“(The station) does something for us that we’ve never been able to do," station owner Will Tieman said. "It gives us another great nighttime signal for the community. It’s another avenue to do more things with, and we’re feeling pretty good about it.”
WMPA officially began broadcasting at noon Tuesday.
While the country music format will be the primary focus, the new station will also host Muskegon Catholic football and basketball games, as well as NASCAR races and events.
“This station is really defined by music and events that fit the community,” said Tieman, who also owns WGHN (92.1 FM and 1370 AM) in Grand Haven.
Tieman said after giving thought to format choices for the new station, the country and NASCAR format was chosen because it fits the age 25 and older demographic of the community, and it didn’t overlap the formats of his other two stations.
Tieman recently spent $100,000 in a federal government frequency bidding process to acquire the rights to put 93.1 FM on the air, with the city of license as Ferrysburg.
“Unfortunately, it didn’t go as quickly as we wanted,” he said of the launch process.
With high school football kicking off this week, Tieman said the station had to launch. He said he considers Tuesday’s sign-on as a "soft" launch, with little fanfare.
Station Manager Eric Kaelin said the staff has been busy preparing the station for going on the air. The broadcast originates from the same 1 S. Harbor Ave. location as WGHN.
The new station operates at 6 kilowatts — "mirroring" the signal of WGHN-FM, which doubled its power recently from 3 kilowatts.
To read more of this story, see Saturday’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.