FM Technical Profile: WHWY
- Station Name:
- Highway 98
view] Between Memorial Parkway SW and Robinwood Drive SW, just
south and off of Hollywood Boulevard NW. Co-located with WPSM, WNCV
- Power (ERP):
- 100 kW.
- Antenna HAAT:
- 482 feet
- 60 dBu protected
map, from the FCC.
PS-If you change stations, I'll put your "check
engine" light on!
Are Just More Fun
Most Fun On The Emerald Coast!
Text-Highway 98 Country We Are Just More Fun!
- AUX: 12 kW @
342 feet. 60 dBu protected
map, from the FCC.
- How's the
- Primarily an
Okaloosa County station, it reaches the eastern half of Pensacola
and Gulf Breeze with a decent signal. Strong in Niceville and
Crestview, and listenable in De Funiak Springs.
Image showing the RDS text display of an Insignia HD portable
showing the PI (call letters) and Radio Text.
Image showing the RDS text display of a Radio Shack DX-398 portable,
showing the PS (station name) field.
Street View imagery of the Apex cluster's Fort Walton Beach studios,
at Perry and Ferry and Chestnut.
- This station
came on the air in 1951 as WCTA-FM (CovingTon Andalusia), companion
of WCTA-AM. In the 60's it became WNBX with a MOR/easy listening
type format. In the late 60's or early 70's, it became WCTA-FM
again, simulcasting the AM station. In 1976 WCTA-AM was sold, and
the FM spun off to a completely automated adult contemporary format
with WQHQ as the new call sign. In the mid 80's the station was
simulcasting their AM counterpart with a CHR format, and later as a
calls changed to WWSF on January 1st, 1989 as "The Surf"
with an oldies format. The station was trying to make it in the
growing Fort Walton Beach and Pensacola areas. Eventually they
achieved several years of dominant Arbitrons until more localized
competition slowed the momentum. As
"The Surf", they had a neat slogan: "98 Surf FM reaches the
beaches, rocks the docks and shakes the lakes!"
In October 1994 the station became WXCR, classic rock; exactly one
year later it was back to WWSF "The Surf" (this time with 70's and
80's oldies). Eventually went all-sports and news, with callsign
WTKE (the moniker was "the TicKEt") taking effect March 1999.
- It is
likely the first 100,000 watt FM sports talk station. In fact, it
may have been the ONLY 100 kW FM sports station for years before the
format began migrating to FM in major markets.
the late 80's the station wanted to move south to get into the
growing Ft. Walton Beach/Destin/Pensacola market, but at the time
FCC rules didn't allow a station to change it's city of license. So,
they moved the transmitter site as far south as they could while
still providing a city-grade signal to Andalusia. This allowed them
to put a signal into Ft. Walton Beach and Pensacola, but it still
wasn't quite strong enough to be a major competitor. This was
a Class C1 station covering a whole lot of nothing! In later years
the FCC relaxed their rules regarding changes and moves, and the
station was able to re-license itself to Holt, FL. The FCC's new
rules give preference to applications giving a city or town its
first station, and it doesn't matter where that station is trying to
serve. So while the tiny community of Holt, just off I-10 in
Okaloosa County didn't have a station licensed to it, it is
obviously well within the coverage area of several AM and FM
stations in south Alabama and the Pensacola/Ft. Walton Beach market
area. This allowed the owners to actually put the transmitter site
right in downtown Ft. Walton Beach, eliminating any coverage issues
there, in growing Destin or in Pensacola.
- Ownership of this
station was contentious in the 2000's. Going back to the
mid-90's this station was part of the Clear Channel empire. They
sold it to Star Broadcasting (Ron Hale) in 2003. Star
Broadcasting turned around and sold the station just a few months
later to Qantum of Fort Walton Beach. But then Star tried to
also sell it to Cumulus for cash plus ownership of FM 105.5 in Fort
Walton Beach. This led to lawsuits, which in turn led to Cumulus
dropping out and leaving ownership to Qantum.
- In 2009 a station
show host by the name of Scott McKinney caused controversy when he
plead guilty to multiple charges of fraud stemming from a scheme to
get investors to fund his Southern Sports Tonight radio
program. He was convicted in February 2009 and will serve time
for his deeds.
call sign was WRKN briefly in 2009; this call sign has been on at
least three Fort Walton Beach area stations at one point or
another. In January 2010 the station flipped from sports talk
to country, as Highway 98 with the WHWY call sign. The
sports moved to co-owned FM 100.3 and took the WTKE-FM calls
December 2011 all the Qantum stations in the FWB market were sold to
In late June 2016 it was announced that the South Carolina-based
Community Broadcasters, LLC, acquired the entire Apex Fort Walton
radio ground for an undisclosed sum.