KSOI 91.9 FM “Southern Iowa Community Radio” is now on the air with a mission of serving south-central Iowa. The station was launched recently by Grand River Valley Radio President Joe Hynek, who has been working to bring a station back to Clarke County for several years after a local commercial station was sold to Iowa Public Radio in 2004 and became a translator.
KSOI, at 19,000 watts, serves south-central Iowa and is expected to reach Clarke, Decatur, Union and Ringgold counties, as well as the areas along Interstate 35 between Des Moines, Osceola and areas further south.
Hynek has talked to locals about providing weekly programming including the Osceola, IA Police Chief and City Administrator. A methodist minister will be doing a Sunday morning program. A folk band will be performing live at the in September. The performance will be open to the public.
Hynek said his father Bill plans to have a gospel camp meeting show on Sundays. The Hynek family, who has its own singing group, will also provide some programming.
The radio station board is also working on developing a conservation program to discuss hunting, fishing, wildlife and conservation activities. KSOI is seeking the community’s input on programming and shows, as well as ways to help the community through radio, writes The Osceola Sentinel-Tribune
“We’re open to ideas,” Hynek told the paper. “It’s a community station so we’ve got a lot of flexibility.”
Hynek is still seeking a PD, an underwriter/sales manager, a board op, music librarian and other staffers.
A community advisory committee will be started at a future date. The committee will be in charge of monitoring the programming to make sure station staff and volunteers are staying on track as far as meeting the community’s needs.
RBR-TVBR observation: This is definitely community radio from the ground up—just like it has been done for decades on stations like WORT-FM Madison, WI, KAOS-FM Olympia, WA, KKFI-FM Kansas City, WMNF-FM Tampa, KZMU-FM Moab, UT, etc, etc. It’s a fresh palette: With the right programming, music and community affairs involvement, it will take off like the rest—and probably make decent money doing it. These are the stations that can easily steal audience locally from some of the juke box commercial FMs programmed thousands of miles away.