Central Pennsylvania Area AM Stations

850 WKGE Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Owner: Birach Broadcasting Corporation
Format: Silent

Signed on in 1922 and had homes on many different frequencies before moving to AM 1400 and becoming WJAC-AM. In 1963, the station moved to 850 with a significant power increase, but has a complex directional antenna to protect adjacents.  When Forever Broadcasting (Keymarket) took over the signal, they moved their WNTJ calls and programming to 850 and simulcast WNTW from Somerset. When Forever divested of 850 and several other stations, that all moved back to 1490. Birach Broadcasting bought the station in 2007 and simulcasts WWGE (1400) from Loretto… the same 1400 that WJAC moved to 850 from many years back. The simulcast agreement was made with Pennsylvania Radiowerks who owns WWGE. In 2012, citing struggles to bring in revenue, Birach Broadcasting shut down station operations and put the station on the market.

950 DWNCC Barnesboro, Pennsylvania
Last Owner: Vernal Enterprises, Inc.
Last Format: Full-service

WNCC was first on the air in 1950 with a full-service format. It was operated from the Barnesboro Americal Legion and was owned by North Cambria Broadcasters, Inc. In 1960 it was sold to WNCC, Inc. And then sold to Bland Group, Inc. in 1975. It was Bland (headed by successful radio man, William Bland) who applied for an FM station in the late-1980s at 94.3 (WRHB) but the station was put in receivership before the FM could become a reality as the region’s coal business was drying up. WNCC was sold to Eagle Broadcasting from Johnstown in 1990 when it also acquired two other signals – WRDD and WCRO – in the region. The three became a “trimulcast” of WCRO and the programming consisted mainly of time-brokered religious programs. The stations were sold to Vernal Enterprises in 1996 and they re-sold WCRO. WNCC’s operations went back to Barnesboro as did WRDD and together they simulcast a full-service format. Eventually WHPA-FM joined the fold with its Classic Hits format. WNCC went silent for a long time and Vernal Enterprises surrendered the license on April 22, 2014.

970 WBLF Bellefonte, Pennsylvania
Owner: Magnum Broadcasting
Format: News/Talk

WBLF was brought to life in 1958 on 1330 AM as one of the original 9 stations in the Allegheny Mountain Network headed by Cary Simpson. Prior to 2005, the station simulcast WRSC-FM from State College. But that changed when Dame Broadcasting sold the station to 2510 Licenses, LLC. In that same year, Magnum Broadcasting bought the station when it actually became a competitor with the station it was simulcasting. Local programming was complimented by various syndicated talk ranging from Rush Limbaugh to Tom Hartmann. Despite changes in certain programs over the last few years, WBLF continues to air programs from “both sides of the aisle”.

990 WNTW Somerset, Pennsylvania
Owner: Forever Broadcasting, LLC
Format: Talk

WVSC signed on in 1951 as the first station in Somerset County. It was full service and a longtime outlet for ABC News. It would be joined by an FM signal in 1966. The two stations were purchased in 1970 by Ridge Communications and from there get its largest growth.  WVSC-AM/FM was sold to Forever Broadcasting in 1997 with the FM taking on the Froggy format. In 2004, WVSC became WNTW and a simulcast of WNTJ in Johnstown.

1040 WZSK Everett, Pennsylvania
Owner: New Millenium Communications Group, Inc.
Format: News/Talk/Sports

WZSK signed on in 1963 and serves the Bedford, Somerset and Cumberland areas with 10,000 watts of daytime power.

1080 DWQRO Huntingdon, Pennsylvania
Last Owner: Megahertz Licenses (Forever Broadcasting)
Last Format : Top 40

This station went dark a number of years ago and was a sister to what is now WHUN-FM (106.3).

1110 WJSM Martinsburg, Pennsylvania
Owner: Martinsburg Broadcasting, Inc.
Format: Religious

WJSM signed on as the area’s religious outlet by Kenneth W. Ferry, owner of a trucking firm. The inspiration came from hearing WPHB in Philipsburg. Ferry applied for an AM station and in 1965 was granted an FM station after apparent confusion with several applications and amendments. Since FM was not heavily listened to in the 1960s, the station really pioneered the FM Christian format. But in 1968 the AM joined its FM counterpart. It was a daytime-only station thereby allowing the FM to cover the nighttime audience. Two employees bought the stations in 1975 and was among the first stations to air “Focus on the Family”. In 1989, Martinsburg Broadcasting bought the pair.

1150 WLLI Huntingdon, Pennsylvania
Owner:  Forever Broadcasting/Megahertz Licenses, LLC
Format: Country

WHUN-AM signed on in 1947 with Cary Simpson as part of the personnel. The station and its sister, WLAK-FM remained unsold until the mid 1990s when Forever Broadcasting bought it. In 2010, the WHUN calls were dropped from this signal when the format turned to country music.

1160 WCCS Homer City, Pennsylvania
Owner: St. Pier Group, LLC/Renda Broadcasting Corporation
Format: News/Talk/Sports

Two employees of Progressive Publishing, Mark Harley and Ray Goss, spearheaded the building of this station. Their first attempt was 1520 AM (WRID) in Ebensburg, but found a dormant permit in Homer City. They formed Raymark Broadcasting in 1982 and bought the permit from Ridge Communications. The station signed on in 1982 at 1520 AM from the middle of an alfalfa field. The WRID calls were rarely used – mainly the legal ID. The station was merely a daytimer. In 1986, after learning that WBZY had moved from 1140 to 1200 AM, Raymark moved WRID moved to 1160 and became WCCS. The station was bumped up from 1000 watts to 5000. In 1988 with the necessary upgrades, WCCS went to its full power of 10,000 watts. A year later, Goss retired and sold his portion to Harley. Harley sold WCCS to Renda Broadacasting in 2002.

1230 WCRO Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Owner: Greater Johnstown School District
Format: Nostalgia

WCRO went on the air in 1947 and has remained virtually the same ever since. In the mid-1980s, the station suffered as a result of the collapse of the area’s coal and steel industries. The airstaff was replaced with automation, but Tschudy Communications had to sell in order to keep the station on the air. In 1991, the station was sold to the Eagle Radio Network (religious) who made WCRO its flagship simulcasting on WNCC and WRDD. This lasted for a few years before FM translators were approved allowing a majority of Christian broadcasters access to the FM dial. Eagle Radio put the stations up for sale. While WNCC and WRDD were sold to Vernal Enterprises who refused WCRO. WCRO went to the Greater Johnstown School District in 1997 and was moved from its 50-year home to the high school campus. Under the leadership of Ed Sherlock, the station made enough money to offset the cost of operating the station.

1240 WRTA Altoona, Pennsylvania
Owner: Sherlock Broadcasting
Format: News/Talk/Sports

WTRA features a mix of local and syndicated talk of all varieties.

1260 WPHB Philipsburg, Pennsylvania
Owner: Magnum Broadcasting
Format: Country/Talk

WPHB has been on the air since 1956 when it signed on with a religious format. The Rev. William Emmert was responsible for putting the station on the air. In 1982, Moshannon Valley Broadcasting, operated by the Sharpless brothers, bought the station and combined the religious programming with country music. Sheldon Sharpless had been with the station for some 20 years by that time. In 1989, the brothers put WPHB-FM on the air at 105.9 FM and the two stations simulcast part of the day. The stations were eventually sold to Magnum, but Sheldon Sharpless remained a part of the team until 2010.

1290 WFBG Altoona, Pennsylvania
Owner: Forever Broadcasting
Format: News/Talk

WFBG signed on in 1924, but has a history of being the area’s Top-40 station for much of the 1970s and 80s under the leadership of Program Director Tony Booth. Often times the station would be a ratings winner until FM stations began to encroach on its dominance. After it’s hey day, the station adopted an Adult Standards format, but as a Forever station it has had a news/talk format.

1310 WBFD Bedford, Pennsylvania
Owner: Cessna Communications
Format: Adult Standards

WBFD has been on the air since 1955 and was the first station in Bedford County. It was a daytime-only station joined in 1966 by WAKM-FM. WBFD was granted nighttime power in the mid-1980s. WBFD was sold to Kessner Broadcasting in 1990 and dropped its top-40 format for contemporary Christian and Easy Listening. Kessner moved it to 1600 on the dial which was the home of its main competitor, WAYC who bought WBFD soon thereafter.

1330 DWBHV Somerset, Pennsylvania
Owner: 2510 Licenses, LLC
Format: Dark

WADJ signed on in 1981 under the ownership of Ron Lorence d/b/a Nor-Lin Broadcasters. Despite being a daytime-only signal, the station managed to compete with nearby WVSC.  Lorence, known for his work at WJAC-TV in Johnstown, managed the station and the programming while his wife oversaw sales. Their son eventually took on the programming duties. WADJ was granted a nighttime license in 1988 while they also purchased WYSN-FM In 1997, the WYSN calls were moved to 1330 when the FM became WSRA with a standards format. WYSN and WRSA were sold to Dame Media in 2000 and Ron Lorence remained on board until retiring in 2002. Brad Lorence remained until he was fired in 2004. The stations were sold to 2510 Licenses, LLC in 2005 and became WBHV whern it adopted a simulcast of WPRR. In 2007, the FCC rejected the sale of the stations to Forever Broadcasting, but Forever operates the stations WBHV, WPRR, WCCL and WLKH under an LMA. WBHV, however, went silent in 2011 and the towers have been dismantled.

1340 WTRN Tyrone, Pennsylvania
Owner: Allegheny Mountain Network
Format: Full service/AC

WTRN was part of a station growth in the central part of the Commonwealth inspired by Cary Simpson. Simpson put WTRN on the air in 1955 and that would be followed by an FM six years later at 101.1 FM. The station was close to Simpson’s home in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania and it was determined to make WTRN the corporate headquarters. The company was ahead of its time in centralizing traffic, billing and upper management while air- and sales staffers were all that existed at each station within the company. WTRN and its affiliates focus on the communities they serve to this day. Simpson still maintains duties as president of Allegheny Mountain Network and manager of WTRN. In 2009, WTRN began a broadcast on an FM translator at 100.7 – W264BZ.

1370 WKMC Roaring Spring, Pennsylvania
Owner: Handsome Brothers, Inc.
Format: Classic Hits

Once a country outlet, the station became sisters with WHPA in Hollidaysburg and sported a standards format. In the 1990s, the Allegheny Mountain Network bought the station and made it classic country. Eventually it picked up the Music of Your Life format that was once carried by WFBG. Now it sports a classic hits format.

1390 WRSC State College, Pennsylvania
Owner: Forever Broadcasting
Format: Business/Financial News Talk

 WRSC (Radio State College) was one a general talk station but in 2009, that was moved to WRSC-FM (103.1) and AM took on the present Business and Financial News/Talk format.

1400 WWGE Loretto, Pennsylvania
Owner: Pennsylvania Radiowerks
Format: Talk/Sports 

This was the original frequency for WJAC-AM which donated the station to St. Francis College when WJAC moved to 850. 1400 became WWSF. In the late 1970s, Pittsburgh announcer Ed Sherlock (and partners d/b/a Sherlock-Hart Broadcasting) bought WWSF and it became WAMQ – the first full-time AM signal in the Mainline area (“Day and Night Radio”). The same group was responsible for putting WBXQ-FM (94.3) Cresson on the air and WAMQ eventually became a partial simulcast of that. Eventually both were sold to employee Tom Stevens who made it WJRV, a soft rock station. Stevens operated the station until 1995 when he sold it and it became WEBG. Pennsylvania Radiowerks bought the station around the turn of the 21st Century and rebranded it WBZV and a talk format featuring G. Gordon Liddy, Don and Mike and the Greaseman. The station apparently went dark for a time around 2003 and came back with similar programming. It is simulcast over WKGE 850 in an agreement between Radiowerks and Birach Broadcasting who owns 850.

1430 WVAM Altoona, Pennsylvania
Owner: Forever Broadcasting
Format: Sports

As WVAM has had a couple of different formats over the years – News/Talk and Country being among them. WVAM currently runs the ESPN Sports format and serves as the Altoona Curve flagship station. It’s also an affiliate for various Pittsburgh teams.

1450 WDAD Indiana, Pennsylvania
Owner: St. Pier Group/Renda Broadcasting
Format: Classic Hits

 Signing on in 1945, WDAD was the first station in Indiana County and one of the first to obtain a license after World War II. It was first sold to Indiana Broadcasters, Inc. in 1958 who retained the ownership until 1989 when it went to Richard Sherry, (d/b/a RMS Media Management) who was the station’s general manager for 22 years prior. Over the years, WDAD had competition from WCCS and WLCY-FM but all three would eventually become sisters. Renda Broadcasting’s subsidiary, St. Pier Group, bought WLCY and WCCS from Longo Media in 2002. Two years later RMS Media sold WQMU and WDAD to Renda who began his career at WDAD.

1450 WQWK State College, Pennsylvania
Owner: Forever Broadcasting
Format: ESPN Sports

Formerly WMAJ, this station had an NBC affiliation to compliment its adult contemporary music. It gave up its call letters to an FM sister station when it became ESPN Radio.

1470 DWFJY Portage, Pennsylvania

The station has had several different guises over the years. WRML was a Top-40, country and an AC station. Later it was WWML and WZGO – an oldies station. In the early 2000s, WFJY was taken off the air and the license was transferred to a new operation on 660 AM in Wilkinsburg (a suburb of Pittsburgh) where the station started out as WCIX. It’s currently WAMO.

1490 WNTJ Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Owner: Forever Broadcasting
Format: News/Talk

Signed on as WARD in 1948, it would later be joined by WARD-FM (96.5… later moved to 95.5) and WARD-TV (Channel 56… later moved to 19). The stations were purchased by Jonel Construction Company and became WJNL-AM/FM/TV in 1970. In the 1980s, the organization fell on hard times starting with the TV station losing affiliation with CBS and the radio stations losing ad revenue from the loss of the coal and steel industries. The TV station was sold and the radio stations pressed on. Dame Media bought the stations at the beginning of the 1990s and gave the FM a format overhaul leaving the AM to simulcast as WKQS. In the mid 90s WNTJ was put on with a news/talk format which lasted through the ownership of Clear Channel who had bought out Dame in 1998. Forever bought this and other stations in 2004. WNTJ’s talk format and calls to 850 AM flipping 1490 to an ESPN Radio outlet with the WSPO calls that were on 850. Then the station was sold as WPRR to 2510 Licenses. 2510 wanted to sell WPRR and three other stations back to Forever in 2007, but the deal was rejected by the FCC thereby keeping an active LMA with Forever to operate the stations. In 2011, the stations were sold back to Forever and the WNTJ format returned to 1490.

1580 DWRDD Ebensburg, Pennsylvania
Last Owner: Vernal Enterprises, Inc.
Format: Deleted

 The Allegheny Mountain Network put WEND on in 1961 and was a simulcast of WEND-FM for several years. Francis Krug, general manager, bought the station with Robert Civis in 1972, but sold it five years later to Great American Wireless Signal. In 1982, Pittsburgh engineer Roy Humphrey bought the station and flipped the calls to WAJE. Another Pittsburgh engineer, Phillip Lenz (d/b/a Ebensburg Broadcast Group) bought the station and made it WEBG. He sold it five years later to Eagle Radio who made it WRDD and a simulcast of WCRO. In 1996, Larry Schrecongost (d/b/a Vernal Enterprises) bought WRDD and WNCC. WRDD went silent in 2010 citing technical problems and remained off the air for quite some time. Earlier that year, Schrecongost passed away leading to an immediate sale of his Kittanning property and WHPA. WRDD and sister WNCC went unsold for quite some time and WRDD was finally deleted by the FCC in 2013.

1600 WAYC Bedford, Pennsylvania
Owner: John H. Cessna
Format: Religious

 Originally WAYC served a Top-40 format. In the early 1990s, the four stations in Bedford County were under common ownership leading WAYC to move to 1310 and WBFD to 1600. Once the stations were sold in 1999, WBFD moved back to 1310 and 1600 became WHJB, a set of calls that were recently abandoned by 620 AM in Greensburg. In 2009, the calls changed back to WAYC and the WHJB calls returned to Greensburg on their former FM home at 107.1. The current format for 1600 is religious.