CKKQ-FM, 100.3 The Q, Victoria
|Jim Pattison Broadcast Group
|OK Radio Group Ltd.
|re-broadcaster at Sooke
In April Victoria Communications Ltd. was awarded a licence for a new Rock FM station in Victoria, over two local operators.
Before signing on the air, CKKQ-FM applied to the CRTC for a frequency change from 100.3 MHz to 92.1 MHz, as well as a change of transmitter site and a reduction in power. The changes were sought because of interference problems caused by the location of the planned transmitter site. In 1983 the CBC had applied for the same frequency and transmitter site but dropped the plan because of budget restraints. A possible disagreement between the CBC and CKKQ was settled when CKKQ-FM withdrew its request for a frequency change in order that the CBC could continue its plans to apply for an FM transmitter in Victoria. The CRTC then approved CKKQ’s request for a power reduction and change of antenna site.
CKKQ-FM “The Q” signed on December 12, with an average effective radiated power of 44,000 watts from a transmitter site at Mount Work approximately 12 kilometres northwest of central Victoria.
Personalities included Ed Bain, Mark Kriski, who moved to KTLA-TV Los Angeles, Cliff Lequesne, Ross McIntyre, and Dave Farough, who moved to CFNY FM 102.1 “The Edge” in Toronto.
On September 5th, the CRTC approved application to use a Subsidiary Communications Multiplex Operation (SCMO) channel to carry data services on the 67 kHz subcarrier channel and to distribute background music on the 92 kHz subcarrier channel. Although this application was approved, SCMO was never implemented.
Victoria Communications Ltd. was always owned, and part of OK Radio Group Ltd. However, in 1994 all properties came under the corporate heading of OK Radio. Those included Alberta stations CKER Edmonton, CFGP Grand Prairie and CJOK and CKYX, both in Fort McMurray.
On April 25th application was made to move the transmitter to Malahat Ridge north of Victoria and increase the average effective radiated power from 44,000 to 47,600 watts (100,000 watts peak). Upon approval, OK Radio Group signed on CKKQ-FM from the new transmitter site. Coverage improved immensely and included Nanaimo, the Lower Mainland and south down Puget Sound to Seattle, WA. CKDA, AM 1200 Victoria was purchased in September and, with rebuilt facilities, became CKXM Country.
OK Radio Group Ltd. applied to the CRTC to add a rebroadcast transmitter at Sooke, west of Victoria, operating on frequency 94.7 MHz with an average effective radiated power of 38 watts (64 watts peak) to fill in reception in that area caused by terrain shielding.
OK Radio Group’s Victoria stations, 100.3 The Q, and CKXM finished construction of new studios. Some neighbours in the commercial/residential neighbourhood claim they were surprised to see the antenna tower, apparently not realizing that was part of having a radio station next door. OK owner Stu Morton was quoted as saying there should be no surprises, since the city granted a permit for the tower last fall. He said he’d be willing to paint the tower if it would make his new neighbours happy. The move to the top floor of 2750 Quadra Street took place in May.
Former BC broadcaster Cheryl Cox lost her battle with breast cancer at 36. She was among the original on-air staff at 100.3 The Q when it signed on in 1987.
Al Ford became music director and Kerry Campbell was the new promotion director. Lexine Stephens (formerly of SUN-FM Kelowna) became mid-day announcer.
Kerry Campbell moved from mid-day host to promotions.
On February 17th the CRTC approved the Sooke transmitter, which subsequently went on the air in May as CKKQ-FM-1. Also in May, sister station CKXM AM 1200 was moved to FM 91.3, sharing transmitter facilities at the Malahat site.
Program director Dave Farough left to become PD at CFNY-FM in Toronto.
100.3 The Q and X91.3 released five staffers, including the country station’s morning team.
On June 21, 2001 sister station CKXM-FM country, changed call letters to CJZN-FM and format to Modern Rock.
Rick Everett, The Q’s afternoon host, added program director duties.
On March 19, CKKQ was authorized to operate a transitional digital radio undertaking to serve Victoria. The transmitter would be located at Malahat Ridge and would employ the EUREKA-147 digital audio broadcasting system. CKKQ proposed to operate the transmitter using DRU frequency 1,472.000 MHz
(DRB channel 12) with an effective isotropic radiated power of 2,000 watts.
On April 13, the CRTC extended the deadline to begin operation of its previously approved digital radio operation to August 31, 2006. OK Radio had requested an extension to March 19, 2007 citing the uncertainty of the status of digital broadcasting in Canada, but the Commission noted that the date proposed would extend beyond the expiry of the licence in question.
On May 9, the Edmonton-based OK Radio Group announced the sale of its two Victoria stations, CKKQ-FM and CJZN-FM to Vancouver-based Jim Pattison Broadcast Group. COO of OK Radio, Stu Morton was quoted as saying, “The management, programming and character of the stations will continue. [Pattison] stations run much the same way we do.” On November 24, the CRTC approved the ownership change, along with the respective transmitters in nearby Sooke, with the applicants specifying the value of the transaction at $15.75 million. The Commission also noted the purchase included the not-yet-launched transitional digital radio undertakings associated with the stations.
Sara Parker, Program Director at 100.3 The Q! and recipient of CMW’s Young Broadcaster of the Year award in March, left the station at the end of June to join Harvard Broadcasting’s yet to be launched station in Edmonton.
Brian Blackburn was no longer General Sales Manager at the Jim Pattison Broadcast Group radio stations in Victoria. In the interim, Bruce Davis, VP of Sales for JPBG and General Manager of the Kelowna radio properties, stepped into the role and was in Victoria a few days each week.
Mike Jean was promoted to Retail Sales Manager at The Q/The Zone. He had been a Senior Marketing Consultant.
Mike Evenson, formerly the Assistant Music Director/morning show producer at 100.3 The Q joined NL Broadcasting as its afternoon host on 97.5 The River.
In January, Kirk Mason concluded a 50-year broadcast career. He had been news director at 100.3 The Q! for 28 years. Mason started out in broadcasting at CFTJ Galt in 1967.
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.