AM Technical Profile: WQRX

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Contemporary Christian
Transmitter Location:
[map] [street view] Just outside of Valley Head on Old Highway 11 (Old Valley Head Road), on the east side of the road.  Across the creek, on Jeff Cook Road.
Power (ERP):
Day: 10 kW
Critical Hours: 4,700 watts
1 tower
Other Information:
0.5 mV/m Daytime Groundwave Service Contour from the FCC's Public Files
[Wikipedia] For the Good News Network that this station carries full time
Owned by Joy Christian Ministries
// W265CE Cedarburg, AL
// W259DK Fort Payne, AL / W257EB Valley Head, AL (CP)
This station, situated in the northeast Alabama community of Valley Head, was placed on the air in the early 80's by Jeff Cook, member of the country group Alabama.  Has had a country format for all of it's history [AFIAK - Zach] but recently swtichted to The Good News Network, a Christian religious network programmed in Spanish.  It also has carried some Spanish Christian programs from the KHCB Radio Network.  As of 2017 the station has switched to the Good News Network's English programming feed.
(This is one of the few stations in Alabama I ever saw actually promoting AM stereo in its advertising. I distinctly remember a mural on a side of a wall in either Valley Head or Fort Payne saying "870 Stereo" It wasn't until 2014 that a site contributor with an AM stereo radio was able to visit the area and verify they'd turned it off!) -- Zach
In March 2009 the station was passed from an investment group to "Augusta Radio Fellowship Institute", who owns the aforementioned Good News Network.  As of September 2009 the station switched from commercial to noncommercial operation.  The station also acquired a translator sometime afterwards in W211BW in Fort Payne, in the non-commercial band.
In late June 2011 the station's translator received a construction permit to make an upgrade.  The translator is currently on 90.1 MHz and has a permit to move to 100.9 MHz with a substantial increase in power.  The city of license is being moved to the nonexistent town of Cedarburg.  The signal will be highly directional and transmit from near Gaylesville towards Fort Payne, but will fall short of still covering the city.  A modified construction permit was later filed including a less directional pattern, which will now put Cedar Bluff in Cherokee County and the outskirts of Rome, Georgia, into the main coverage area.  That facility was reported as active to the FCC in the middle of August 2011.

The station received a construction permit for a new translator in Valley Head on 99.3 MHz in January of 2018.

The station went off the air due to transmitter troubles in the Spring of 2020.  In May 2020, the Augusta Radio Fellowship sold the station to Courington & Mastin, LLC for $10,000. Pat Courington has a stake in a few other northeast Alabama stations including WQSB in Albertville.

A Special Temporary Authority was granted in March 2021 to put the station back on with lower power (4 kW) during daylight hours while the new owners wait for a new transmitter to be installed.  That same month, the station converted back to commercial operation.  The STA was renewed as recently as August 2021.  In June 2021, the station applied to change the translator from Valley Head to a site in downtown Fort Payne, on 99.7 MHz. 

A license to cover for the translator was filed in June 2022.

In July 2022, the station was sold by Courington & Mastin, LLC for $15,000 to Joy Christian Ministries, who operates a few other Classic Gospel stations in Mississippi.  Joy Christian had previously operated stations in other parts of Alabama, but all them were sold or had the licenses turned in due to non-operation.  That same month, the translator that had only recently had a license to cover for operation from Fort Payne was filed to go back to Valley Head and back to the original 99.3 MHz allocation it was originally granted.  The FCC granted that change before the end of July.  In August, the deal with Joy Christian was finalized, and they also applied to change the station back to non-commercial operation.