. WBBL-FM continued airing sports.

On January 8, 2011, the syndicated weekly Kim Komando Show switched to WJRW after airing for a decade on a competing station.[5] Shortly thereafter, Komando's technology column began appearing in the Sunday edition of The Grand Rapids Press.[6] On March 31, 2011, it was announced that local radio veteran Michelle McKormick would be joining WJRW as host of The Buzz with Michelle McKormick. Her show debuted on June 6, 2011.[7]

On January 4, 2019, the station switched to sports radio following the flip of co-owned WBBL-FM from sports to country music.[8][9] WJRW now carries a couple of shows previously heard on WBBL-FM, as well as programming from the CBS Sports Radio Network.

FM translator

Broadcast translator for WJRW
Call sign Frequency City of license FID ERP (W) HAAT Class Transmitter coordinates FCC info
W291DJ 106.1 FM Grand Rapids, Michigan 200865 75 79 m (259 ft) D 42°57′6″N 85°41′56″W / 42.95167°N 85.69889°W / 42.95167; -85.69889 LMS


  1. ^ "WJRW AM 1340 Grand Rapids - Michiguide.com Dials (J)". www.michiguide.com. Retrieved January 4, 2020.
  2. ^ "Facility Technical Data for WJRW". Licensing and Management System. Federal Communications Commission.
  3. ^ Stark, Phyllis (June 4, 1994). "Vox Jox". Billboard. Vol. 106, no. 23. p. 129.
  4. ^ "Citadel Broadcasting launches 24-hour news-and-talk format at 1340 AM on WJRW Radio". 18 August 2009.
  5. ^ ""The Kim Komando Show" debuts on WJRW 1340 on Saturday". 8 January 2011.
  6. ^ "Stories from Columnist Kim Komando". USA Today.
  7. ^ "Michelle McKormick returns to Grand Rapids radio, joins Newstalk WJRW-AM 1340". 31 May 2011.
  8. ^ "WBBL/Grand Rapids Changes Afoot, Morning Host Says 'Everyone Got Fired Today'". All Access. Retrieved 2019-01-04.
  9. ^ "Format Change Imminent At WBBL Grand Rapids As Airstaff Exits". RadioInsight. 2019-01-04. Retrieved 2019-01-04.