| The Southern Ontario/WNY Radio-TV Forum

You are not logged in. Would you like to login or register?

June 15, 2020 11:46 am  #1

The Classic Top 40 Station Listeners Could Swim Into

If you'd ever been to Myrtle Beach, S.C. or Florida on vacation in the 60s or 70s, you probably heard it. If not, you may have heard OF it. It was the home to the legendary Greaseman and a powerful 50,000 watt Top 40 station at 690 on the AM dial.

Its name was WAPE in Jacksonville, Florida and it exploited the hell out of the "APE" in its call letters. (You can imagine how excited the promo department was when the Monkees appeared!)

This terrific article on the station (and a documentary being made about it) contains these stunning details about a feature of the station's actual building that I can't imagine anyone trying today. Or even back then, for that matter. 

"The station's building in Orange Park (now site of an assisted-living center) had a swimming pool, complete with high and low dive, that young visitors were welcome to come and use. It was both an outside and an inside pool — you could swim under and into the building.

"Once in, you could see the DJs at work at the controls. You could ask for requests, for dedications, for mentions on the air. More often than not, they complied."

Gives a whole new meaning to the term air "waves." Imagine being able to take a tour of the place from its own swimming pool. Now THAT'S what I call listener involvement! I only wonder about the liability if some kid ever drowned. Fortunately, it never happened. 

If you're curious about a look back at a legendary radio station from way down south, you can read it here.(The pic below is from my T-shirt collection.)