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Industry News Bits 2-7-17

TheBlast.FM celebrated its 10th anniversary of webcasting its Christian Rock format on January 1, 2017. Also on that date, The Blast Blender (Hot CHR) celebrated its third anniversary. That station has added a nightly EDM show (ElectroBlast) and a nightly hip hop and R & B show (BlastRap). Finally, and also on January 1st at Midnight Central Time, The Blast Ministries’ third station launched called “The Implosion”, which is Christian metal/hardcore/metalcore.

The Blast Ministries was founded by (and all 3 stations are programmed by) Colin “Cruz” Strombeck, a former FM Christian Rock and Hot CHR radio program director/air talent who has worked in the Houston, Minneapolis/St. Paul and Albuquerque markets, among others.

Family Life of Bath, NY overnight radio announcer, Justin Dix, is celebrating 25 years of service at the ministry this month. Justin has been heard on Family Life weekdays after Midnight, and every Sunday morning, for two and half decades. “I still remember my first phone conversation with Justin,” says Rick Snavely, president of Family Life.  “It must have been in the late-80s. Justin’s brother-in-law, Tim Zimmerman of the Kings Brass, kept saying I should contact Justin about a job, so one day I did. Justin was in Kansas City at the time and wasn’t interested in moving.  A few years later, he called me back wondering if a position might still be available. Turns out, God had been loosening his roots in the Midwest. During their call, Rick spoke of a vision: of building not just one station, but an expanded network of stations that would impact thousands of lives with the Gospel.  In 1992, Justin left Kansas City to join Family Life and help the team that would turn that vision into a reality.

“Family Life wouldn’t be the same without Justin,” says Snavely. “He’s a rare gift to our listeners and staff.  Not only has he encouraged many people over the air with his insights and commentary, he’s a wonderfully compassionate person who’s willing to be ‘inconvenienced’ at any point in his day by someone who stops into his studio needing prayer, wisdom, or encouragement. I believe we are stronger and more unified as a staff because he’s here.”

The “Now Newsletter” reports two Wisconsin-based not-for-profit Christian broadcasters are merging. That would be Jubilation Ministries Inc. of Plymouth merging into Appleton-based Evangel Ministries. Jubilation includes three licenses – contemporary Christian WSTM/Kiel (91.3/A), standards “1420 the Breeze” WJUB/Plymouth (500 watts day/62 watts at night) and translator W277BR/Sheboygan/103.3. Those will fall under Evangel which includes WEMI/Appleton (The Family) at 91.9.

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