Tag: radio

Happy Birthday CKPG!

CKPG radio signed on the air in Prince George at 5:00 pm, February 8, 1946. I wasn’t around back then, but I did show up a few years later – 1986 (with Doug Jones).

Mike Benny - Doug Jones - CKPG
Mike Benny and Doug Jones – CKPG Radio circa 1987

From the history books…

… from radiowest.ca
“In 1946, CKPG Prince George signed on at 5:00 p.m., with 250 watts on graveyard frequency 1230 KHz. A license had been issued to brothers Cecil and Frank (Tiny) Elphicke in November 1944. Tiny had been General Manager of CKWX Vancouver since 1942, previously managing CFAC Calgary, CJCA Edmonton and CKRC Winnipeg. CKPG moved to its long time home of 550 KHz about a year after sign-on…”

Cecil and Jack - CKPG
Cecil Elphicke with station PD Jack Carbutt – CKPG

… from the UNBC archives
“In November 1944, the Canadian Department of Transport granted a license to operate a radio station to brothers Cecil and Frank (Tiny) Elphicke of CKPG Radio Limited. Land was purchased in May 1945 for the transmitter site near the Hudson Bay Slough in Prince George. Construction of the transmitter began in August, and Radio Station CKPG Limited was incorporated and capitalized at $25,000 (2500 shares at 10.00 per share). CKPG signed on the air on at 5:00 p.m. on 8 February 1946, operating on 1230 kHz.”

… from BCRadioHistory
“CKPG studios were in Ritz-Kiefer Hall on George Street and the 250-watt transmitter was at South Fort George. Radio Station CKPG Ltd. was a CBC Trans-Canada affiliate.”

… from BroadcastingHistory.ca
“The PG in the call letters represented Prince George. CKPG was owned by Radio Station CKPG Ltd. The original staff of three consisted of Cecil Elphicke (Managing Director), Ray Tate (Engineer) and Jack Carbutt (announcer). Mayor Jack Nicholson said at the time, “CKPG will make us better and closer neighbours”.”

I spent 13 years on the air with 550 CKPG before moving to 101.3 HITS FM (CKKN-FM) in 1999.  CKPG Radio eventually morphed into 99.3 The Drive (CKDV-FM), but the call letters are still alive with our TV station, websites, business name and all of our email addresses – @ckpg.com.

On March 1, 1981 Radio Station CKPG Ltd. opened Prince George’s first FM radio station, CIOI-FM “Country 101”. In 1995 the calls were changed to CKKN-FM “Kickin Country”, in 1999 CKKN-FM became HITS-FM and then in 2006 it became 101.3 The River.

Hits-FM becomes The River – January 2006

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and the winner is… Rae Wely!

At the Treasure Cove Show Lounge

What a great night of local music! Thank you Demmy Hawkey, Rae Wely, Genevieve Jade Tucker and Erika Callewaert You’re all so talented! Thank you Lee-Wai Yu and Bright City Heights – Best House Band ever. And congrats to Rae Wely – Grand Prize Winner of 101.3 The River Voice!

Can’t wait to play your song on The River.

Congratulations Rae Wely

The winner of The River’s Voice gets recording time at Cheslatta Studios, radio air-play on The River and about $1,800 in gift cards from assorted sponsors.

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The River Wake Up with Mike and Jessica

The Wake Up with Mike and Jessica – May 20, 2014

Here’s the “official” release…

MAY 15, 2014
The River Wake Up 8.0

PRINCE GEORGE: This morning, at a widely attended press conference, 101.3 The River programming phenom Ron Polillo announced the return of Jessica Rankin to The River’s flagship morning franchise. As usual Polillo kicked off the press conference by joking with reporters. “Knock knock” he said, “Who’s there?”, “Co-host”, “Co-host who?”, “Jessica Rankin!”

Knock, knock…

“Jessica is so well known in this community, there’s not much more I can say except, we are super excited and slightly nervous about this whole thing”, Polillo said.

Jessica has been honing her skills in the Far East, writing songs about The Great Lakes and trains and is excited to be back in the North Chair (since she didn’t get much of a send-off the last time she left and is still quite bitter about that).

Jessica hosted The River morning show with Mike Benny for nearly four years and currently holds the record for longest serving co-host. Jessica will hold two titles as “#4” and “#8”.

Jennifer Lee will now hold the record for shortest serving co-host, but retains the official title of “#7.1”.

For his part, Mike Benny has apparently used up all the co-hosts and is starting over again in reverse alphabetical order using a proximity bias. Fitting that criteria to a T, is Jessica Rankin.

“The River Wake Up with Mike & Jessica” will officially kick-off after the May Long Weekend on Tuesday May 20, 2014.

For promotional and advertising opportunities please contact:

Ron Polillo
Program Director
101.3 The River

River logo

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I'm on vacation!

I'm on vacation, I'm on vacation!!
I’m on vacation, I’m on vacation!!

This is one of my favourite top five lists for two reasons…

1. Posting it usually means I’m on vacation.

2. Posting it usually means I’m on vacation.

Mike’s top five signs that Mike is on vacation (circa 2008)…

#5. I am drinking coffee after 3pm!

#4. I’m not getting paid, but it’s only slightly less than I usually get paid.

#3. I have no reason to ever leave Tim Hortons!

#2. I walk around saying things like, “Looks like a high of 27 today. Keep listening for your chance to call..” to total strangers.

#1. I’m getting up at 7am and that’s sleeping in three hours!


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Steps to avoid spreading the flu

from wikipedia

The flu is starting to circulate around here, people are dropping like flies.

The radio station is taking steps to avoid spreading the flu, as a matter of fact we are taking five steps to avoid spreading the flu.

#5. Surgical masks, rubbing alcohol and Swiffers are now available at the reception desk for all visiting guests.

#4. Not only washing our own hands, but now the Traffic Dept. will wash all visitors and guests hands as well.

#3. Instead of the DJ’s shaking hands with guests and visitors we now just wave and nervously smile from the other side of the protective glass.

#2. “Staying home when you don’t feel well” has been replaced with “coming to work and working, but keeping to yourself and not touching anyone else’s stuff”.

#1. Each DJ will now be issued their own 20 pack of Tim Bits instead of the usual communal 900 pack that they usually just dump in the hall.

#1a. The breaktime ritual of all the DJ’s passing around one juice box and taking a sip has been replaced by group visits to the 2nd floor fountain.

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Mike's top five advertisements you might hear on the CBC

The CBC has decided to start running radio advertisements on CBC Radio-2. They think they can make 50-million dollars!

CBC Radio adsWhat? You can make money by running ads on a radio station?! Hmmm, that might just be crazy enough to work.

Mike’s top five advertisements you might hear on the CBC

#5. Fair-trade caffeine free, half-calf double-decaf chai latte mix.

#4. No-Doz.

#3. A ridiculous commercial featuring random CBC radio DJ’s dancing and lip syncing to Maroon Five’s Moves Like Jagger.

#2. Jian Ghomeshi’s new book. “I’m Just Me, Which is Better Than You”.

#1. The Fiddling East Coast Comedians Live at Budokann box set.

Any others? Comment here…

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Reasons for not getting rid of Mike's top five

Dear Mike & Lisa,

Just to let you know that the top 5 thing seriously doesn’t work. It is the reason all my colleagues and myself cannot listen to the river in the morning. Just some constructive criticism do what you may with it. Get rid of it if you are after listeners.

Thank you, Jason

Mike’s top five reasons for not getting rid of Mike’s top five.

#5. It would create an opportunity for an even more “tough to listen to” top 6 or top 7 list or God forbid a top 10 list.

#4. The void created between 7:10 and 7:12 every morning might cause people to nod off and go back to sleep making them late for work.

#3. What? And admit we were wrong about the whole “Mike’s top five will make us number one”, that we told Jim Pattison back in the 90’s.

#2. It’s hard to appreciate really good humor, unless you have something to compare it to.

#1. Without a daily counting backwards exercise DJ’s lose their counting backwards abilities. That’s what happened to Casey Kasem.

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New co-host for The River Wake Up

MAY 24, 2011 – PRINCE GEORGE: In the words of 101.3 The River’s program director Ron Polillo, “Ladies and gentlemen, we have a number seven!”

At a special ‘media event’ draped in all the suspense of an American Idol final, Ron Polillo announced that Ashley Hinton has been selected to fill the North Chair position on Prince George’s favourite morning show. Ashley, a long-time daytime host on a cross-town rival radio station will join Mike Benny on The River Wake Up, starting Tuesday May 31, 2011.

A spokesperson for Mike Benny said, “Mr Benny is thrilled with the selection committee’s choice and particularly happy to pluck Number Seven from one of our competitors. Mr. Benny is also appreciative of the efforts of Weekend Jen who has been doing extra duty filling in since the departure of Number Six over a month ago.”

For her part, Weekend Jen said, “I’ll just be damn glad to get a friggen day off!”

Mike Benny has had a long string of co-host since 1999, Ashley will make it seven.

Ashley is a Leo, she is friends with most people, fairly balanced and has killer hair. “I like Party Mix or Chinese Crackers – toss up. They both give you REALLY bad breath though, so don’t sit next to me on the bus.”

She could not be reached for comment, however on her Facebook page she commented, “I am happy to be joining the River and glad to working with Mark Benny. I’ve heard so much about him. Mostly from him..”

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Wow, that was fun. I can't wait til 2036

Mike Benny
Mike Benny’s cake!

My 25th anniversary! What an awesome day. It was fun to have all the former co-hosts on the show. Thank you to Melissa, Jodi, Amy, Jessica and Lindsay (however Jessica was the only one that actually brought beer). It’s so cool to think we’re all still connected, despite the fact you’ve all moved on (ran away). I really appreciate your calls and kind words (and unkind words and well prepared bits).

It was great to hear from Heather, Afton, Tamara and many other via FB and I really appreciate the calls from Dan Rogers and some long-time listeners.

Thank you to Weekend-Jen for the baked goods (wow). Thank you to Faydra for the treats and words of wisdom. Thank you to Shawna for the call and the top five list. Thanks to my long time BFAW – Doug Jones and the whole Jones family for the pop up card, the drinks and the song. Lisa D, thank you for the Timmies, your kind words and your work on the chorus. Thanks Boss-Ron for arranging everything. It was a surprise and it was awesome! I can’t wait to see what you guys put together for my next 25th!

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