In 2015, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting pulled its support for Moab’s public radio station, and KZMU has now reached the two-year mark of independence, relying solely on the community for funding.
This is KZMU’s 25th anniversary year, and the upcoming Fall Radiothon is the last chance to claim your T-shirt, pint glass and hat commemorating a quarter-century of local, independent, grassroots, noncommercial, community-powered radio.
Fall Radiothon runs from Friday, Oct. 13, through Saturday, Oct. 21, this year, and you’ll find the bright orange KZMU tent at City Market as usual, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. – except on Saturday, Oct. 14, when the station will pitch its tent at the Red Rock Arts Festival – a street fair in front of the Moab Arts and Recreation Center (MARC) – from noon to 8 p.m.
The station’s Radiothon goal is $35,000 – an amount that station employees said they must raise to stay in the black. Listeners can contribute a premium, sponsor a day of programming, or simply make a tax-deductible contribution – $35 gets you a KZMU membership, which gives them discounts to KZMU events and other special perks.
The City of Moab declared April 2 of this year KZMU Day, and the station celebrated with a party in the side yard of the MARC, attended by a crowd of well-wishers. Rogue Assets performed, and people mingled and enjoyed birthday cake and beverages, listening as four ex-managers of the station spoke.
One of them was “the guy next door,” Jeff Flanders, who died in June. Although he retired three years ago, Flanders’ stamp can still be felt at Moab Community Radio, which he led for 16 years. Among his accomplishments: the installation of KZMU’s solar array, which provides more than 90 percent of the station’s electricity needs; and the long-running Word of the Day, a collaboration with HMK Elementary and the Moab Charter School. A New Orleans-style funeral march, led by the Fiery Furnace Marching Band, was held in his honor, as well as a memorial event at the Grand Center.
As a reflection of the Moab community, KZMU’s history is full of comings and goings. DJ Kid Rocket appeared on the KZMU airwaves for the first time when Music Director Serah Mead returned from maternity leave in May. In her short tenure at the station, DJ Kid Rocket has been fascinated by live music, especially enjoying the classical violin stylings of Moab Music Festival artist Charles Yang. Like other young people, she’ll be able to take advantage of KZMU’s programs for kids: Word of the Day, DJ training and Youth Rock Camp. These are the voices of the future, and KZMU General Manager Marty Durlin said the station wants to make sure Moab Community Radio is here to provide a platform for free expression.
For more information, contact Marty Durlin at 435-259-8824, or firstname.lastname@example.org.