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WWGN
City of license Chicago, Illinois
Broadcast Chicagoland / Northern Illinois
Branding Newsradio 780 WWGN
Slogan "The All-News Station of Chicago"
Frequency 780 kHz
First air date June 1, 1926
Format All-News
Power 50,000 Watts
Class A (clear-channel)
Callsign meaning station named after the real life WGN-AM, but with an added W
Sister stations(s) WWGN-TV 9
Owner WMFL Corporation
(WMFL Radio)
Sister Stations WWGN-TV 9

WWGN (780 AM) is a radio station in Chicago, Illinois, USA. It's owned by WMFL Corporation, which also owns WWGN-TV, the Chicago Herald newspaper & Chicagoland News 6 (CLN6). WWGN's transmitter is located @ the top of Willis Tower in Downtown Chicago, along w/ WWGN-TV's transmitter. The station has been an All-news radio station since 1969 & is the flagship station of the Chicago Cubs, Chicago Bulls, Chicago Blackhawks, Northwestern University football & men's basketball & was the longtime flagship station of Paul Harvey until his death on February 28, 2009.

WWGN is a high-powered clear-channel AM station (50,000 watts), which during nighttime hours is often audible over much of the USA, parts of Canada & sometimes as far away as Australia & South America. The station also has a 24/7 Internet stream on it's website, which carries the station's broadcast programming except for commercial breaks, Cubs, Bulls & Blackhawks games, when the All-News format is aired instead.

WWGN is responsible for activation of the Chicagoland Emergency Alert System when hazardous weather alerts, disaster area declarations & child abductions are issued

HistoryEdit

WWGN started Broadcasting on June 1st, 1926. Early programming from those days was noted for it's creativity & innovation. It included LIVE music, political debates, comedy routines & some of radio's 1st broadcasts of sporting events, including the Indianapolis 500 automobile race & a LIVE broadcast of the 1925 Scopes Trial from Dayton, Tennessee. In 1926, WWGN broadcasted Sam & Henry, a daily serial with comic elements created & performed by Freeman Gosden & Charles Correll. After a dispute with the station in 1927, Gosden & Correll took the program's concept & announcer Bill Hay across town to WCHI & created the 1st syndicated radio show in history, Amos 'n' Andy.

In October 1958, WWGN became the 1st radio station in Chicago to broadcast helicopter traffic reports featuring Chicago Police Officer Leonard Baldy.

Over many decades, WWGN was a "full service" radio station. The station played small amounts of music during mornings & afternoons, moderate amounts of music on weekends during the day, had midday & evening talk shows & sports among other features. The station's music was easy listening/MOR-based until 1969, when the all-news format on WWGN began.

Some former well-known personalities on the station include longtime morning hosts Wally Phillips, Bob Collins & Spike O'Dell, Paul Harvey & Roy Leonard. Orion Samuelson has been the station's farm reporter since 1960

Recent eventsEdit

WWGN has been using "The All-News Station of Chicago" slogan since 1995, which is still being used today.

On June 1st 2008, the station announced a 3-year deal making WWGN Radio "The Voice of the Chicago Blackhawks", continuing to bring NHL hockey to the station since 1995 & will continue through the 2010-2011 season. On April 18th 2011, WWGN Radio signed a multi-long contract (15 years) to keep the Chicago Blackhawks on Newsradio 780 WWGN till the 2025-2026 season

In October 2008, after a 10-year partnership with The Weather Channel to provide the station's weather forecasts, the station began to air forecasts prepared by members of WWGN-TV's SkyTracker 9 HD weather staff.

  • NOTE: LIVE sports (Cubs baseball, Bulls basketball, Blackhawks hockey, Northwestern football/basketball) may preempt WWGN's all-news format

External linksEdit

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