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WKGE is an American AM radio station licensed to broadcast on 850 kHz at 10 kW day and night, serving the community of Johnstown, Pennsylvaniamarker. The station is a quasi-satellite of WWGE in Lorettomarker.

History

First signing on the air in 1922 on a number of frequencies including 833 kHz, 1170 khz, 1310 kHz and finally in 1941 to 1400 kHz, this station was known for much of its history as WJAC, under common ownership with WJAC-TV for many years. WJAC broadcast on AM-1400 until 1963 when the station migrated to AM-850 and increased power from 500 watts to 10,000 watts using a very complex directional array.

St Francis College (now University) in Loretto PA subsequently filed for the soon to be vacant AM-1400 frequency. The 1965 Broadcast Yearbook lists the start date for WWSF-AM 1400 as Oct. 7, 1963. Some radio historians date AM-1400 in Cambria County back as far as 1925, however the station owned by Johnstown Automobile Company (WHPB) originally broadcast in 1925 on AM-1170 then AM-1310, changed call letters to WJAC in 1930 but didn't move to AM-1400 until sometime between 1935 and 1942, probably 1941. WWSF now WWGE licensed to Loretto PA started broadcasting in 1963.

Forever Broadcasting moved the calls and format of WNTJmarker over to 850 AM, where it had been operating as a simulcast of the news–talk programming on WNTW in Somerset, PAmarker. It has since moved back to 1490 kHz with Forever's divestiture of the 850 signal and subsequent LMA of the 1490 signal. Birach, who purchased the 850 signal in November 2007, now airs a simulcast of talk station WWGE-AM 1400 in Loretto. An interesting side note - The simulcast of WKGE and WWGE in a way brings the history of this station back around full circle. From 1941 to 1963 WJAC-AM broadcast on AM-1400. Now the programming of AM-1400 from Loretto, PA Cambria County is broadcast on AM-850 reuniting the two frequencies.

The station was the first to sign on in Johnstown as WJAC at 1400 kHz, then moved to 850 kHz in the early 1960s.

Station sale

The current license holder, Forever Communications of Altoona, Pennsylvaniamarker announced an agreement to sell WNTJ to Birach Broadcasting of Southfield, Michiganmarker, with the transfer of ownership finalized by the end of 2007, according to the FCC website. Birach had acquired both WNTJ and WCNDmarker in Shelbyville, Kentuckymarker in the transaction, but no studio or office building was acquired for WNTJ. Birach instead opted to simulcast talk station WWGE in Loretto, Pennsylvaniamarker via an agreement with WWGE's owner, Pennsylvania Radiowerks.

WKGE is operated using an unusual directional nine-tower array that requires a lot of maintenance, and Forever Broadcasting was trying to sell the station for a while. The array, sitting on of land, is located in Paint Township, Somerset County, Pennsylvaniamarker.

WKGE currently airs the Pittsburgh Penguins [362337]. According to the FCC filing, the proposed sales price for the station is $230,000.[362338]

Programming

WKGE primarily mirrors WWGE's lineup of DC and the Family, The Laura Ingraham Show, The Mike O'Meara Show, and Sporting News Radio, along with WWGE's sports programming. However, WKGE also carries The Rush Limbaugh Show, which WWGE does not.

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