AM Technical Profile: WCRL

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Variety Hits
Transmitter Location:
[map] [bird's eye] [street view] On 2nd Avenue East (AL-75) east of downtown, on the north side of the highway.
Power (ERP):
Day: 2.5 kW
Night: 64 watts
1 tower
Other Information:
0.5 mV/m Daytime Groundwave Service Contour from the FCC's Public Files
// W237DH 95.3 Cleveland, AL
// W234DI Douglas, AL
Owned by Our Town Radio, Inc. (Robbie McAlpine)
WCRL first began broadcasting in 1952 and was owned by the Blount County Broadcasting service under Luther Daniel Bentley, Jr from 1955 onwards.  The station has always transmitted from the same location and studio it has now.  The format in the early years is not known.  This station spawned an FM companion in 1968, putting WKLD on with a half-time simulcast of this station.

From at least the late 80's, possibly earlier, the station was known to have had an Adult Contemporary music format.  Around 1996 or 97, the station flipped to an Oldies music format, while the FM changed to a Country format, ending their long-time simulcast. 

Luther D. Bentley, III, took over operations of the station in 2002. The station may have had a short stint operating a Regional Mexican format in the late 90's or early 2000's.

Great South Wireless bought the FM companion to this station in 2008 to move it to the Huntsville market.  After it signed on from that market in 2009, Blount County was without a local FM signal until WCRL put an FM translator on the air in March 2009.  W237DH had previously broadcast in the Cleveland area to fill in signal gaps for WKLD's coverage in that area, but moved to Oneonta to be paired with this station. 

As a standalone, the station aired the satellite-fed "Timeless Favorites" Nostalgia music format until that service's demise on 14 February 2010.  The station aired a similar format off tape for a day until they launched a Soft Oldies and Country music mix starting the next day.  The format later morphed to all-Oldies, then to more of a Classic Hits approach in 2012.  That summer, ownership passed to Our Town Radio, Inc. 
Under Our Town, ownership passed from Mark Sims to Robbie McAlpine in 2015.
The station won a permit for a second translator in May 2018, licensed to Douglas, near the Snead community, on 94.7 MHz.  It signed on in June of 2018.

As of 2022, it appears the format has switched to a contemporary mix of songs from the 90's, 2000's and today as "Hits 95.3/94.7".