WEOS Finger Lakes Public Radio

About WEOS

What Is WITH? | What about WHWS? | Where can I hear HWS sports broadcasts?How is WEOS Funded?Driving Directions | Studio Rentals | History of WEOS |Board of Trustees |Community Advisory Board | Financial Statements|

What is WEOS?
WEOS is primarily a public radio news, information and music station, broadcasting to the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York.  We air many popular public radio programs from NPR, PRI, the BBC World Service, and Pacifica Radio...including Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Democracy Now!, Fresh Air, Living on Earth, Only a Game, Whad'ya Know?, Wait, Wait...Don't Tell Me!, World Cafe, and This American Life.

We also air several locally-produced programs, such as Out of Bounds, Stuck in the Psychedelic Era, and Gospel Outreach.

WEOS operates in partnership with WXXI Public Broadcasting in Rochester.  We often air special coverage of local, state and national news that is produced by WXXI.

Our main signal is 89.5, transmitting from a few miles west of Geneva, covering most of the Finger Lakes.  We also have a repeater station on 90.3 in downtown Geneva.

What about WITH-FM?
WITH 90.1FM Ithaca is a broadcast station launched in 2010 that serves Ithaca and the surrounding areas.  It will operated jointly between WEOS and the WXXI Public Broadcasting Council.   It features a mostly Triple-A (Adult Album Alternative) music format with selected public affairs programming.  The station's website  is available at www.withradio.org

What about WHWS?
WHWS-LP 105.7FM Geneva is Hobart & William Smith Colleges' station, devoted to programming specific to the Greater Geneva community.  It has more campus-related shows with student programs, faculty symposiums, and additional Hobart Statesmen and William Smith Herons sports coverage.   It also showcases Radio Bilingue, the only Spanish-language service in the Finger Lakes!  For more info, visit http://www.whws.fm/

Where can I hear coverage of HWS athletic contests?
Our parent organization is Hobart and William Smith Colleges.  We provide extensive sports coverage of HWS Athletics on our sister station, WHWS 105.7FM in Geneva.  But due to schedule conflicts we still air some sports, namely Hobart football and Hobart lacrosse, on WEOS in the fall and spring, respectively.   There is a full schedule posted on the WHWS website. Additional coverage is available on the HWS Athletics site.



How is WEOS funded?
WEOS is funded by underwriting contributions from local businesses, donations from our loyal listeners, and some federal grants from the Corporation of Public Broadcasting.  We also receive funding from our parent organization (and FCC license-holder) Hobart & William Smith Colleges and through our partnership with WXXI.
However, our largest source of funding, by far, is listener donations.  We depend on contributions from our listeners to keep going, so please help us with your donation: click here to give online. Complete information on supporting WEOS is located under the Support Link on this site.
 



How do I get to WEOS's studios?  (Directions)
The WEOS studios are located on the campus of the Hobart & William Smith Colleges, in the city of Geneva, New York.  This is in the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York...roughly halfway between Rochester and Syracuse.

General Directions: Our street address is  300 Pulteney Street, Geneva, NY 14456, inside The Scandling Center.  We are a about one block east of the intersection of Pultenty Street and Routes 5 & 20.  Once onto Pulteney Street, look for the first brick  building on the right.  There is parking in the lots adjacent to the building or across the street next to the art center. 

From the I-90 Thruway/points north: Take exit 42, after the tolls turn right on Rt.14.   Continue on Route 14 into the city of Geneva, turning right on Castle St, then the next left onto South Main Street   At the signs for Rt.5&20 East, turn right onto the ramp, then right again onto Hamilton street (5&20).  At the light, turn left onto Pulteney Street. The parking lots will be visible on the right and left. WEOS is in the Scandlng Center,  the first brick building on the right side.

From Ithaca/points south or east: Take Rt.96 to Rt.96A to Rt.5&20 West.  Stay on 5&20 past Rt.14 and turn left onto Pulteney Street. The parking lots will be visible on the right and left. WEOS is in the Scandlng Center,  the first brick building on the right side.

From Canandaigua/points west: Take Rt.5&20.  When you reach the City of Geneva, you'll past the HWS athletic fields on your right, and go up and over a small hill.   After the hill, the next traffic light is Pulteney Street. Turn right at the light. The parking lots will be visible on the right and left. WEOS is in the Scandlng Center,  the first brick building on the right side.


Does WEOS Rent their Studios for ISDN Interviews?
Yes, we do!   If you want to interview someone in the Geneva area and have CD-quality audio with real-time conversations, our ISDN is just want you need. We also have Comrex Access equipment, and a production fiber link to WXXI studios in Rochester, where ISDN is also available.

Who should I contact for booking?  Greg Cotterill cotterill@hws.edu - call us at (315) 781-3456; this rings all the phones in the WEOS studio and is the best way to reach someone quickly.   To leave a voicemail, call Greg at (315) 781-3811.  

How many guests can WEOS handle?  Our facilities are set up to handle two guests in our voice booth, plus one more in the control room.  We may be able to accommodate more, with enough lead time.

What telco equipment do you have?   We have a Telos Zephyr Xstream for ISDN or regular telephone calls, a Comrex Vector, and a Comrex Access.   We mostly use Electrovoice RE-20 and Shure SM-7B professional studio microphones.   The Xstream is capable of the universal G.722 codec, the NPR-standard MPEG L2/128 codec, and also AAC and AAC-LD (low delay) codecs. We also have a production link to WXXI in Rochester. We can do a "tape sync" record, recording your guest and sending the audio file to you. 

What are your phone numbers?  Our ISDN numbers are (315) 781-5597 and (315) 781-5598.   To speak to the engineer in the studio, call (315) 781-3456.

What are your rental rates?  Studio rental is $75/hr with a one hour minimum.   With prior notice, we can record the conversation to audio CD or audio file.

How do guests get to your studio & where do they park?   Public transit (C.A.T.S.) is available in the Geneva area, but cars are the predominate method of transportation.  WEOS is located in a house in the Scandling Center on the on the campus of Hobart & William Smith Colleges.  See the directions above for more details.   


The History of WEOS

History: The Early Years

WEOS started in 1947 or 1948...based on different sources...as a carrier current AM radio station located at, and limited to, Hobart and William Smith Colleges.  It primarily was used as a means of rebroadcasting recorded lectures from Western Civilization or other classes for students to either re-hear, or if they missed the lecture, hear for the first time.  However, there are records and citations that mention broadcast experiments and other related efforts in earlier years, one involving the broadcast of a Hobart and Union College football game in 1920.

The station was operated by students, many of which were part of the Delta Chi fraternity. The station's studios were in Smith Hall, before moving to the basement of Sherrill Hall, where real broadcast studios were built in the 1960s. The studios remained there until 1998 when WEOS moved to a house located at 113 Hamilton Street (aka Routes 5 & 20). This was a "temporary" move, until a more permanent space could be provided. Sixteeen years later,  in 2014, WEOS moved into new studios in The Scandling Center.

History: The path of WEOS's FM station

In its more modern form, WEOS was granted a construction permit in 1970, for 91.3FM, as a "Class D" license, limited to 10 watts.  However, this frequency would have precluded Syracuse from getting a public radio station ( now WCNY). Through negotiation, the station applied for and changed its frequency to 89.7FM. The station went on the air in 1971, broadcasting a variety of programs both recorded and live, all forms of music, news, and sports, including those of NPR. The broadcast antenna was on the roof of Eaton Hall on the Campus

Realizing the risks inherent to remaining a "secondary" Class D license, and also recognizing the advantages of increasing wattage...the station boosted the power in steps, first to 250 watts, then 460 watts, and finally 1500 watts in the mid- to late-1970's. The latter moved the transmitter site and tower to the roof of Winn-Seeley Gymnasium in the mid 1970s. The station had an old RCA tranmitter and a Phelps-Dodge 4 bay antenna.

Unfortunately, in July 1988, lightning struck the antenna, and a fire destroyed the transmitter and related equipment. The transmitter was to be replaced and back on the air by September, but it was destroyed in-transit in a truck accident, and ultimately didn't arrive until mid-December of 1988. A new Harris FM1-K was installed in a new location in Winn-Seeley gym, along with related audio processing gear and a remote control. The Studio/Transmitter Link (STL)  was a crude-but-functional buried multi-conductor shielded audio cable running from building to building from Sherrill Hall in the old Alpha System fire alarm conduit. The station used to run audio and voltages on these cables, in a home built remote control.

The advent of the new transmitter and a new remote control, allowed for the stereo audio, return audio from Remote Pickup (RPU) transmitters  and the data to still use this cable, which when equalized, was flat from 15 Hz to 22 kHz!   The RPU's were used for remote broadcasting from sports fields, other campus locations,  and locations in town with FM-quality sound. .

Due to the failure of the broadcast antenna in 1989, a new ERI 4 bay antenna.  It's still in use today for the on-campus repeater station W212BA on 90.3FM.

In 1994, The station applied for and was granted a construction permit to move the transmitter site off campus. For years, there was an effort to get the station's transmitter up on "Bean's Hill" to lessen multipath interference and help improve coverage. This came to pass with a move to Stanley, NY, on a tower site owned by Ontario County public safety on Lake to Lake Road.  The station went on the air from that tower  briefly, before moving to a new tower site directly adjacent to it.  The ERP was raised to 4000 watts, with a directional antenna, to protect a co-channel and adjacent stations. This greatly improved the WEOS coverage area, especially towards Ithaca and other points east.

Most folks on campus had gotten used to WEOS's signal being very strong on-campus, thanks to the 1500 watts from the roof Winn-Seeley.  This move to Stanley greatly expanded WEOS's overall signal, but the actual signal levels on campus were much less.  To help make up for that, WEOS added an FM Translator: W212BA, at 90.3FM at 88 watts to fill in the signal on the campus. It  provides excellent signal to campus and downtown Geneva. 

History: The Shift to NPR Programming

Up until 1990, the station was at the will and whim of the students and community volunteers, as to when the station would sign on the air. In 1988, the Colleges' President, Carroll Brewster, charged WEOS to become more consistent in its programming, and to pursue adding public radio programming.  At first, there was resistance from students, who equated "public radio" with classical music.  However, WEOS chose to pursue a more news/talk focus during the day and modern alternative music at night, a format that quickly proved popular both on- and off-campus.  This popularly was cemented when  the 1990-91  Gulf War I occurred, and WEOS became...and remains...a primary source in the area for up to the minute news and information from NPR.  WEOS continues to produce the broadcast of visiting speakers, sporting events, live concerts, and other programming.

The station's 24/7 non-commercial news and eclectic music format serves a large audience, with a large percentage of the listenership in the Ithaca and southern Finger Lakes area. NPR, APM, PRI, Pacifica, and other public radio programming are a mainstay, with local music and other programming, including occasional broadcasts of Hobart Statesmen and William Smith Heron athletic contests.

WEOS also originated broadcasts for the NCAA in the early 1990s of the Men's NCAA Lacrosse Championships. This continued in the 1990s, and the broadcasts were carried by radio stations both in the United States and worldwide, including Japan and Australia.  This effort laid the foundation for much of what occurs in the broadcast and streaming of NCAA championships today.  

History: Digital "HD Radio" Broadcasting

In 2004, WEOS was the first station outside of New York City and the Albany area to broadcast in HD Radio.  HD Radio is a digital broadcast method that allows for HD Radio-equipped radios to hear crystal-clear sound with little or no static, pops, clicks or fades.  Eventually it will allow us to "multicast" additional program channels on our signal.  WEOS was an early adopter of webcasting, using Mark Cuban's Audionet, Webradio, and Broadcast America for streaming. WEOS has been using NPR Digital Services for its streaming, and provides mp3 and Itunes formats . WEOS also has archives and podcasts of its programming.

History: The advent of WHWS 105.7FM

In early 2008, WEOS expanded its program offerings with the launch of WHWS 105.7FM.  Broadcasting from the HWS campus to the greater Geneva community...reaching from Canandaigua to Seneca Falls to Ovid to Penn Yan.  For more info about WHWS, check out http://www.whws.fm/WHWS is licensed to the Colleges, and operated by students at Hobart & William Smith Colleges.


Board of Trustees

WEOS is owned by Hobart & William Smith Colleges, who holds the FCC license. The station's governing board is the Board of Trustees of the Colleges. The current board is found here: Hobart & William Smith Colleges Board of Trustees


Community Advisory Board

The Community Advisory Board meets on a semi-annual basis and is composed of people who are reasonably representative of the diverse needs and interests of the communities served by WEOS. Board members serve a renewable three-year term and must be willing to regularly attend board meetings.

The CAB is designed to review the impact of the programming goals, community service and significant policy decisions established by the station. Its role is strictly advisory and it has no authority over the daily management or operation of the station. There is no financial compensation for service, but there are no fundraising responsibilities. Employees of WEOS and Hobart & William Smith Colleges may not serve. The CAB has open recruitment for new members every year.  

The Community Advisory Board meets twice a year at WEOS's Studios in the Scandling Center on Hobart & William Smith Colleges' campus in Geneva, NY. Meetings are open to the public. Dates for the  meetings are announced at least seven days in advance. For information about how to attend or to inquire about applying to the board,  please email cotterill@hws.edu.