Uncertain Fate For Delmarva Public Radio

Oct 3, 2012

This report courtesy WMDT 47 News.

Link to video

SALISBURY, Md. - Delmarva Public Radio can be heard pretty much anywhere on the shore, but it looks like there will be some changes coming to the 25 year-old station.

DPR will be loosing its home of a quarter century on Salisbury University's campus to make way for the new Academic Commons building.  Caruthers Hall, the building where the station is currently housed, will be demolished in the summer of 2013 to make way for the new library and study center. 

This leaves the station with a few options.  DPR worked with Public Radio Capital, a non-profit consulting service, to come up with a number of possible future steps, and according to Mike Dunn, Interim General Manager at DPR, 

"The one that's been recommended by the consultant calls for a change of format for one of our 2 stations from news talk to AAA format.  And on the other station, it's calling for a classical music source to be bought from the outside."

As of now, DPR has WSDL NPR News Talk 90.7 and WSCL Classical 89.5, both of which are locally programmed.

Some listeners fear the shift from local to national or regional programming will take away from the charm of the station.  

Kara Dahl Russell, the classical music host, agrees there's something special about local public radio saying,

"There's definitely a big quality difference between the satellite programming, which may be fine" and "there's no room for audience feedback in that."

Now, the Salisbury University Foundation and Delmarva Public Radio want to get listeners' feedback on what they would like to see in the station's future.  An open meeting will be held Tuesday, October 16th at 6:30pm in the Wicomico Room of the Guerrieri University Center at Salisbury University.

If you are unable to attend the meeting but would still like to voice your thoughts, send an email to sufoundation@salisbury.edu.

Dunn is very interested to hear what the audience thinks, saying "good bad or indifferent, it's all a part of the process, evaluating how to move forward.  I think it's a great idea and we're all looking forward to hearing from the public."

The full report from Public Radio Capital is available at www.salisbury.edu/foundation