Some of you may have noticed that local radio station WQNA (88.3 fm) is currently off the airwaves and has been since last Thursday, meaning the Black Sheep / Dumb Records radio show also did not air. It seems a number of difficulties have caused this to happen, and the volunteer-ran radio station is going to have to reach out for help of the community to get back on its feet:
“We have suffered what we can best describe as a perfect storm of simultaneous technical disasters. In addition to losing all of our computers and files to a Cryptovirus, both our main transmitter and our backup transmitter have failed. The main transmitter is down, because our 300 foot antenna is covered with ice. Unfortunately, we can’t really do anything about that until it thaws, and that’ll probably be a while. When we tried to fire up the backup, we discovered that a major part called the Exciter had crapped out, and that we would have to replace it. If we had a working transmitter, we could at least broadcast the old fashioned way for a while, with CD’s, vinyl, and our own I-pods and laptops, but at the moment, we can’t even do that.”
– Jim Pemberton, Station Manager
Currently it seems that the station which is based out of the Capital Area Career Center needs to be raising money for new computers to replace those affected by a cryptovirus that got to multiple computers in the facility, also to get a working transmitter up and running. In addition to that the station is going to be needing to raise money to cover licensing fees for the next year once the available parts are ready for it to get back up and running.
We are very much crossing our fingers for our show space at the new Dumb Records to get up and running very soon so we can host a benefit show (or more) to help get WQNA back on its feet! There may also be a GoFundMe campaign launched at somepoint soon. We are also considering donating a percentage of Dumb Records store sales to WQNA for a given timeframe if we do not get approved for events in the new space soon. In the meantime, WQNA can take donations in the form of checks made out to “WQNA Activity Fund.” Anyone who wishes to donate can also drop off checks with us at Dumb Records and we will be sure to deliver them to CACC or the station manager. Those checks can also be mailed to 2201 Toronto Rd, Springfield, IL 62712.
We will be sure to keep you all updated on the situation over at WQNA- it is likely that online streaming will be back up and running at some point before normal radio is. The Black Sheep Radio Show has been running as a weekly radio program on WQNA for over six years now, since the start of 2013.