Our stations have the opportunity to give small, local events and organizations the media attention they deserve. There is so much innovation happening in Lexington that we need many volunteers to do it justice. . Do you have a great idea for a news segment or an event that needs to be covered -- a spelling bee, science fair, poetry slam? Let us know! firstname.lastname@example.org or call 859 227-7529.
Mail a check to
Lexington Community Radio
P.O. Box 526
or donate on our website:
LCR is also appreciative of in-kind donations: office supplies, tech support, graphic design, and promotion in local publications.
Lexington Community Radio's mission is to empower the community by engaging listeners with local, timely, and relevant information and opinions that positively impact safety and quality of life in Lexington.
Our studios are in the Lexington STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Arts and Math) Academy, a public magnet high school in Lexington's North End. WLXL and WLXU are Lexington's first low-power FM stations, an FCC designation intended to give the power of the microphone and radio waves back to community members and nonprofit entities. Each of our 100-watt signals creates a 5 miles broadcast radius (approximately), which allows us to create and air content that informs and entertains the 200,000 people in our combined broadcast area.
In 2014, we sent a group of Lexingtonians to the national Grassroots Radio Conference in Ames, Iowa. Our volunteers and staff came back with a wealth of information from other grassroots radio stations and enthusiasts and we really began to hit the ground running.
Our Founding Community Partners include
- Community Involvement:
We lead five community meetings in Spanish and English, where we recruited dozens of volunteers of many different backgrounds and solidified our programming schedule. We have provided rich volunteer, service learning, and internship opportunities for UK students.
- Community Member Trainings:
We trained community members in both English and Spanish to create, produce, and communicate our original radio content.
- Content Development:
Months before we went on air, LCR proved itself as an important community asset by creating and airing local stories that would not have been covered by mainstream media in Lexington. Examples of these segments include
1. We are seeking committed volunteers who share in our vision of a more informed, connected, included, equitable and empowered Lexington. Volunteer opportunities include being on the air, helping with production, joining our Community and Youth Advisory Board, mentoring central Lexington youth, and representing LCR at events. We are in great need of Spanish speaking volunteers.
2. We are looking for local businesses who are interested in purchasing LCR underwriting packages. Our rates are affordable for businesses and organizations that are usually priced out of traditional advertising.
3. Local organizations who are interested in creating a radio segment to talk about their work and create PSAs.
5. GREAT IDEAS! What makes LCR possible is the participation of Lexington's vibrant community members. Our stations are created by, for, and from central Lexington. Do you have a great idea for a radio show? Do you know about an event or story that should be covered? Tell us about it!
Here’s our philosophy: When people feel as if they don't matter, they naturally feel as if their actions—or lack of action—don't matter, either. LCR is turning up community involvement and responsibility by turning up connection and inclusion. Our listeners will hear their friends and neighbors discussing issues that directly impact their lives, leading to a stronger sense of inclusion. LCR presents a unique opportunity to involve people—of all backgrounds and situations—to come together with the aim of making our community a more equitable and informed place to live. We use education, entertainment, and personal stories to dissolve discrimination and disconnection, creating real community throughout the many neighborhoods our stations serve.
LCR’s journey thus far has been inspiring: community members have seen LCR’s value from the very beginning and we’re honored to put their commitment and talent to good use. Many businesses, individuals, charitable foundations, and community organizations have contributed their time and money to our cause and we’re incredibly thankful. I’m so excited to see what the next couple of years bring!
LCR's stations have a combined estimated reach of 200,000 Lexington residents. The signals of the stations reach U.S. Census tracts that are home to a great majority of Lexington’s diverse and minority population. Nearly every Census tract in the listenership is majority minority, whether it be majority African-American or majority Latino.
The listeners also represent a majority of Fayette County residents who are living at or just above the U.S. poverty threshold. There are 14 Title I Schools in the LCR listenership area. Census geography of the listenership shows that in some of the Census tracts, more than 40 percent of residents are living at or below the federal poverty threshold.
To provide hyper-local public safety updates, resource identification, etc. for every member of our community, even if they don't have access to the internet or if English is not their first language.
To broadcast crucial Department of Emergency Management and FEMA messages (in both English and Spanish) to Lexington residents who currently don’t have access to them.
To keep central Lexington safer, healthier, and more well-informed by engaging community members through entertaining and educational original radio content.
To provide an opportunity for every member of the community to share their voice over our radio waves.
To allow residents from school-aged youth to seniors to engage in local topics of interest (i.e., history, the arts, environment issues, food culture) through listening to and/or producing our stations’ content.
To increase airtime and public exposure for local musicians and artists including school musical ensembles.
To be a key force in helping residents in our communities cross the Digital Divide by providing opportunities for trainings in digital multi-media production.
To allow residents of Lexington’s underserved minority communities access to the public air waves.
To facilitate adult/youth mentorships to help youth realize future career goals and equip them with the skills necessary to pursue their desired career.
To increase community/volunteer participation in existing nonprofit work by informing volunteers of potential volunteer opportunities and connecting organizations doing similar work.
LCR engages the community through and through. From on-air to online, from neighborhood events to neighborhood news and emergency information, we rely on community volunteers to keep our programming relevant. We provide a platform for community connection, wellness, and self-expression. We do this through community meetings, trainings, and active participation in the operation of a broadcast facility.
We are creating a sustainable foundation for widespread community monetary and in-kind support through individuals, local businesses, other nonprofit organizations, charitable foundations, educators, public and private local schools, and universities.
We work to accomplish our goals through:
Programming: LCR's primary means of service is its broadcast content, which is aired 7 days a week in the basement of the Lexington STEAM Academy. LCR programming topics include:
- Public Safety (regional weather authorities, Emergency Alert System signals, traffic management, driver safety, public transportation, police and fire department updates)
News (Urban County Council sessions and public meetings, community events neighborhood association news)
- Community Education (financial education, family wellness, career and legal advice)
- Culture, Arts and Entertainment (local music shows across all genres, radio drama, poetry show)
- Public Service Announcements
Training: LCR helps make higher education and relevant technological and vocational training available to more Lexingtonians. LCR is a ready-made "lab" for students in many fields. Our partnerships with BCTC, the Lexington- Fayette County Health Department, Bluegrass Greensource, and others provide the opportunity for skill development for careers in Communications, Information Technology, Healthcare, Engineering and Business.
Website and Social Media Presence: An extension of radio broadcast, our website (lexingtoncommunityradio.org), Facebook page (Lexington Community Radio NOW) and Twitter account (@wlxlradio) serve as additional platforms for marketing, development, community engagement, and public safety messaging. It also provides us with a primary listener contact point for feedback, commentary, and new ideas from the community. The website makes us more visible in the community and reinforces updates on weather and traffic, so more Lexington residents will be able to access crucial, time-sensitive information.
A group of people from diverse backgrounds work hard to make our vision of a more informed, connected, equitable and empowered Lexington a reality. Members of our Board and Steering Committee have experience in radio, media, news, social stimulus, emergency management, fundraising, and community programs, and are connected to a wide network of committed volunteers and donors. Several members helped build WRFL, the University of Kentucky’s alternative radio station.
We have established a crucial partnership with the LFUCG Department of Emergency Management (FEMA). Our public safety goals for the community will be in collaboration with this office and its affiliates, including FEMA. Our existing partnerships with LFUCG, local nonprofits, public and private schools, universities, and churches provide us with a constant stream of volunteers and content. Underwriting, annual membership dues, and membership drives provide us with a steady cash flow. The Lexington-Fayette County Board of Health has committed $30,000 to LCR over the next three years.
In order to serve our community to the best of our ability, we must ensure that we actually reach and involve the residents we seek, that we provide high quality, credible, and engaging programming, and that our studio operations facilitate our mission. We want to know how effective our outreach efforts are and will use the following quantitative and qualitative metrics to ensure our goals are reached: Frequency counts of programs – content, initiative category (Health and Well-being, Sustainability/Stewardship, Emergency Alerts, and so forth), in English and/or Spanish.
We routinely seek qualitative feedback regarding all quantitative measures above. For instance, we provide options for individuals to respond to our programming and to their involvement with our stations and operations, and we monitor and evaluate the content of posts or call-in comments.
We have raised enough money to offset the cost of building two radio stations. The monetary and in-kind donations associated with our first year of operation were contributed by community members, nonprofit organizations, local businesses, and charitable foundations.
We completed the construction of two studios in a classroom in the STEAM Academy. We worked with local artist, John Lackey, and STEAM Academy students to produce a mural on the walls of our studios.
We created a Community & Youth Advisory Board (co-chaired by Frank X Walker and Dianet Valencia), a group of dozens of community members that will work to ensure that LCR decision-making processes stay as democratic as possible.
We have developed a programming schedule includes 36 hours of local, original airtime a week. The schedule includes weekly shows, segments, PSAs, and underwriting announcements with the help of dozens of talented and diverse community volunteers.
We've collaborated with local organizations including Just Fund KY, Bluegrass Greensource, and NoLi CDC to develop informative content. Local musicians and artists have helped us create entertaining content not heard on mainstream radio.
Indirect Public Support HelpIndirect public support represents revenue received through solicitation campaigns. This includes funding United Way and other federated fundraising organizations, but does not include donor designated contributions.
Earned Revenue HelpEarned revenue represents income generated in direct exchange for a product or service.Earned income includes income from government contracts.
Copyright © 2014 Blue Grass Community Foundation
499 East High Street, Lexington, KY 40507