Local Content and Services Report

2018 Local Content and Services Report

WNCW is a proud part of Isothermal Community College.  The college is our license holder.  WNCW supports the educational mission of the college through the operation of a full service public radio station providing news, information, and music programming to the region.  We serve as an effective way for Isothermal to encourage the “pursuit of life-long learning.”  Our region has a diverse and varied culture that is highly regarded across the nation.  WNCW makes an honest effort to support the arts, innovation, economic development, and the rich musical and cultural heritage of Western North Carolina and the surrounding region.  This is accomplished by recognizing and working with partners in our area to identify important needs and issues of importance and then providing the support and programming to fulfill our common mission.  Ultimately, our mission is to educate the listening public and create a healthy respect for the rich cultural heritage that abounds in our region.

WNCW provides our audience with local, regional, and national news, feature stories, and weekly in depth interviews regarding matters of importance.  This is accomplished via nationally syndicated programming and through original programming created in house by our staff.  These stories and interviews are our effort to shine a light on the various non-profits, arts organizations, community groups, cities, counties, health agencies, educational institutions, environmental advocacy groups, local, state, and national agencies, and more that provide opportunities and spearhead efforts to improve the lives of the residents in our broadcast region.  We provide a free daily arts events calendar called “Artbreak.”  Local arts organizations can submit their free listings to us via e-mail for airing on WNCW.  We have an on-line events calendar on our website, where any organization can submit a free listing to be added.  We highlight the musical events of non-profits for free during our Live Music Calendar that airs, multiple times a day, Monday through Saturday.  We also provide locally produced educational short features like “Growing Local,” “Down the Road on the Blue Ridge Music Trails,” “History Dibs and Dabs” and several more.

The region that is covered by WNCW’s broadcast range has a diverse and rich musical heritage.  It covers everything from the bluegrass and mountain music of the Appalachian Mountains, the classic country music that originated in Tennessee, to the sound of the blues that had part of its beginnings in South Carolina.  One of our most important goals is the preservation and highlighting of that musical heritage that is so important to our region.  We accomplish this with our eclectic weekday music mix.  During any broadcast day you will hear, bluegrass, blues, soul, classic country, old time, singer songwriters, folk, celtic, reggae, classic rock, americana, jazz, and more.  We also provide several shows of block programming in the evenings and on weekends that focus strictly on a single style of music.  Most of it is produced in house and includes programs like: : Goin’ Across the Mountain - highlighting bluegrass, This Old Porch – highlighting old time, The Saturday Night House Party – highlighting blues music, The Gospel Truth – highlighting gospel music, Local Color –highlighting the music of local and regional artists, and many others.  WNCW is also home to Studio B, our live performance studio.  There are a wealth of local, regional, and national artists that are based in the region, or tour through the area regularly.  Our Studio B sessions provide the artists with a chance to have their music highlighted live on the air during a mini concert and interview session that is conducted by our on air hosts.  It also gives our audience a chance to get some deeper knowledge about some of their favorite artists, while hearing them perform live.  We’ve had acts like Rhonda Vincent and the Rage, Marty Stuart, Lake Street Dive, Del McCoury, Warren Haynes and many more, grace us with a live performance on WNCW.

We also believe in sharing the knowledge of our industry.  WNCW works with Isothermal’s Broadcasting and Production Technology Curriculum to give students the chance to produce programming that airs on WNCW one night a week.  Students produce hours of music programming that are aired during our “ARC Overnight” program. We also provide opportunities for the students of Isothermal and other educational institutions through our internship program.  Students are able to get “hands on” experience to better prepare them for the working world.  During their internship, students spend time in our programming, business, and membership departments to get a full understanding of how our business functions.

We fully recognize that public radio broadcasters are genuinely licensed to serve the public and we are committed to doing just that.  We truly appreciate the opportunity we have to help educate, inform, and improve the lives of our audience.  All of the practices I’ve outlined above have given us a reputation for excellence though out Western North Carolina and beyond and  have made us a highly respected public radio station that is committed to serving the residents of Western North Carolina and the surrounding region.

The impact of WNCW’s key initiatives can be witnessed in various forms.  The continued support of our station through the generosity of our listeners who become members and financial supporters of the station is one.  It’s rewarding to know that our audience continues to find what we do relevant year after year and it’s important enough to them to support the station with their hard earned money.  We see the results on a regular basis through our member’s participation at various concerts, music and arts festivals, and charity events where we have a physical presence to support the effort.  We see our success in the army of people who are willing to volunteer to help during our semi-annual fund drives and at festivals and events across the region.  It’s evident through the many phone calls and e-mails we receive from members, and It’s visible in the tremendous support we receive from area businesses that continue to underwrite our programming.  Perhaps the best measurement of the impact we have comes from the comments of our members and those we collaborate with:

Words cannot express the joy of hearing so much new music each year.  I can barely keep up, and so much of it is so good.  I love the station’s praise of local music, and its commitment to new music in general.  The service you provide to the artists cannot be quantified, and it is all put into a context that can’t be argued with.  It must be such great fun to discover amazing new music daily.  We are so happy to be part of the family and will be getting our pledges in shortly.  Crowd Around the Mic is such a great idea to provide the avid listener a reminder of just how good the music was in a given year.

Thanks to all of you at WNCW,

James & Kathy MacLeod

I was listening this past Tuesday at around noon when this amazing live band came on and played some kind of "psychedelic soul and dance music" - it made me want to throw up my arms and holler.  I can't remember anything about who it was or where they were playing this weekend and I HAVE TO KNOW.  I should have called right away but you know how it is in the car.  Easily distracted.  If you could help me, I'd really appreciate it.  I love WNCW.  I just moved back to the states after living 9 years in Amsterdam.  Your station fills me with joy. 


Catherine Smith

WNCW provides Broadcasting and Production Technology students with excellent opportunities for academic knowledge and enhancement.  Students learn the format of the “ARC Overnight” radio program.  These same students learn how to produce and record the programming for “ARC.”  The main goal is for the students to produce professional programming that is broadcast on WNCW.  This opportunity is highly valuable to students as they learn how to follow the format guidelines in preparing and producing their “ARC Overnight” programming that will air on the station.

Broadcasting and Production Technology students are also afforded the opportunity to apply for student internship positions at WNCW.  College credit is awarded for the successful completion of an internship. 

We also encourage our students to volunteer at WNCW.  A number of our Broadcasting and Production Technology students will volunteer to assist with the station’s fundraising events and assist station personnel with various duties. 

There is a great benefit to the students, just by being in the same building with WNCW.  They get to see what it takes to run a professional public radio station on a daily basis, but they also gain exposure to the many professional musicians who come to WNCW for live performances in Studio B.  Several student interns have benefited from assisting with the load-in, set up, and take down involved with these visiting musicians.

Jay Coomes

Lead Instructor, Broadcasting and Production Technology

Isothermal Community College

WNCW’s support of our programming through their on-air calendar of events, and underwriting spots has broadened our exposure tremendously.  We are thankful to have the opportunity to co-produce an annual concert with WNCW through our “Goin’ Across the Mountain Live” concert.  This show not only showcases the talents of nationally renowned bluegrass artists on our local stage, it also allows our venue to grow our audience by exposing new people to our facility.  Over our many years working with WNCW we have been able to create new opportunities that mutually benefit the station, our facility and the communities we both serve. 

Russell Wicker

Executive Director

The Foundation Performing Arts and Conference Center

WNCW partners with many organizations throughout the year in support of several key initiatives that include the following:

1 - Preserving the musical heritage of our region

2 - Supporting conservation and revitalization efforts in our communities

3 - Educating and informing our listening audience on matters of concern

Key groups partnered with to preserve our musical heritage include:

a.            The Folk Heritage Committee

b.            Blue Ridge National Heritage Area

c.             The Don Gibson Theatre

d.            The Peace Center

e.            The Dianna Wortham Theatre

f.             Lake Eden Arts Festival

g.            Merlefest

h.            The Earl Scruggs Center

i.              The Blumenthal Performing Arts Center

j.             YAM – Young Appalachian Musicians

k.            Blue Ridge Music Trails

l.              Red, White and Bluegrass Festival

m.           Tryon Fine Arts Center

n.            The Foundation Performing Arts Center

Key groups partnered with in support of conservation and revitalization efforts

a.            NC Co-Operative Extension

b.            Riverlink

c.             Chimney Rock State Park

d.            Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation

e.            Town of Hendersonville, NC

f.             City of Greenville, SC

g.            Town of Saluda, NC

h.            Destination Cleveland County

i.              Asheville Downtown Assoc.

j.             Hagood Mill Historical Site in Pickens, Sc

k.            Rutherford County Tourism Development Authority

l.              McDowell County Tourism Authority

m.           Tryon International Equestrian Center

n.            NC Fish and Wildlife Commission

Key Groups partnered with in support of education and information

a.            Red Cross

b.            American Heart Association

c.             Relay for Life

d.            Pardee UNC Healthcare

e.            Rutherford Housing Authority

f.             Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity

g.            Isothermal Community College

h.            Rutherford Regional Hospital

i.              UNC Asheville

j.             Western Carolina University

k.            NC State University

l.              Wilkes Community College

m.           Warren Wilson College

n.            Rutherford County Schools

o.            Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity

p.            Rutherford County Humane Society

WNCW is dedicated to serving the needs of the various minority communities in our region.  We work with many local organizations and groups to support their efforts and address the needs in a number of methods.  We carry several syndicated public affairs programs that examine issues of importance to many different minorities.  Programs like, Making Contact and 51 Percent.  We also produce various programs ourselves to address many of these issues.  That include long form shows produced in house, local and national news stories, and features that specifically target issues of concern to various minority groups.

Several of our News Director’s Friday Feature Interviews in the past year focused on minority issues, help available to various minority groups etc. with conversations like the following:

Natasha Adwaters with the Children First Organization, located in Asheville, spoke to Paul Foster during this edition of The Friday Feature Interview of the Week.  As a new school year is getting underway, Adwaters talked about keeping school children fed and filling backpacks with needed supplies.

An interview about the Grown Man Club, a non-profit group based in Tryon, NC, as Founder and Executive Director of the group, Steven Green, was interviewed by WNCW.  The Grown Man Club wants to reach men of all backgrounds, but especially the African-American and Latino population.  It's about different cultures, harmony, and support for your fellow man.

November was National Native American Heritage Month, which made it a good time to spotlight The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.  Principal Chief Richard Sneed was interviewed about the roots and history of the Cherokee Nation. 

Our News Director also does a “More to the Story” feature each week.  WNCW works in partnership with several of the regional newspapers to take a more in depth look at some of the local and regional stories of importance making the news like the following:

North Carolina Documentary Filmmaker Anna Jones is receiving high acclaim, honors, and screenings across the nation and beyond for a film she made about her father.  "Chairman Jones: An Improbable Leader" is her inspiring story telling the story of James Jones, a black farmer in Eastern N.C. with only a 7th grade education, who became the first black school board chairman in the state around 1970.

Asheville Citizen-Times 'Community Engagement Editor' Casey Blake was guest.  Casey recapped the story about the body-cam video of a former Asheville Police Officer seen beating an African-American man, who was being taken in to custody for jaywalking.  Charges have since been filed against the former officer, while the victim is suing both the officer and the Police Department.

Stories features and interviews, like the ones above, allow WNCW to highlight the many needs and issues facing the minorities in our region.  It has been, and will continue, to be our goal to bring these issues to light and hopefully help spur progress in the communities we serve.

We can't stress enough the importance of CPB funding to WNCW.  The funding allows us to have enough professionally trained staff to make a real impact on the communities we serve.  Much of our coverage area in Western North Carolina is rural.  Through CPB funding WNCW is able to super serve these areas with news an information on issues and concerns that many might not otherwise be exposed to.  The Funding allows us to provide quality syndicated programming like Morning Edition and NPR News Headlines each hour.  It allows us to highlight and preserve the rich musical heritage of our region.  It allows us to support various non-profit groups and various other entities that would not have near the impact they do without a partner like WNCW to help spread their message. 

The fact that we receive CPB funding that covers part of our expenses, like staffing and program costs, allows us to divert some our revenue from membership and underwriting sales to other areas of desperate need.  In the past year, we put up a new antenna.  The old one had been in use since the station went on the air in 1989 and was severely outdated.  It had years of damage from the elements that had been patched up and band aided over to it's limits.  A new antenna was an absolute necessity, if we were to maintain our ability to broadcast and serve the community.  In the coming year, we are looking at the likely purchase of a new main transmitter as well.  It too is over 15 years old and in dire need of replacement.  We also upgraded much of the equipment in our live performance studio and made a small investment that has given us the ability to go outside the station and conduct live broadcasts in the community that sound as if we are in our studios at the station.  The purchase of new technology like this wouldn't be possible without our CPB funding. 

WNCW doesn't have the luxury of being in a large market city, like Boston, with millions of potential  supporters to draw from, so CPB funding is essential for our operation.  Without it, WNCW would likely not exist.  If it did, it would definitely be on a much smaller scale with a greatly decreased ability to serve the needs of our audience.