WRVV TheRiver97.3 logo.png
Broadcast areaSouth Central Pennsylvania
Frequency97.3 MHz (HD Radio)
BrandingThe River 97.3
FormatClassic rock
SubchannelsHD2: Talk (WHP)
First air date
June 1946 (1946-06) (as WHP-FM)
Former call signs
  • WHP-FM (1946–1990)
  • WXBB (1990)
  • WHP-FM (1990–1992)
Former frequencies
43.5 MHz (1945) (CP)
Call sign meaning
Technical information
Licensing authority
Facility ID15324
  • 15,000 watts (analog)
  • 475 watts (digital)[1]
HAAT260 meters (850 ft)
Transmitter coordinates
40°20′43.3″N 76°52′7.9″W / 40.345361°N 76.868861°W / 40.345361; -76.868861
Public license information
WebcastListen live (via iHeartRadio)

WRVV (97.3 FM, "The River 97.3") is a commercial FM radio station licensed to serve Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The station is owned by iHeartMedia, Inc. and broadcasts a classic rock format. The station's studios and offices are located at 600 Corporate Circle in Harrisburg.[2]

WRVV has an effective radiated power (ERP) of 15,000 watts. The transmitter antenna is on the WHP-TV broadcast tower on Blue Mountain in Susquehanna Township, Dauphin County at (40°20′43.1″N 76°52′8.3″W / 40.345306°N 76.868972°W / 40.345306; -76.868972).[3][4] It uses the slogan is "Real. Rock. Variety." WRVV broadcasts using HD Radio technology. Its HD2 digital subchannel simulcasts the talk radio programming on sister station WHP 580 AM.[5]



On January 10, 1945, WHP, Inc. applied to the Federal Communications Commission for a construction permit for a new station on 43.5 MHz on the original 42-50 MHz FM broadcast band.[6] After the FCC created the current FM band on June 27, 1945,[7] the Commission granted the permit on November 21, 1945, while modifying it by reassigning the station to 97.3 MHz on the new FM band. The FCC then granted permission to begin broadcasting at any time beginning on March 18, 1946.[6]

WHP, Inc operated the station under special temporary authority (STA) for several years, during which time numerous changes were made to the station's broadcast facilities.[6] In June 1946, the station first signed on with the WHP-FM call sign.[8] Its power was only 4,300 watts.[9] A TV station, WHP-TV, was added in 1953. WHP-AM-FM originally simulcast their programming. In the 1950s, it duplicated WHP about 50% of the broadcast day, with the remainder devoted to instrumentals and some classical music programming. In the 1960s, the station's format evolved to beautiful music, which would continue for nearly three decades. In the late 1980s, however, the soft instrumental format was aging and management decided a change was needed. By March 1988, WHP-FM had tweaked the format to "music-intensive adult contemporary".[10]


In February 1990, the station switched its call letters to WXBB, and flipped to Top 40/CHR as B97.3.[11] The Top 40 format was short-lived, and the station returned to easy listening as WHP-FM in December 1990.

In March 1992, WHP-AM-FM were sold to Pennsylvania Broadcasting Associates, a division of Dame Media, which separated the stations from WHP-TV.[12] Studios were moved out of the WHP-TV building to their current location at 600 Corporate Circle in Harrisburg. The FM station went through numerous changes following the sale.


The call sign was changed to WRVV in March 1992.[13] The station's branding was switched to The River 97.3. It was the first station in the country to be branded as The River.[14] WRVV's slogan was changed to "Rock and Roll without the Hard Edge." The station changed format to "Rock Adult Contemporary."[12][15]

The format played tracks from popular rock albums released over the previous 15 years intended for a general rock listener not interested in current titles.[16] The station's Operations Manager at the time, Chris Tyler, created the format.[17]

iHeartMedia ownership

In August 1998, the Dame Media stations, including WHP and WRVV, were sold to Clear Channel Communications, the forerunner to iHeartMedia, Inc.[18][19] The format changed to classic rock after the sale. In the mid-2000s, the station changed its slogan to "Real. Rock. Variety."

In 2004, WRVV and Cumulus Media's WNNK-FM were the first stations in Harrisburg to begin using HD Radio.[20] Since the mid-1990s, WRVV and WNNK frequently trade the number one spot in Nielsen Audio's Harrisburg-Lebanon-Carlisle radio market.


  1. ^ "Digital Radio Notification [WRVV]". fcc.gov. Federal Communications Commission. August 11, 2010. Retrieved 2018-11-14.
  2. ^ "THE RIVER 97.3 Contact Info: Number, Address, Advertising & More". iheart.com. Retrieved 2017-11-25.
  3. ^ "FM Query Results for WRVV". fcc.gov. Federal Communications Commission. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  4. ^ "TV Query Results for WHP-TV". fcc.gov. Federal Communications Commission. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  5. ^ https://hdradio.com/station_guides/widget.php?id=65HD Radio Guide for Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Archived 2015-12-22 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ a b c "History Cards for WRVV". fcc.gov. Federal Communications Commission. Retrieved 2018-12-09.
  7. ^ "In the Matter of Allocation of Frequencies to the Various Class of Non-Governmental Services in the Radio Spectrum from 10 Kilocycles to 30,000,000 Kilocycles (Docket No. 6651)" (PDF). fcc.gov. Federal Communications Commission. June 27, 1945. Retrieved 2018-12-09.
  8. ^ Portzline, Timothy (2011). Harrisburg Broadcasting. Charleston, South Carolina: Arcadia. p. 35. ISBN 9780738575070.
  9. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1950 page 256, Broadcasting & Cable
  10. ^ "WHP 97.3 Harrisburg Survey 03/07/88".
  11. ^ "Call Sign History, WRVV". fcc.gov. Federal Communications Commission. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  12. ^ a b Broadcasting Yearbook 1994 page B-313, Broadcasting & Cable
  13. ^ Portzline, Timothy (2011). Harrisburg Broadcasting. Charleston, South Carolina: Arcadia. p. 109. ISBN 9780738575070.
  14. ^ "Clear Channel Cuts Chris Tyler In Harrisburg". mediaconfidential.blogspot.com. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  15. ^ "WTPA Faithful: Unwilling To "Bid" Adieu as Deadline Approaches". radioinfo.com. Archived from the original on 2016-06-17. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  16. ^ "Radio Station Format Guide". nyradioguide.com. Retrieved 2017-11-26.
  17. ^ "The River's (WRVV) Morning Man: Chris Tyler". harrisburgpa.com. Retrieved 2016-05-22.
  18. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 2001 page D-381
  19. ^ "COMPANY NEWS; OUTDOOR ADVERTISER BUYING DAME MEDIA, A BROADCASTER". Bloomberg News. June 17, 1998. Retrieved 2018-05-11.
  20. ^ Portzline, Timothy (2011). Harrisburg Broadcasting. Charleston, South Carolina: Arcadia. p. 117. ISBN 9780738575070.