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CAN YOU HEAR KXCI NOW?

If you live on Tucson's northwest side, Marana, Oro Valley and points beyond, and you've wondered what the fuss is about with the Old Pueblo's 30-year flirtation with community radio, now you too can enjoy the fun. KXCI 91.3 FM's upgraded transmitter is online, and it has dramatically expanded the station's listener range. Early indications are absolutely wonderful, with a strong clear signal in Marana, Oro Valley and Catalina, and stretching as far north on I-10 to the Pinal County line, said station GM Randy Peterson via email. The station has received a number of calls from people who are thrilled to finally enjoy community radio in their homes.

Some technical tweaks still need to be addressed, but for the most part the success of KXCI's massive fundraiser has allowed the station to implement the purpose of that drive. As such, the signal, weak and limited to specific portions of the city proper, has been boosted exponentially.

"The benefits in having this new geography is that it allows us to serve so many more potential listeners, not only in the context of getting great music to them but also in sharing the public service announcements, event sponsorships, our support for local music, interviews and live performances Peterson said. "Basically, everything that KXCI has done for 30 years we'll now be able to do for even more people. That's the benefit to the community. The benefit to KXCI is that there will be more people able to support the station, either directly with memberships (which account for 50% of our income) or through attending our concerts and patronizing our underwriting business sponsors."

And support remains crucial as KXCI hopes to embark on further improvement- related fundraising efforts. "The new transmitter is just the first part of our capital campaign, which has raised $531,000 toward our $750,000 goal," said Peterson in relation to what has been dubbed the Amplify Tucson fundraising effort, launched in conjunction with the station's 30th anniversary. "In the months ahead we'll focus our attention on further improvements to our historic building in Armory Park, improving sound quality by fixing the acoustics in our broadcast and performance studios, and making upgrades to our technology to prepare for the post-CD world that the music industry is moving to in the near future.

JOURNAL PARTS WAYS WITH ARROTTA

A two-sentence internal memo was all employees at Journal received announcing the end of the cluster's seven-year relationship with radio sales manager Frank Arrotta. "Effective immediately Frank Arrota (sic) is no longer with the company,"; said the internal memo. "We thank Frank for his service and wish him the best as he moves on."

Arrotta is already working on pursuing veins connected to a broadcast career that has spanned the better part of 30 years, highlighted in Tucson by his seven-year run with Journal and an 11-year stint at the Lotus Broadcasting. Journal owns four Tucson radio and two television stations. The electronic portion of the Milwaukee based organization was recently sold to E. W. Scripps Company. That deal, scheduled to be finalized by the first quarter of 2015, directly affects the Tucson operation.

KGUN PEGS MORNING BLEND DUO

Tina Jennings and Maria Parmigiani will handle hosting duties for KGUN TV 9' lifestyle/sponsor-driven weekday Morning Blend program. The hour-long show, which features a variety of segments, from entertainment updates to interviews with paid sponsors and charitable outlets, airs at 11 weekday mornings on KGUN, and in the well-established morning time frame of 1 pm on sister station KWBA TV 58.

Jennings makes the move after a stint that included anchoring experience for WBKO TV in Bowling Green, Kentucky. "I am thrilled to be back home in Arizona," said Jennings, who grew up in and around Phoenix. "I look forward to getting out into the community and exploring all the wonderful qualities that make Tucson a special place to call home."

Parmigiani makes the jump from WCWF-TV in Green Bay, Wisc. "We think their diverse experience and friendly personalities will add a wonderful dynamic to make the show an even greater success," said Vice-President and Journal Tucson Television GM Jim Arnold via the press release announcing the hires.

WILL THIRD TIME BE A CHARM FOR JACKSON?

KIIM FM 99.5 Program Director and afternoon drive time host Buzz Jackson is a finalist for CMA medium market country music personality of the year. Again. This is Jackson's third Country Music Awards nomination, and he has stiff competition from the likes of The Country Breakfast Club in Lakeland, Fla., the Electric Barnyard in Hartford and The Kat 103.7 FM morning show in Omaha. If he doesn't win this time, maybe it's time to look into a catchy name. Perhaps going by Buzz isn't quite enough. The CMAs are Nov. 5. Radio personality honors usually take place a day or two before the highly rated television awards show portion. Jackson is not without a statue for his KIIM based DJ endeavors. He does have an Academy of Country Music award under his belt. That occurred during his second such nomination for that honor.

TELEMUNDO ADDS ANOTHER ARIZONA NEWSCAST

Fresh off its push to enhance news coverage on a more regional and localized level, which took hold this summer, Telemundo will expand its news block an extra half hour beginning Nov. 3. The newscast will air weekdays at 4:30, and provide a localized news product to 14 Telemundo stations nationwide. Telemundo Tucson will receive news emanating from Phoenix, just as it has since the network's first news expansion plan too hold.

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