CKMW-FM, Country 88.9, Winkler/Morden

Golden West Broadcasting Ltd.

CKMW-FM201388.9100,000Golden West Broadcasting Ltd.
CKMW-AM1987157010,000Golden West Broadcasting Ltd.
CISV-AM1986157010,000Sun Valley Radio Ltd.
CISV-AM1980153010,000/1,000Sun Valley Radio Ltd.


On October 15, Sun Valley Radio Inc. received approval to operate a new AM station at Winkler-Morden. The station would broadcast on frequency 1530 kHz and operate with a power of 10,000 watts daytime and 1,000 watts at night. Henry F. Wiebe, Mayor of Winkler, was one of the shareholders in Sun Valley. The new station was to provide a high degree of local news and information and went on the air in1980.


CISV began broadcasting full time on June 12th. The “SV” in the call letters: Sun Valley.


On February 15, the CRTC renewed CISV’s licence until September 30, 1989.


On June 20, the CRTC approved the transfer of effective control of Sun Valley Radio Inc., through the transfer of a majority of common voting shares from the existing shareholders to Triple E. Canada Ltd. (36.114%) and Phillipp R. Ens Ltd. (13.893%) and an accompanying issuance of 15,214 common voting shares and 463,330 non-voting preferred shares from the licencee’s treasury. As a result of these transactions, Philipp R. Ens indirectly acquired effective control of Sun Valley Radio Inc. by virtue of the fact that he effectively controlled both Philipp R. Ens Ltd. and Triple E. Canada Ltd. which together represented over 50% of the licensee’s voting stock.  


Allan Hiebert became news director, replacing Eric Turner who moved to Winnipeg.


On January 20, CISV was granted a change of frequency, from 1530 kHz to 1570 kHz and an increase in night-time power from 1,000 to 10,000 watts. Daytime power would remain at 10,000 watts.

On September 25, the sale of CISV by Sun Valley Radio Inc. to Golden West Broadcasting Ltd. was approved. CISV had experienced heavy financial losses since it went on the air in 1980 and had continued to operate only through significant infusions of funds from Sun Valley’s shareholders, particularly Triple E Canada Ltd. A variety of measures, including a reduction in service, had been tried to improve the station’s financial position but none had succeeded. Efforts to sell the station had failed because no potential buyer could see the station as a viable free standing entity or operation. Recognizing that CISV could not survive as a stand-alone operation, Golden West indicated that it would apply economies of scale in the areas of engineering, accounting, production, programming, national sales and overall management to make CISV viable. It also promised continued support of local talent and the maintenance of adequate staff levels, as well as the provision of training and development opportunities to improve the overall quality of programming.  

With respect to the common ownership concern, Golden West noted that the communities in question had distinct identities despite their proximity and that CISV had developed an audience that was quite different from that of CFAM Altona. Golden West further submitted that the stations’ services were complementary, maintaining diversity of service in the area by providing listening alternatives. In this regard, it contrasted CISV’s country format with CFAM’s more eclectic music programming and indicated that, while some news-gathering resources would be shared, a distinct local news service would be maintained in each community. 


CISV was replaced by CKMW, under the ownership of Elmer Hildebrand’s Golden West Broadcasting. Over 500 area residents toured the station’s new facilities on opening day. The new studios and offices were in the Main Plaza. The official opening was held April 14.


Golden West launched FM station CJEL at Winkler.


In October, CKMW-AM and CJEL-FM moved to new studios and offices at 277 1st Street in Winkler.


On March 20, Golden West’s application for a new FM station at Winkler/Morden was denied. If approved, it would have operated on 103.7 MHz with effective radiated power of 27,000 watts. It would have offered a country music format to compete with a U.S. country music radio service originating from North Dakota.


On August 31, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CKMW until March 31, 2012.


On March 20, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CKMW to August 31, 2012.

On July 16, the CRTC approved the application by Golden West Broadcasting Ltd. for a licence to operate a new English-language commercial FM radio programming undertaking in Winkler, to replace its AM station CKMW. The new station would operate at 103.7 MHz (channel 279C1) with an average effective radiated power (ERP) of 61,100 watts (maximum ERP of 100,000 watts with an effective height of antenna above average terrain of 51.7 metres). 

Golden West indicated that the new station would maintain CKMW’s Country music format, targeting adults 25 to 64 years of age, and would broadcast 126 hours of programming per broadcast week. It further indicated that the new station’s programming would include over two hours of pure news each broadcast week, of which 90% would be local content focusing on stories in Winkler and the surrounding areas. As part of its local programming, the new station would provide listeners with coverage of the local city council, school boards, local police reports, stories of local infrastructure, economic activity, sporting and entertainment events, and community growth. Golden West also indicated that the new station would maintain its current schedule of weekly religious programs. The licence would expire August 31, 2018.

On August 28, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence of CKMW to December 31, 2012. On December 21, the licence was renewed to August 31, 2019.


On January 8, the CRTC approved the application by Golden West Broadcasting Ltd. to change the authorized contours of CKMW-FM by changing its frequency from 103.7 (channel 279C1) to 88.9 MHz (channel 205C1), increasing the average effective radiated power from 61,000 to 100,000 watts (maximum ERP remains at 100,000 watts) and changing from a directional to a non-directional antenna. The applicant indicated that the frequency change would allow it to transmit the signals of both CKMW-FM and its other station CJEL-FM using a common non-directional antenna, which would be more cost effective.

CKMW-FM 88.9 was on-air testing in May. When the tests were completed, it would replace CKMW 1570.

CKMW-FM officially replaced CKMW-AM on June 12.

On August 31 at 10:00 a.m., 1570 CKMW left the air for good with programming continuing on 88.9 MHz FM.

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.

Contact this station