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General News · 8th May 2012
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This has been a tremendous year for the Cortes Community Radio Society!

The long term goal of acquiring our license has been achieved, with major team work and effort from many people. However, December was the most stressful month I have ever experienced with the radio, turning off the signal for 6 weeks was a frightening move, leaving me to wonder, would we go back on? The effort of our many volunteers during the November/December technical testing period was monumental, and the Industry Canada representative who came to inspect us was much impressed with our community approach. Many thanks to Sean Cowell, John Jordan, Ron Kroeker, Howie Roman, Lee Whittle, Dino Tsakonas, Vicki Smith, and Gary Cork for seeing this all through, way to go team!

Add to this the unexpected opportunity to move into our own studio, right around the same time, and it felt like we were growing so fast I hoped we could keep up! Fortunately, once again our group of volunteers stepped up, this time led by Howie Roman and the necessary renovations to the portable were made quickly and with very little cost incurred as Quadra Builders were generous with their donations. Part of our agreement with the SCCA is that we build a free standing roof over the portable within the next two years. So expect a call for help when that project starts. The new studio is a fantastic upgrade from the old one and we feel it is the perfect place for us to grow into. Thank you to all those who helped make this possible, including Howie , John Jordan, Sean Cowells, Doug Wyler, and Doug with the moustache. Also, kudos to the twincomm crew for setting us up on the technical side of things.

We are happy with the new and ongoing shows that are emerging, including our own local news show with Philip Stone, Around the Point, and a new biweekly show with our Regional Director Noba Anderson, with People’s Place in Politics Tuesdays and rebroadcast Saturdays. Our youth drop in hour has been quite well attended with different groups of kids using it at different times. We would like to continue to develop this program; making space for our island kids on the radio is a key goal of the Society. Check them out on Mondays 3-5pm. I am super happy to announce that Norman Harry Sr. has returned to bring us news and views and the language of the Klahoose Nation. This is so awesome, this week he had Chief James Delorme on, and the week previous he had Ken Hanuse as a guest; check it out Thursday’s at 2 o’clock. Our new Quadra Island shows are mostly on Wednesday between noon and 4 o’clock. Our current shows and djs are just getting better and better, the effort going in is really quite impressive, I am proud of our station, and what we have achieved. Always room to continue to improve of course! We are really in need of more volunteers to take on specific jobs, like helping with the building of playlists. I would also love to see more community members come in and record station ids, it’s fun, only takes a couple of minutes, and adds a fresh taste to our playlists.

Another huge step this year was fulfilling the long term plan of having a satellite studio on Quadra Island. Philip Stone of the Discovery Islander has built a tiny studio in his office, where Quadra folks can come use the equipment to record and produce their shows, which they then email to us and we insert them into the playlist. It is our hope to set up something similar at the Surge Narrows School on Read Island; bringing the voices and experiences of the Discovery Islands to all our listeners.

We have received a few grants this year, the Region District Grant in aid, which went toward tower upgrades and broadcast equipment, and the Coastal Community Credit Union grant is to go toward dj and volunteer training. Last years’CCCU grant was designated to our youth radio training and will carry on through this summer. We continue to receive a remarkable amount of donations, of many things, some more useful than others! Fundraising has been ongoing and good, with the fantastic Lip Sync in February, our AGM and membership drive and the Battle of the Bands in May. We had our annual table at Cortes Day, but we missed the parade, hopefully this year! We hosted the second bi-annual Lip Sync in August, with many new acts, so much fun, but this year it will fall in July on Saturday the 21st, so GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER! Once again we hosted the drive in movie, this year Wizard of Oz, such a cool family event we really would like to continue this in the fall when it gets dark a little earlier. Also, the Christmas hamper raffles were an added bonus when we really needed it in December. Individual show sponsorships have become a great monthly income for us, and we encourage island business and individuals to consider sponsoring a show, it’s quite an affordable direct target advertising opportunity, only $25.00 a month! Please contact Ron Kroeker at 250-935-6906 or email wylie63aol.com if interested.

This year Cortes Community Radio forayed into cyberspace with a facebook page and twitter account, if you are interested in being added to either of these, just search cortesradio in both. Also our extension webpage on tidelines cortesisland.com continues to deliver updates on the goings on of Cortes Radio, as well as provide additional income through our paypal account.
Now that we have come through so many big changes, we would like to focus on a long term goal setting session. There are still many things that need to happen to improve the current situation we are in. We really need to focus on solidifying our back-up power; this is THE key component to being able to broadcast in any kind of emergency. We hope to work closely with the Emergency Services groups to ensure that we can fulfill the important role of real time emergency information delivery. We would also like to work our budget and set financial spending goals, to ensure that we use our hard earned dollars as wisely as possible.

Lastly, we would like to say good bye and thank our out-going board member Vicki Smith. Vicki is the longest standing board member of this Society, being one of the original signees, and has continued for the last eight years to do much for this station. Including, keeping meticulous financial records, creating a membership database, and receiving and tracking all of our sponsorships. Vicki is also largely responsible for the organization of the Lip Sync event, as well as the Christmas Raffles, and has had a hand in pretty much all of our fundraisers. Thankfully Vicki assures us she will continue to hang around to help with things. Thank you Vicki! Your station loves you! We would also like to welcome and thank our two new board members, Crystal Kingwill, and Gerry Watson, thank you, thank you!

Yours truly,
Amber Sprungman