Beacon Flips Again

Warren-based Beacon Broadcasting has flipped another radio station format, again.

This time, it’s Farrell PA-licensed Youngstown rimshot WLOA/1470, which has moved from carrying Sporting News Radio to…simulcasting the classic country format of Beacon’s other Pennsylvania-side AM outlet, WGRP/940 Greenville PA.

It’s not the first, or even the second, time that the two Mercer County PA radio stations have simulcast programming.

In fact, WGRP had been paired with WLOA in the sports format (“Your Double-Play Combination”) until recently, when it started spinning the classic country tunes.

And the two stations were paired before that as a simulcast of Beacon flagship WANR/1570 Warren, in a locally-produced “family friendly oldies” format still carried by WANR as a solo outlet under the name “Classic Hits 1570”.

The WLOA format change was first reported by PBRTV Shenango/Mahoning Valley contributor Tom Lavery, who then tipped us about the format change at 1470.

Lavery tells us that after being knocked off the air last week, presumably from the windy remnants of Hurricane Ike, WLOA is back on the air again with the new format.

And via WGRP’s webcast late this morning (direct link here), we heard Beacon veteran Johnny Rogers welcome in the new listeners from Hubbard, Liberty, Youngstown and other Mahoning Valley communities.

We haven’t heard, but we presume both stations will continue in their role as the Mercer County home of Pittsburgh Pirates baseball. The team’s games have been carried on both 940 and 1470 through all the recent format changes, including on 940 in its classic country format, and on both stations back when they were simulcasting 1570’s oldies the rest of the day.

This being a Beacon-owned station, the liners still only refer to “Classic Country 940”, and we only heard WGRP’s legal ID. But Rogers was using the name “Classic Country 940 and 1470” on air…

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