December 29, 1997
WPKL broadcasting Woodinville events
by Andrew Walgamott
WOODINVILLE--Radio Woodinville hit the airwaves December 12, broadcasting on 1610 AM.
But don't expect Top 40, call-in talk shows or sports chat, 10 watt WPKL's target audience is travelers and city residents. Listeners will be able to hear repeating notices on major city events like the Basset Bash, Fourth of July and Woodinville Light Festival, as well as how to find City Hall, according to Marie Stake, community relations coordinator. Stake said that public safety notices and weather conditions may also be broadcast.
While the station can be programmed to carry 200 different messages, the city can't do any commercial messages by FCC rules. Currently, Stake and fellow city staffer Karin Roberts' voices can be heard on the air. In the future, a former DJ who owns the company which installed the broadcasting equipment, may do voice overs. The city hopes to intercept traffic on nearby highways even though WPKL can only be heard in about a 2.5 mile radius from its 10-foot antenna on a building behind City Hall.
By comparison, 50,000 watt KIRO 710 can be heard for 100 miles. Staff has sent a request to the Washington Department of Transportation to put up signs along roadways advising motorists of the station. The City Council set aside $10,000 for the station last May.