New signal this fall

Maine Public Classical heads for Midcoast

Aug 09, 2017

Maine Public has announced it has entered into an agreement to bring 24-hour FM classical music service to the Midcoast region of Maine in early fall with the purchase of a full-power radio station, 96.7 FM in Boothbay Harbor, from Blueberry Broadcasting.

This will be the newest and sixth signal for Maine Public Classical, joining FM stations 104.1 in Portland, 106.1 in Bangor, 93.7 in Milbridge, 99.7 in Waterville and 91.5 in Fryeburg. The Maine Public Classical network premiered in May 2016. The 96.7 coverage area will reach more than 350,000 listeners in Maine.

The coverage area, from a broadcast tower site in Damariscotta, includes many of the coastal communities from Thomaston to Brunswick, including Boothbay, Wiscasset, Bath and many of the peninsulas and islands of Maine. The signal will provide strong coverage in Augusta, Gardiner and Hallowell. Other areas that may be able to access the signal, depending on specific location and terrain, are Lewiston-Auburn; and the Rockland, Rockport and Camden regions.

“We are really excited to have found a classical solution for areas of Maine’s Midcoast,” said Mark Vogelzang, Maine Public’s president and CEO. “The 96.7 is a very powerful signal that will reach a large part of the coast and interior of Maine.”

The purchase price for the station is $550,000. Blueberry Broadcasting, owner of local stations WVOM (formerly WRKD) AM; and WMCM and WQSS FM, currently simulcasts rock music from the Augusta studios of WTOS FM on the frequency. In late spring, as part of Maine Public’s Charting A Bold Future campaign, a donor stepped forward and made a generous $100,000 gift to begin the fundraising effort for a signal in the Midcoast area. Additional fundraising around the acquisition will continue for the rest of 2017 and into 2018.

Maine Public will continue to add additional frequencies across the state in areas that cannot access Maine Public Classical as signals become available that meet Maine Public’s purchase criteria. Maine Public Classical also is available streaming at MainePublic.org; on a mobile app for smartphones and tablets; and over Maine Public’s statewide HD2 Radio signals.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.

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