WERQ stays on top of its game

Radio: The station keeps its first-place ranking this quarter, but the runners-up find themselves in new positions.

Radio and Television

May 03, 2000|By Chris Kaltenbach | Chris Kaltenbach,SUN STAFF

WERQ-FM (92.3) remains the king of Baltimore's radio ratings, but its court was rearranged a little over the first three months of 2000.

Second place for the quarter went to WPOC-FM (93.1), which climbed 1.1 share points over its fall 1999 position, adding almost 4,000 listeners in an average quarter-hour. WBAL-AM (1090) finished third, its numbers unchanged from fall 1999, while WWIN-FM (95.9) dropped from second to fourth, losing seven-tenths of a share point and roughly 2,400 listeners in an average quarter-hour.

WPOC received even more good news with its morning drive-time numbers, where Laurie DeYoung overtook perennial champion Rouse and Co. on WQSR-FM (105.7) for first place among listeners 25-54 years old. WERQ finished third.

Among all morning listeners, WBAL finished first, by half a share point over WERQ and six-tenths of a point over WPOC.

Here are the Arbitron ratings and audience shares for listeners 12 and older for Baltimore's top 10 radio stations. Each share point represents about 3,600 listeners in an average quarter-hour.

1) WERQ-FM (92.3), 10.1

2) WPOC-FM (93.1), 7.5

3) WBAL-AM (1090), 6.1

4) WWIN-FM (95.9), 5.7

5) WLIF-FM (101.9), 5.3

6) WQSR-FM (105.7), 5.0

7) WWMX-FM (106.5), 5.0

8) WXYV-FM (102.7), 4.0

9) WIYY-FM (97.9), 3.8

10) WCAO-AM (600), 3.5

Keep killing Kenny

Looks like we're going to have "South Park" to kick around for a few more years. Thank goodness.

Series creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone recently signed an agreement with Comedy Central to produce at least 30 new episodes of "South Park" over the next three years, or at least 10 a year. In addition, the duo will supply a new series for 2001.

No word on precisely what this augurs for the unfortunate Kenny. One expects he will continue to die violent and ugly deaths throughout the show's run.

Kids' choice

With ABC's kid-friendly Friday-night lineup expected to be ditched at the end of this season -- "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch" has already announced it will jump ship to WB -- cable's Nickelodeon channel has announced plans to expand its own youth-oriented lineup.

Beginning Sept. 15, Nickelodeon will take an hourlong chunk out of its Friday "Nick at Nite" reruns and replace it with kids' shows. So instead of reruns like "The Brady Bunch" and "The Beverly Hillbillies," Nickelodeon will provide more episodes of original programming, such as "Rocket Power" and "Nick Toons." No word yet on exactly which shows will be added.

Also, beginning Sept. 11, "Nick at Nite" will program "family-friendly" reruns into the 8: 30 p.m.-9 p.m. time-slot Monday through Thursday. Initially, that slot will be filled with "The Facts of Life."

Patti named Headliner

Reporter John Patti of WBAL-AM (1090) recently was awarded a pair of National Headliner Awards -- one for Investigative Reporting, the other for Feature Reporting.

In the former category, Patti was cited for "Your Drugs -- Make No Mistake," a look at the increase in pharmacy errors in Maryland. In features, Patti was honored for "Magoo Golf," a look at golfers who use area courses at night.

The awards, presented since 1934 by the Press Club of Atlantic City, will be handed out Friday.

Lava exploration

CNBC's weekend presentations of "National Geographic Explorer" include a premiere segment Sunday that takes viewers inside one of the world's most active volcanoes.

"Into the Volcano," scheduled for 8 p.m. Sunday (with a repeat at 8 p.m. May 13) chronicles an expedition by photographer Carsten Peter and volcanologist Haraldur Sigurdsson inside a caldera on Ambrym Island in the South Pacific.

The seven-mile-wide caldera is home to four active craters and was formed around 50 A.D. by an explosion estimated to have been 10 times more powerful than the one that blew the top off Washington state's Mount St. Helens 20 years ago.

"National Geographic Explorer" airs on CNBC at 8 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Films on small screen

A handful of the features showcased at last weekend's Maryland Film Festival already are slated to appear on TV this year, including "King Gimp" on HBO June 5 and "The Fall of Newt Gingrich" on PBS in August.

Another film, director Andrew Garrison's charming "The Wilgus Stories," adapted from the short stories of Gurney Norman, will be distributed by the Independent Television Service later this year and could be picked up by local PBS stations. MPT programming head Zvi Shoubin says film isn't on his radar screen yet, but he's open to suggestions. So if you saw the film over the weekend and want to ensure that others have the same opportunity, you know who to contact: MPT at 410-356-5600.

TV's top shows Here are last week's top TV shows, according to A. C. Nielsen Co. figures:

Rating

1 ER NBC 19.6

2 Who Wants to be a Millionaire, Tues ABC 17.0

3 Who Wants to be a Millionaire, Thurs. ABC 16.0

4 Friends NBC 14.7

5 Frasier NBC 14.4

6 Frasier NBC 13.0

6 (tie) Who Wants to be a Millionaire, Sun. ABC 13.0

8 Just Shoot Me NBC 12.9

9 Law & Order NBC 12.8

10 Touched by an Angel CBS 11.8

11 The Practice ABC 11.6.0

12 CBS Sunday Movie: Take Me Home: The John Denver Story CBS 11.5

13 ABC Premiere Event: Arabian Nights, Part 1 ABC 11.2

14 ABC Monday Night Movie: Three Stooges ABC 10.6

15 Dateline Friday NBC 9.8

15 (tie) Everybody Loves Raymond CBS 9.8

15 The West Wing NBC 9.8

18 Becker CBS 9.4

18 (tie) Law & Order: Special Victims Unit NBC 9.4

18 (tie) Providence NBC 9.4

The rating is the percentage of homes equipped with a TV in use.

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