Media Bridges to launch FM station, Radio Free Queen City

One of Cincinnati’s great unique assets is Media Bridges, our community media center. The non-profit organization operates four of the city’s public access television channels and broadcasts an Internet radio station, The Bridge.

Beginning August 1, Media Bridges will be adding yet another outlet as they launch Radio Free Queen City. This new low-power station, officially known as WVQC-LP, will broadcast on 95.7 FM. It will feature content produced by volunteers, focusing on issues, arts, and culture relevant to the community. The station will air city council meetings, some alternative national programming, and Spanish-language news. Media Bridges says WVQC will not duplicate the programming of other Cincinnati-area stations.

Media Bridges first applied for a license to operate an FM station in 2001, and the FCC granted the license last year. A campaign has been launched to raise the $127,000 needed to purchase the transmitter, build a new radio studio at Media Bridges’ Over-the-Rhine location, and fund the station’s first year of operation. Once operational, the FM signal will cover a 3-5 mile radius, and will presumably be streamed online for those outside the core of the city.

Cincinnati is currently served by another non-profit volunteer radio station, the East Walnut Hills-based WAIF, which has been surrounded by controversy in recent years.

Additional reading:
Radio tower photo courtesy of Flickr user maliciousmonkey.

Back soon…

Sorry about the lack of articles lately. I have been traveling all over Greece and haven’t had the time or internet connection to write new content. I’ll be back in Cincinnati April 6th with lots of new stuff then, but in the mean time just bear with me.

Just to make you jealous. Here was the view from my front porch in Oia for the past week on the Greek island of Santorini.

Breakfast spot for the past week outside of my room in Oia…the island of Thirisia is seen in this photo.

Looking from my room out over the rest of Oia

Dog Parks Can Improve Livability of Cincinnati’s Urban Neighborhoods

The Trust for Public Land recently ranked the nation’s largest cities based on the number of dog parks available to their residents. Cincinnati fared well, coming in at #15 with 1.2 dog parks per 100,000 residents (73kb PDF) out of the 75 total cities examined.

Dog parks provide dog owners living in the city a spot where they can bring their canine friend to do their business. A secondary, and equally important, role to dog parks is the social component. Dogs and their owners alike often use their trips to the dog park as a way to socialize and interact with other dogs and owners.

This social component provides that always desired community feel as people become bonded to their neighbors through shared experiences. In the city, it also puts more “eyes on the street,” and creates a sense of vibrancy that might not be there if the owners kept themselves and their dogs cooped up inside their urban dwelling unit.

A rather large example of a good urban dog park in NYC – Source

So while Cincinnati fares well with the overall dog parks per 100,000 residents analysis, it fails in the very neighborhoods that dog parks would provide this dual benefit. Aside from the Pet Athletic Club, there is no dedicated spot for residents of Downtown, Over-the-Rhine or the West End to take their dogs. These neighborhoods are the most lacking in private yard space and need these kinds of parks to make urban living possible for the slews of dog owners out there.

There is hope though as a dog park is planned for the northern portion of Washington Park as part of its ensuing renovation/expansion. This will be a great asset for the residents of Over-the-Rhine and even those living in the northern parts of Downtown, but how about the many people living in the “Soapbox District” or over near Lytle Park?

Well there was a movement that surfaced about as quickly as it went away for a Downtown dog park. City Manager Milton Dohoney got a group of stakeholders together to study the issue with pledged support from the Downtown Residents Council. The effort, however, has been stalled indefinitely as the associated construction and maintenance costs appeared to be too cumbersome.

Please share any thoughts or ideas you may have about how to go about implementing a small dog park in Downtown Cincinnati. A donated piece of land, volunteer service and ideas about how to set up some sort of dog park endowment would be especially helpful in developing a dog park.

Vote now for HYPE Up Cincinnati competition

The Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber of Commerce has opened up voting for their HYPE Up Cincinnati online video competition. The winners will be announced March 26th at the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber’s annual young professional summit, Bold Fusion, being held at the Aronoff Center.

In addition to a bunch of great prizes, the top videos will have their videos played on the video board overlooking Fountain Square during the Taste of Cincinnati and Oktoberfest. Voting is open until Tuesday, March 24th.

The video competition is meant to give Cincinnatians an avenue to create a video that highlights the things they love about Cincinnati.

Be sure to check out the entry from Brianne Fahey (Live Green Cincinnati) – “Ode to Oktoberfest – I Drink Beer”

Swoon performing at Below Zero

Swoon will be performing at Below Zero Lounge on Saturday, March 28th from 7pm-10pm as part of a fundraiser for the Cincinnati Chapter of PFLAG.

PFLAG is “the nation’s foremost family-based organization committed to the civil rights of gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgender persons.” Boasting over 200,000 members and supporters in more than 500 chapters, PFLAG also offers scholarships for gay and straight-ally students who strive to make the world a better place for gay and lesbian people through support, education and advocacy.

The performance at Below Zero (GoogleMap) is meant to raise money for this scholarship program. Swoon is a local band that got their start in the U.K. They are a blend of pop, folk and punk style music. Tickets are $25 per person or $45 for couples. Light refreshments and a cash bar will be available in addition to several prizes for attendees.

If you wish to purchase tickets you can do so by sending a check payable to PFLAG Cincinnati, P.O. Box 19634, Cincinnati, OH 45219-0634. You can contact Suzanne at (513) 240-1193 or info[at]pflagcinci[dot]org with any questions.

If you’re on Facebook, RSVP on the event page.