Category Archives: Connecting to Local Communities

WXYZ-TV Welcomes the Brightest and Best High School Seniors


On May 12, WXYZ-TV (Detroit) held its 39th annual “Brightest and Best” celebration, at the station’s studios to recognize the academic achievements of local graduating high school seniors.

For more than three decades, WXYZ has welcomed graduates and their families for a morning of celebration.

Students were also able to take part in a Twitter Scavenger Hunt.

The list required them to run around the grounds, mingle with WXYZ reporters and anchors, and snap photos. They took over social media with their adventures and you can get a recap by checking out the hashtag #BrightestAndBest on Twitter.

WRIF Serves Up Drinks For A Great Cause

Beasley Media Group’s WRIF-FM (Detroit) has been partnering with the The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) which works to treat and cure Type 1 Diabetes. This charity is particularly important to WRIF Music Director Jade Springart, who has Type 1 Diabetes.

Starting in 2017, WRIF put together a “Charity Bartending” Event where Jade spent a few hours behind the bar at a local establishment and collected tips to go to support JDRF. Moving forward to 2018, 101 WRIF reached out to JDRF again about the opportunity to host the event again, and this year was able to “step the event up a notch”!

Prior to the event, Jade had been able to connect with Chris Jericho, of the WWE and also the singer for the rock band Fozzy, about being involved with this year’s bartending event. Chris is also a supporter of JDRF as his family has also been affected by Type 1 Diabetes. In her conversations with him about getting some autographed items to use for the event, the conversation led to him offering to come to the event and jump behind the bar with her and raise money to support JDRF.

On Friday, March 30, Chris Jericho’s band, Fozzy, played a sold-out show in Detroit at St. Andrews Hall. That day starting at 4 p.m., 101 WRIF hosted a party a few blocks away from the venue at The Checker Bar Detroit. 101 WRIF’s Jade Springart and Riff Rock Girl Kara took over the bar starting at 4 pm to start serving drinks for charity. From 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., 100 percent of all the tips that they received as well as 10 percent of the sales for the bar went directly to JDRF. Additionally, 101 WRIF hosted a silent auction featuring items such as a WWE Folding Chair, signed Fozzy Posters, signed drumheads and photos from various other bands, a “Ticket To Rock” package with tickets to over a dozen shows coming to Detroit this year, and more. In addition to Jade and Rock Girl Kara, some of the other WRIF staff came out to support or made donations to JDRF, including Anne Carlini, Andy Green from Dave & Chuck The Freak, and Meltdown.

Aside from the WRIF staff on hand, the band Through Fire, who was also performing at St. Andrews that night, showed up to support the event and the charity. At 5 p.m., the special guest for the day, Chris Jericho, arrived to work “his shift” serving up drinks to Detroiters for this great cause. Chris jumped right behind the bar with Jade and Kara, and started serving excited patrons. He took the time to speak to all the people lined up at the bar as well as signing items and taking selfies, and collecting tips for the JDRF tip jar. Additionally, he and Jade jumped on the microphone and hooked up some very lucky listeners at the bar with tickets to the sold-out show that night. Initially only planning to stay about a half hour, Chris graciously stayed over an hour at the event and took the time to speak to the couple hundred people that worked their way into the Checker Bar that afternoon.

Over the course of the three-hour event, Jade, Chris Jericho and The WRIF Staff were able to raise over $2800 for Juvenile Diabetes Research. Following the event that day and the Fozzy show that evening, Chris Jericho also “tweeted” Jade that someone at his show that evening made a donation of an additional $1,000 to JDRF while they were performing onstage.

101 WRIF looks forward to the future of being able to “serve up some drinks” and help in the mission that JDRF has set forth to end Type 1 Diabetes!

WILX-TV Raises Over $800,000 on ‘Day of Miracles’ Telethon

On Friday, April 20, WILX-TV (Lansing) devoted its broadcast day to raising funds for the Sparrow Hospital Children’s Center annual “Day of Miracles.”

The station broadcast live from the center throughout the day, with interviews and patient stories.   The station also pre-empted its evening prime-time programming from 7 to 11:00 p.m. with a 4-hour live telethon.

As of press time, more than $800,000 was raised in this year’s event.

Heritage Broadcasting Will Host Opioid Epidemic Forum on April 18

Heritage Broadcasting’s WWTV/WWUP-TV (Cadillac) and Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Blue Care Network of Michigan have teamed up to shed some light on opioid issues in Northern Michigan.

The 9&10 News team’s Michelle Dunaway and David Lyden will discuss the important truths and statistics with a panel of local specialists and law enforcement personal from throughout the viewing area.

“Opioid use in Northern Michigan is climbing at an alarming rate and as an organization that values being a reliable source of information, we feel compelled to discuss all the facts and bring it to our viewers. Knowledge is power and we want to make sure everyone who sees or hears this forum feels empowered to help stop opioid abuse in our communities. ” said Kevin Dunaway, Vice President/General Manager.

The forum will air live on 9&10 News and Local 32 on Wednesday, April 18, from 7 p.m.-8 p.m. Reruns of the forum will air on Sunday, April 22, at 11 a.m. on Local 32 and 12 p.m. on WWTV. WTCM will simulcast the forum live on Newstalk 580 WTCM for those listening on radio.

WTIQ Hosts CBC Fundraiser

This past Sunday, March 25, WTIQ-AM (Manistique) aired an annual radiothon fundraiser for CBC.  CBC stands for Cancer, Bay Cliffs and Community. One-third of the proceeds will go to the Cancer Society, one-third to Bay Cliffs and one-third  to a community organization that is health related.  This is the 51st year the station has been broadcasting the event.

The radiothon was broadcast live on the station from noon until 7 p.m. at Manistique High School.

While this year’s total is not yet available, last year the effort raised $56,000.

WYTZ Raises Big Money for St. Jude

(l-r) WYTZ’s Lindsay Kay Zvonar and Paul Layendecker, on-air during the Radiothon.

On February 15 and 16, Midwest Family Broadcasting’s WYTZ-FM (Benton Harbor) held its 12th annual 97.5 Y Country “St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital Country Cares Radiothon,” and so far, with additional post-event donations, it’s raised at least $38,000.

For 12 years, Y Country staff have held the fundraiser, asking people to donate to St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Morning host Matt Malone told sister-station WSJM that this was an excellent year.

“The outpouring of support was absolutely incredible,” Malone said. “The fact that we had all of our Y Country family show up was amazing.”

Malone says hearing the stories of cancer survivors is always emotional for each host on the radio-thon. He proved his dedication to the charity on Monday by getting a St. Jude tattoo. That was in response to a bet he made with listeners this year, saying he’d get inked for St. Jude if the Radiothon raised at least $10,000 on its first day.



WWJ’s Winter Survival Radiothon For THAW Raises $1.4 Million

Entercom’s WWJ-AM (Detroit) raised more than $1.4 million in their 15th annual Winter Survival Radiothon for THAW, The Heat and Warmth Fund.

Along with our enthusiastic volunteers, the station took calls all day February 9, broadcasting live from our radio studios in Southfield, collecting donations to keep Michigan families in need warm this winter.

THAW assists families in need by preventing utility shut-off, providing fuel or restoring services. 91% of every dollar that THAW spends goes directly to help those in need and THAW’s utility partners match every dollar that THAW raises, so that $1 becomes $2 in energy assistance.

This support can be life-saving for struggling Michigan families facing a serious financial crisis — usually due to a job loss, a serious illness or other family emergency — who are temporarily unable to pay their utility bills.

Increased Recruiting Call Since National Guard Returned To NCSA

In a recent meeting between the MAB and members of Michigan Army National Guard , it was reported that recruiting inquiries have increased since the the Guard Bureau in Washington D.C. returned to NCSA. The Michigan Army National Guard asks people how they heard about the opportunities in the Guard and many have identified radio and or television (or both) as their source of information.

“We are elated” said MAB President/CEO Karole L. White. “Radio and Television works well to help partners reach their goals. Michigan Broadcasters are the best!”

Rick Teeter, marketing and advertising specialist at Michigan Army National Guard, said that he knows how precious our member’s airtime is, and the Michigan National Guard truly appreciates all of the emphasis that MAB members are giving to their messages.

MAB members understand the importance of a strong Michigan National Guard. Citizen soldiers are there to help in time of crisis here and abroad. Airing the recruitment messages is one thing broadcasters can do to help and to say thank you to the men and women who leave their families to help us in times of need.

Click here to learn more about this important partnership and download messages. Contact Denise Weston at 1-800-YOUR-MAB if you have questions or would like to book an interview the a Michigan National Guard representative. Anything you can do will help.

WXYZ Gears Up For Annual MHS Valentine’s Telethon

WXYZ-TV (Detroit) will air the Michigan Humane Society’s annual “Valentine’s Telethon”  on February 8, from 6 a.m. to midnight. Last year’s event raised $382,000 for local animals in need. For a seventh consecutive year the Telethon is sponsored by Purina.

Alicia Smith, anchor for “7 Action News This Morning,” will host the broadcast. Smith will entertain viewers with stories of animal rescues, cruelty investigations, and redemption. She will reunite adoptive families with the MHS, and the broadcast will feature a live puppy playpen.

“We are really excited to showcase the work made possible by our generous supporters,” said Matthew Pepper, president and CEO of the MHS. “They made the call last year, enabling us to provide critical services to tens of thousands of pets and their families. Without that support, none of what we do is possible.”

Viewers will see segments during commercial breaks throughout the day. They can also watch the telethon’s live puppy cam at

The Michigan Humane Society relies on the generosity of donors, not government funds. Its first telethon aired in 1996, making this its 22nd broadcast.