92.1 MHz / 1450 kHz / 1000 kHz
Escondido/Vista, CA

I Was There:

Station Information:

Freq: 92.1 MHz
Power: 580 Watts ERP
Height/DA: 1024' AAT, 1620' AMSL
Class: A
City Of License: Escondido, CA
TX Site: Mt. Whitney, San Marcos, CA
Format: Modern Country, then Classical

Freq: 1450 kHz
Power: 1,000 Watts
Height/DA: ND-U
Class: IV
City Of License: Escondido, CA
TX Site: Near Harmony Grove, western Escondido
Format: Adult Standards

Freq: 1000 kHz
Power: 2,500 Watts Day/1,000 Watts Night
Height/DA: DA-U
Class: II
City Of License: Vista, CA
TX Site: North junction of Vista and Oceanside
Format: Business/Financial

Owner: North County Broadcasting Corp., part of Astor Broadcast Group (N. Arthur Astor, President)
GMs: Sandra Jennings, Tom Holiday, Bill Alkire, Tim Curtin,
CE: Paul Sakrison
PDs: Chris Adams, Chris McKay, John Van Zante, Al Gordon,
Engineers: Tom Howard, Dennis Holt, Michael McCabe,
Talent: Chris Adams, Chris McKay, Al Gordon, Dave Dame, Larry Ickes (tape), Clip Helps, John Hesterman, Doug Best, Jayne Bonfietti, Rod Page, Joe Jacobsen, Rick Roome, Jim Puplava, Bob Kelly, Ronnie Richards, Larry Barajas, Chris Jaynes, "Tom Henry" Howell, Jay Scott, Craig Thorley, Dave Raibourne,
Sales Geeks: Dan Deeb, Katie Brown, Becky Bade, Bill Baker, Kerry Covey, Steve Turner, Barry Cohen,
Others: Susan Burke (Exec VP), Carrie Gibbs (Traffic), Melissa Eyler (Traffic), Dave Stewart (Traffic), Laura Dame (Promotions), Cheryl Pilcher (Admin. Asst.), Becky Dominguez (Sales Asst.),
Vehicles: Chevy Van

KOW-FM/KSPA/KCEO are located in North San Diego County in California. KOW-FM and KSPA were previously known as KOWN-AM/FM and were purchased by North County Broadcasting (part of Astor Broadcast Group) in September 1987. When we took control, we changed the FM to KOW-FM, installing a Hot Country format. The AM calls were changed to KSPA and the existing Big Band format adjusted to Adult Standards, eventually automating most dayparts. KCEO was purchased from Jeff Chandler around 1994.

KSPA Control Room
with new Autogram RTV-20 console was very compact. The IGM automation controller was interfaced with the console, which allowed live, live assist and full automation modes to be easily mixed and transitioned.

KOW-FM Control Room
in Escondido was the home of The Cow for most of its life. Not much room but it worked
. Still played records in 1987, though station was working on carting up its library at this time.

KOW-FM Production Room
included two Otari MTR-10 reels, Yamaha MC2404 mixer, ITC Series 99 cart recorder, Technics SP-15 turntable.

KOW-FM Transmitter Site
at Mt. Whitney in San Marcos, CA
. The tower and antenna are to the left behind the house and the transmitter room is near the yellow panel under the main house. The house was built by Bill Putman, who resided there until 1993. One day in 1996 I watched a huge wildfire get very close to the building along with new owner Tom Collimore.

KOW-FM Transmitter
was a 500-watt Bext power amp fed by a Harris MX-15 exciter
. Very reliable, the only repair I had to make to it was to replace a bad fuseholder. Power to the site failed for 2-6 hours about 3 times per year. The City declined our permit applications for a generator.

KSPA Original Control Room
was scary

Click Here for More Pictures
KOW-FM/KSPA are licensed to Escondido, CA. The studios and offices were on the second floor of The Vineyard Shopping Center Office Tower in eastern Escondido. We replaced most of the equipment there with newer and more reliable items.

Astor acquired KCEO in a snake-oil deal with the now defunct Nationwide Communications that resulted in switching KOW-FM to a classical format and taking the KFSD calls. And when we bought KCEO, licensed to Carlsbad, we recognized the beauty of its studio/office building, which overlooked a huge natural lagoon along the coast. We proceeded to move the Escondido operation to Carlsbad. The Carlsbad location had about 80% of the space we really needed, but we made the best of the space. KCEO has a Business format, with most of the day running block programming and satellite feeds. Some of the block programs are local and live, with most of them remote feeds, but a few in studio.