Broadcast areaWestern North Carolina
Frequency570 kHz
BrandingNews Radio 570
AffiliationsFox News Radio
Premiere Networks
Compass Media Networks
Carolina Panthers Radio Network
First air date
February 21, 1927; 97 years ago (1927-02-21) at 7pm wavelength 254.1
Call sign meaning
Wonderful Western North Carolina
Technical information
Facility ID2946
Power5,000 watts
WebcastListen Live

WWNC (570 kHz) is a commercial AM radio station in Asheville, North Carolina. It broadcasts a news/talk radio format and is owned by iHeartMedia, Inc. The studios and transmitter are on Summerlin Road in Ashville.

WWNC is powered at 5,000 watts. By day, it is non-directional. But at night, to protect other stations on 570 AM from interference, it uses a directional antenna with a four-tower array.[1]


Weekdays begin with a local information and interview program, "First News with Mark Starling." Much of the rest of the schedule is nationally syndicated shows, largely from co-owned Premiere Networks: "The Glenn Beck Program," "The Clay Travis and Buck Sexton Show," "The Sean Hannity Show," "The Ramsey Show with Dave Ramsey," "Coast to Coast AM with George Noory" and "This Morning, America's First News with Gordon Deal."

Weekends feature specialty shows on money, health, real estate, travel, home repair, technology and the law. Weekend syndicated shows include "The Kim Komando Show", "At Home with Gary Sullivan," "Bill Handel on the Law," "The Weekend with Michael Brown," "Sunday Night Live with Bill Cunningham" and "Somewhere in Time with Art Bell." Most hours begin with an update from Fox News Radio.


Early years

WWNC signed on the air on February 21, 1927 at 7:00pm. It is Asheville's oldest radio station and among the oldest in North Carolina.[2] The studios were at the Vanderbilt Hotel.[citation needed] Other broadcast locations have included the Flatiron Building[3] and the Citizen-Times Building when it was owned by the daily newspaper.[citation needed] For most of its early years, WWNC was powered at 1,000 watts.[4] The call sign refers to "Wonderful Western North Carolina".[5]

In its early days, WWNC, started by the Asheville Chamber of Commerce, provided weather and road reports, and music at night. Country legend Jimmie Rodgers[6] and Bascom Lamar Lunsford were among the stars who performed on the station. Information included "local sporting events, crop futures and farmers markets, and social and economic affairs (billed as being everything 'from house work to bridge')."[5] WWNC also aired church services. Because the station could be heard throughout the Eastern United States and even in Canada and Mexico, WWNC became valuable in attracting tourists.[5] On October 10, 1931, WWNC changed its affiliation from CBS Radio to the NBC Red Network.[7] WWNC carried NBC's schedule of dramas, comedies, news, sports, soap operas, game shows and big band broadcasts during the "Golden Age of Radio."

Popular shows

On September 10, 1936, President Franklin Roosevelt spoke at McCormick Field. WWNC broadcast the speech.[8] The station was the Western North Carolina home to Amos and Andy, Fibber McGee and Molly and Jack Benny. In 1938, WWNC was one of the many stations broadcasting Orson Welles' The War of the Worlds.

The first time the world heard Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys was February 2, 1939, at 3:30 pm when the group played a fifteen-minute segment on Mountain Music Time. At the time, WWNC was an NBC affiliate, owned by the Asheville Citizen-Times. Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys played the daily 3:30-3:45 Mountain Music spot until April 1, 1939.

MOR and Country

As network programming moved from radio to television, WWNC switched to a full service, middle of the road (MOR) format, including popular adult music, news and sports.[9][10][11][12] In 1969, WWNC switched from MOR to country music.

In the days before FM became popular, WWNC was sometimes the highest-rated station in the United States with an Arbitron share over 40 percent, occasionally as high as 50 percent for morning drive time disc jockey Scotty Rhodarmer.[13] It was the top station in the Asheville radio market for many years.[14] In 2000, it was acquired by Capstar, which was in turn acquired by Clear Channel Communications, a forerunner of today's iHeartMedia.[15]

Talk Radio

In 2002, WWNC changed its format from country music (except for the Scotty Rhodarmer morning show) to all-talk, taking over talk shows previously heard on WTZY (now WPEK).[16] In 2004, Rhodarmer retired as WWNC morning host after more than 40 years in the position and 50 years as a station employee. In 1979, he had 56 percent of the audience according to Arbitron, more than any other local radio personality.[10] His theme song was "Carolina in the Morning". On June 18, 2010, many of the former DJs had a reunion. They included Rhodarmer, Frank Byrd, Wiley Carpenter, John Roten, John Anderson and Randy Houston.[13]

Western Carolina University broadcast a program in December 2010 on WWNC recreating Welles' 1938 broadcast of A Christmas Carol, including Arthur Anderson, who at age 16 performed with Welles in the original broadcast.[11]

On January 23, 2012, Pete Kaliner, who worked at WBT in Charlotte, North Carolina, from 1999 to 2011, took the afternoon slot. Sean Hannity moved from 3 p.m. back to 6 p.m., where his show had been since Matt Mittan left the station. Kaliner said his show would feature "a wide-ranging discussion of all things in Western North Carolina".[17]


  1. ^ Radio-Locator.com/WWNC
  2. ^ Neufeld, Rob (3 January 2016). "Visiting Our Past: Recognizing history as it happens". Asheville Citizen-Times. Retrieved 5 January 2016.
  3. ^ Kennell, Tiana (May 15, 2024). "Flat Iron Hotel, Luminosa restaurant opens in downtown Asheville". Asheville Citizen-Times.
  4. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1935 page 48, Broadcasting & Cable
  5. ^ a b c Chesky, Anne (May 24, 2024). "WNC History: Asheville's Flatiron Building, from 'Human Fly's' 1926 climb to today's hotel". Asheville Citizen-Times.
  6. ^ Neufeld, Rob (23 January 2023). "Visiting Our Past: Toasting ups and downs of the 1920s in WNC". Asheville Citizen-Times.
  7. ^ "WWNC, WIS Join NBC" (PDF). Broadcasting. October 15, 1931. Retrieved September 29, 2014.
  8. ^ "Today in Asheville history, Sept. 10". Asheville Citizen-Times. 10 September 2015. Retrieved 6 October 2015.
  9. ^ Tony Kiss, "WWNC radio celebrates three-quarters of a century", Asheville Citizen-Times, 17 February 2002.
  10. ^ a b "Rhodarmer an institution; WNC's mornings won't be the same without his voice", Asheville Citizen-Times, 26 December 2004.
  11. ^ a b Tony Kiss, "Tickets on sale for WCU's re-creation of radio ‘Carol'", Asheville Citizen-Times, 6 August 2010.
  12. ^ Rob Neufeld, "Toasting ups and downs of the 1920s in WNC," Asheville Citizen-Times, 13 January 2014, p. B4.
  13. ^ a b Tony Kiss, "WWNC stars of yesteryear remember the 'magic' they created in Asheville", Asheville Citizen-Times, 19 June 2010.
  14. ^ Kiss, Tony (17 April 1994). "Tune in new tunes across local airwaves". Asheville Citizen-Times. p. 1L – via newspapers.com.
  15. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 2005 page D-375, Broadcasting & Cable
  16. ^ Tony Kiss, "Local radio stations swap formats Monday", Asheville Citizen-Times, 15 March 2002
  17. ^ Kiss, Tony (20 January 2012). "Pete Kaliner promises lively show on Asheville radio station WNNC [sic]". Asheville Citizen-Times.

35°35′49″N 82°36′20″W / 35.59694°N 82.60556°W / 35.59694; -82.60556