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definition - WEDO

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WEDO logo.png
City of license McKeesport, Pennsylvania
Broadcast area Pittsburgh metropolitan area
Branding "WEDO AM 810"
Slogan "Your Station of Nations"
Frequency 810 (kHz)
First air date 1947
Format Multicultural programming
Power 1,000 watts (daytime hours only)
Class D
Callsign meaning WE DO Radio
Owner AM 810 Incorporated
Webcast 64kbps MP3
Website www.wedo810.com

WEDO (810 AM) is a multicultural radio broadcasting outlet serving the area of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The station, which is owned by AM 810 Incorporated, broadcasts at a clear-channel frequency of 810 kHz with a power level of 1,000 watts. The city of license for the station is McKeesport, Pennsylvania. The station maintains its studios and offices on Lincoln Way in White Oak, Pennsylvania.

Because WEDO shares the same frequency as "clear channel" station WGY in Schenectady, New York; it broadcasts only during the daytime hours.


  History and programming background

The station's programming offerings consist of various Catholic, ethnic, oldies, and paid programs, not much different than when it first signed on the air back in 1947, at around the same time as another McKeesport-licensed radio station, WMCK AM 1360.

WEDO has had only this call sign, and only two owners in its six-decade history. Tri-City Broadcasting first put the station on the air and operated it until 1972, when it was purchased by 810, Inc., a wholly owned company headed by local entrepreneurs Ralph and Judith Baron. Following the death of Ralph Baron, Judy Baron, now residing in Florida, has recently established a trust that would control the station in the event of her death or incapacitation.

During the 60's and 70's, WEDO became known for its Top 40 music presentation and even received more notoriety when they relocated their studios and offices inside Midtown Plaza Mall on Fifth Avenue in downtown McKeesport during the 1970s. The mall, one of the first in suburban Pittsburgh, enabled shoppers to watch the DJ's in real time as they did their on-air shifts.

In the early 1980s, when FM emerged as the leading technology for music, WEDO gradually dropped its music for the program-oriented format that it originally had in its formative years. As McKeesport's downtown economy continued to deteriorate, so did tenant business in Midtown Plaza Mall, as many of the stores went out of business or relocated into the suburbs. With few tenants left in the building, the property's managers turned off heat to several areas of the mall in an effort to reduce operating costs. A heating problem one day in 2000 resulted in a frozen pipe bursting in the mall and leaving the radio station in about two inches of standing water. According to a former employee, it was the second time that such an incident occurred.[citation needed]

Management then decided to relocate to a different building. WEDO cleared its equipment and furniture out of the mall weeks later and moved to its current location at a former bank location at 1985 Lincoln Way, where it occupies the second floor.

  WEDO in the News

In the spring of 1999, WEDO was the victim of a not-so-innocent and dangerous prank committed by local high school students at its transmitter facility in Forest Hills, as explained in the April 13th and 29th, 1999 issue archives of the Tribune-Review...

Police blame vandals for toppled radio tower...officials say cables cut; WEDO-AM is off air

Vandals cut the wires supporting a McKeesport radio station's transmitting tower, police said, allowing high winds to blow down the tower and knock the station off the air early Monday morning.

WEDO-AM may be dark for a week or more, said John James, vice president and general manager.

The damage to the 300-foot-tall tower along Foster Road in North Versailles Township was discovered early yesterday. Only a 30-foot section remains standing, James said.

The station, whose studios are in Midtown Plaza Mall in McKeesport, has an old daytime-only broadcasting license. WEDO had signed off on Sunday before 8 p.m.

North Versailles acting police Chief James Comunale said two of six wires supporting the tower were clearly cut. Though the tower was protected by a fence, the wires stretched deep into the woods, he said.

"I personally believe (the wires were) cut prior to this and the wind took it down last night," Comunale said. "We found no footprints and with all the rain we've had, we would have seen footprints."

Local youths frequent the trails in the woods nearby, he said.

James, of North Huntingdon Township, said he was looking for a replacement tower. If one can't be found quickly, he said, he'll look for a temporary broadcasting site, possibly on another station's tower.

Radio station is back after rebuilding tower

WEDO-AM, the McKeesport radio station knocked out of commission when its tower was felled about two weeks ago, is back on the air.

Station vice president and general manager John James said Wednesday a new tower has been constructed at the same North Versailles Township site as its previous one. WEDO, a 1,000-watt station, signed back onto the airwaves at 6 a.m. Tuesday.

James said he estimates the cost of the new tower at more than $60,000, which is expected to be covered by insurance.

"We're in the process of working with the insurance company right now," he reported.

The amount of lost advertising revenue has not been determined, but he expects the station's insurance to cover that as well.

"We lost a bundle," James said.

A 16-year-old White Oak resident has been charged with criminal mischief in the incident. North Versailles police said strong winds toppled the tower after guy wires holding it in place were cut on April 11.

  WEDO People

WEDO announcer Bill Korch has been with the station for more than 20 years. John James has managed the station since June 1982. James' predecessor, David Leiner took over for longtime manager John Longo in 1980. Today, Longo owns and operates WCNS, about 50 miles (80 km) east of Pittsburgh.

Also the legendary DJ Porky Chedwick is set to return to the Pittsburgh airwaves, hosting a weekly one hour oldies show starting in September, 2011.

  External links

Coordinates: 40°21′51″N 79°48′46″W / 40.36417°N 79.81278°W / 40.36417; -79.81278


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