CHSL-FM, Boom 92.7, Slave Lake
|Stingray Group Inc.
On September 3, CFOK Broadcasting Ltd. was granted a licence for a new AM station at Slave Lake on the frequency 1210 kHz, with a power of 1,000 watts day and night. The station would rebroadcast the programs of CFOK Westlock except for four hours between 07:00 and 11:00 Monday through Saturday when local programming would originate from the Slave Lake studios.
On November 1, CKWA 1210 began broadcasting.
Barry Dickson left CKWA to become manager of CILW Wainwright. Rod Schween became acting GM at CKWA.
On February 18, Len Novak, representing a company to be incorporated, received CRTC approval to acquire CKWA Slave Lake, CFOK Westlock, CFNL Fort Nelson and CKNL Fort St. John from CFOK Broadcasting Ltd. (CFOK and CKWA) and Western Communicon Ventures Ltd. (CFNL and CKNL). The Commission noted that the existing shareholders of CFOK Broadcasting Ltd., were Western Communicon Ventures Ltd. (50%) and L.J.N. Holdings Ltd. (50%). The existing shareholders of Western Communicon Ventures Ltd., were Marco Holdings Ltd. (52.7%) and Gee Dan Holdings Ltd. (47.3%). Len Novak held 100% of the common shares of L.J.N. Holdings Ltd. and Gene Daniel was the principal shareholder (80%) of Gee Dan Holdings Ltd. These transactions represented an intercorporate reorganization. One licensee company would operate these four radio stations, Len Novak (OBCI), and its shareholders would include the existing shareholders: Marco Holdings Ltd. (50%), Len Novak (25%) and Gene Daniel (25%). Len Novak’s company would become known as Nor-Net Communications Ltd.
Len Novak became managing director, overseeing the operations of CFOK, CKNL/CFNL, CHLW, CILW, CKWA and CJOI. He had been CFOK’s general manager.
On Febraury 22, approval was given for the transfer effective control of Nor-Net
Communications Ltd., licensee of CFOK Westlock, CKWA Slave Lake, CKBA Athabasca, CHLW St. Paul and its rebroadcaster CHLW-1 Grand Centre, CILW Wainwright, CKVH High Prairie, CKNL Fort St. John and CFNL Fort Nelson, through the transfer of all of the issued and outstanding shares of 362278 British Columbia Ltd., a company which owned 25% of Nor-Net, from Mr. Eugene Daniel to Marco Holdings Ltd. This intra-corporate transaction would result in an existing shareholder buying out another minority shareholder and thereby gaining effective control of the licensee company. Until now, Marco held 50% of Nor-Net. As a result of this transaction, the share structure would remain unchanged; however, Marco would effectively control Nor-Net by holding 75% of the voting shares, 50% directly and 25% indirectly through 362278 British Columbia Ltd.
When CKWA had its licence renewed August 26, it also received permission to change its program source from CFOK Westlock to CKDQ Drumheller, in addition to local programming.
On November 18, Okanagan Skeena Group Ltd. received approval to acquire Nornet Broadcasting Ltd. (including CKWA).
On October 7, approval was given for Okanagan Skeena Group Ltd. to effect an intra-corporate reorganization. OKS would transfer the assets of its television and radio stations in British Columbia and Alberta to 3537412 Canada Ltd., one of its wholly-owned subsidiaries.
On October 18, approval was granted for the transfer of ownership and control of Okanagan Skeena Group Ltd. through the transfer of all of its issued and outstanding shares to Telemedia Radio Inc. a wholly-owned subsidiary of Telemedia Communications Inc. Initially, Okanagan had applied for the transfer of its shares to TCI Acquisition Corporation. However, on August 31, by letter of authority, the CRTC approved the merger of Okanagan with TCI. The resulting company kept Okanagan’s name. Also, Telemedia advised the Commission that, effective September 1, 3581713 Canada Inc. amalgamated with Telemedia Radio. As a result of these mergers, Telemedia Radio was now the company that acquired the shares of Okanagan.
On April 19, the CRTC approved the sale of a number of radio and television stations in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia by Telemedia Radio Inc. and Telemedia Radio (West) Inc. to Standard Radio Inc. Standard was then allowed to sell certain of these stations to Rogers Broadcasting Ltd. and 3937844 Canada Inc. (subsidary of Newcap Inc.). Newcap acquired 15 Alberta radio stations and related transmitters (Newcap 76.34%, Standard 23.66%). CKWA was one of the 15 stations that would now be owned by Newcap.
On November 23, CKWA Slave Lake was given approval to convert to the FM band. The new station would operate at 92.7 MHz with an effective radiated power of 5,700 watts. Antenna height would be 315.4 metres from a Telus Communications tower. The existing country fromat would transfer from AM to FM. The existing AM station received 20 hours per day from the Cat Country network. The new FM would take 12 hours from the network and would be local from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays.
On September 8 at 7:15 a.m., CKWA-AM became CHSL-FM “The Fox 92.7 FM CHSL”. The country format was replaced by classic hits.
CKWA-AM left the air the spring. It may have been on the air for about two months longer than the authorized FM simulcast period.
In May, 92.7 The FOX became 92.7 LAKE-FM. The format and personalities remained the same but according to Newcap, the ID better reflected local significance.
On May 15, the studio and offices were destroyed by a wild fire. At first it was thought the transmitter had also been destroyed but the following day, engineers found that it was still operational. On the morning of May 16, The Eagle Edson was simulcasting on www.lakefm.ca with information for Slave Lake residents. Newcap engineers were allowed to access the transmitter site and get a streaming audio feed from Edson set-up. Lake-FM started to broadcast in Slave Lake from Edson within 48 hours of the station being destroyed. On May 30, Lake FM started broadcasting out of a new studio above a video store on Main Street in Slave Lake. CHSL changed its slogan to “The Spirit of Slave Lake” at this time.
On May 15, 2011 at 5:50 p.m. on the advice of SRD officials, 92.7 LAKE-FM on-air staff evacuated the station after keeping residents informed throughout the weekend about the wildfires in the Slave Lake area. Within 30 minutes the station was on fire. 48 hours later, Newcap engineers were able to restore audio to the transmitter via an internet link from a studio location in Edson. LAKE-FM staff broadcast to Slave Lake via Edson for 2 weeks following the fire. A temporary studio was built in Slave Lake and since May 30th of last year CHSL operated from that location. At that time, the station changed its slogan to “The Spirit of Slave Lake” as a reflection of the resiliency of the people of the region.
Construction of a new building began last fall. At 3:00 a.m., May 31, 2012, engineers made the flip and LAKE-FM began broadcasting from its new facility. The new studios were located right next to where the old station once stood. The station had the latest in AXIA equipment, Alberta’s Emergency Alert System, production studio, newsroom, sales offices and kitchen area. LAKE-FM had a local staff of six and provided live and local programming 7 days a week.
On August 8, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CHSL-FM until August 31, 2013.
Lake FM Morning host Paul Allen left for Victoria to do fill-in work at 107.3 Kool FM.
On May 8 the CRTC approved the application by Newcap Inc. to amend the licence for CHSL-FM Slave Lake in order to operate an FM transmitter in Wabasca. The new transmitter would operate at 94.3 MHz (channel 232A) with an average effective radiated power of 6,000 watts (non-directional antenna with an effective height of antenna above average terrain of 61.5 metres). The new transmitter would rebroadcast the programming of CHSL-FM in Wabasca. Newcap stated that the addition of the transmitter would bring a clear and concise radio signal to the community of Wabasca.
In July, CHSL rebranded from Lake FM to Boom 92.7.
On October 23, the CRTC approved an application by Newfoundland Capital Corporation Limited, on behalf of Newcap Inc. and its licensed broadcasting subsidiaries, for authorization to effect a change in the ownership and effective control of various radio and television broadcasting undertakings in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador, so that effective control of the undertakings would be exercised by Eric Boyko (Stingray Digital Group Inc.). Stingray took ownership of the stations just a few days later.
In January, Stingray began syndicating the Real Country 95.5 Red Deer morning show across its Real Country and boom-branded radio stations in rural Alberta, leading to the elimination of 14 on-air positions. Boom 92.7 was among the stations to add the show.
The story continues elsewhere…
Effective September 1st 2019, we will only be adding new material to these station histories in exceptional circumstances. Our intent to chronicle the early days of these radio and television stations has been achieved, and many new sources and technologies, from the CRTC website to Wikipedia, and others, are now regularly providing new information in these areas.