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Vashon Is Closer Than Ever To Having a Community Radio Station

Dan Schueler and Rick Wallace install the KVSH antenna as ground crew members Melodie Woods and Susan McCabe monitor the progress. Photos by John DeGroen.
Dan Schueler and Rick Wallace install the KVSH antenna as ground crew members Melodie Woods and Susan McCabe monitor the progress. Photos by John DeGroen.

Voice of Vashon has started construction on KVSH, building as funds come in from the Raise the Tower campaign.  You can watch dramatic aerial video of the antenna installation and support VoV’s efforts to bring community FM radio to Vashon by visiting VoiceOfVashon.org/RaiseTheTower.

It’ll take a couple more months of work to put 101.9FM on the air but VoV’s team of volunteers recently installed and successfully tested the 35’ mast and antenna on top of the District 19 water tank just south of town. Rik Reed, Dan Schueler and Rick Wallace climbed the 82’ high tank using special safety harnesses and were supported by a ground crew of a dozen volunteers.

VoV Vice President Rick Wallace said “We did a brief transmitter equipment test when the mast was up and our signal was heard loud and clear from one end of the Island to the other. Inevitably, there will be some shadowed areas on our Island of hills and valleys but this was a very good sign. We’ll do more extensive equipment testing of our coverage area in coming weeks as we continue construction.”

“After 14 years of work and dreams we’re going to be on the air – I always hoped so but now I really believe it’s going to happen,” said Jean Bosch, VoV’s President. “I was in tears listening to the broadcast test from my office north of town”.
An initiative by Brown Paper Tickets to promote community radio stations in the Puget Sound region features VoV and KVSH as leading the way by quickly moving ahead to build the Vashon Island station.

“In our efforts to bring Vashon an FM radio station, donations have poured in from hundreds of individual supporters,” said VoV Station Manager Susan McCabe. “In fact, Islanders donated over $3,000 at Strawberry Festival so we’re now at 93% of our $50,000 goal. We need the funds for additional equipment purchases, increasing our studio space at Sunrise Ridge to accommodate fresh radio programming, and to expand our Open Studio volunteer producer-training program. We’ve tripled our program volunteers since we announced we had finally gained FCC approval for Vashon’s own community radio station.”