NEW BERN, N.C., May 15, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- A new radio studio housed in two shipping containers is now part of the revitalization of Downtown Las Vegas, serving as a modern throwback to the days when listeners and artists could walk into any radio station on Main Street with a request or a record album.
"It's sort of like being back in high school again when everyone cruised (downtown) Fremont street with their radios turned up," says Tom Humm, who was raised in the area and is now the Vice President and Market Manager for Beasley Media Group, Las Vegas.
The new Beasley Media/Cox Business Broadcasting Studio built for Beasley Media Group's five Las Vegas stations sits adjacent to a busy amphitheater in Downtown Container Park, the area's newest shopping and entertainment center constructed of cargo containers stacked on top of each other.
Like early radio, the new studio brings back that main street accessibility to music and entertainment for which radio is known – but with a modern twist. The new remote studio sponsored by Cox Business includes a bank of phone chargers for use by the public. Recently, on Star Wars day (May the 4th be with you), fans were able to re-charge their iPhones and Androids while walking around the park dressed in costumes as part of a Beasley event commemorating their big day with contests and prizes.
"We're definitely bringing life back to downtown. We did our first-ever adult Easter egg hunt here as a remote broadcast, even before the studio was finished. We invited 300 people and we had 4,500 people in line before 9 o'clock, so I guess that's a pretty good indication of how alive local radio is here," commented Humm, whose career in Las Vegas radio has spanned more than four decades, including radio's heyday in downtown Las Vegas.
Beasley's own KDWN-AM as well as KENO-AM and KGIX-AM were located on or near downtown Las Vegas starting in the 1940s, but like other stations across the nation, they abandoned their downtown studios as part of urban sprawl and began relying on remote vehicles for live coverage of local events.
Beasley Media Group Las Vegas owns NewsTalk 720 KDWN-AM and four other stations: Classic Hits 96.3 KKLZ-FM, Vegas' New Country 102.7 KCYE-FM (The Coyote), Old School 105.7 KOAS-FM, and Star 107.9 KVGS-FM.
Now, with the use of modern technology, Beasley is able to return radio to Downtown Las Vegas as part of the revitalization in that historic area. A fiber optic communications link sponsored by Cox Business and modern IP audio networking by broadcast equipment manufacturer Wheatstone now make it possible to seamlessly link the group's main studio on Durango Drive some 15 miles outside of town to the remote studio at Downtown Container Park.
The park's inaugural year brought in more than one million visitors and welcomed artists such as Sheryl Crow, Cults, Belmont Lights and Cayucas – a venue now on tap by Beasley's five local stations, thanks to the new studio.
"We're extremely excited to welcome the Beasley Media/Cox Business Broadcasting Studio to the Park. Not only do we think they are going to be a great addition to our already unique business mix, it's going to be a lot of fun to have them broadcasting live from the park," said Doug McPhail, Container Park's director of retail operations.
"We're very excited about the vitality and energy of this strategic partnership with Beasley Media that has resulted in the Cox Business Broadcasting Studio," agreed Derrick R. Hill, vice president of Cox Business / Hospitality Network.
Construction for the new studio began in February and its completion coincided with the National Association of Broadcasters convention, which was held April 11 to 16 in Las Vegas and was attended by more than 100,000 people from around the globe.
Beasley Media Group owns and operates 53 radio stations (34 FM and 19 AM) in twelve large- and mid-size markets. It is the oldest continuously managed, publicly traded, pure play radio broadcaster in the country.
About Wheatstone (www.wheatstone.com): Located in New Bern, North Carolina, USA, Wheatstone Corporation designs and manufactures professional broadcast audio equipment under the WHEATSTONE and AUDIOARTS ENGINEERING brand names. Products include digital audio consoles and control surfaces, analog audio consoles, networked digital audio systems, audio-over-IP, signal processing for on-air and studio applications, pre-wiring, and software.
SOURCE Wheatstone Corporation