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Emmanuel Baptist Temple to host dedication of Christian radio station

WHGT 1590 AM is 'a conservative, Christian format playing conservative, local church music and conservative Bible preaching and teaching'

March 12, 2011|By ROXANN MILLER | roxann.miller@herald-mail.com

The newest, local Christian radio station to hit the airwaves is finally up and running after tackling a few glitches.

"We went on the air in August, but we had a few hiccups," said Larry Aikens, general manager of WHGT 1590 AM and pastor of Emmanuel Baptist Temple on National Pike. "All the equipment we bought was brand new, and it's like getting a new car. Sometimes you have to take it in for service. But, we worked all that out, and we're at full steam."

Janice Cook of Chambersburg, Pa., was changing her radio station when she stumbled upon WHGT. She's been a devoted listener ever since.

"I have been going through some tough times, and this station has been a lifesaver," Cook said. "I listen to it sometimes 12 hours a day. Its uplifting music and messages can really lift my spirits."

After what was to be a minor surgical procedure, her husband's health declined and Cook had no choice but to place him in a nursing home. Watching him deteriorate has been difficult, she said.

"No matter how bad a day I'm having, I turn on WHGT and I feel better. I don't know what I'd do without my faith, the joyful music and positive words from that station," Cook said.

The nondenominational, Christian station beams out about 15,000 watts from dawn to dusk and is capable of reaching 9.1 million listeners.

The radio station is owned by Emmanuel Baptist Temple, but Aikens is quick to point out that the station offers programming for Christians of all denominations.

The station's two towers are located on about 11 acres off Pa. 16 on Rabbit Road in Antrim Township.

"Our station broadcasts well north of Chambersburg, south as far as Martinsburg W.Va., east as far as Frederick and west well beyond Hancock, Md.," Aikens said.

WHGT has a unique format, Aikens said.

"We are a conservative, Christian format playing conservative, local church music and conservative Bible preaching and teaching. That's why we started the station, because we felt there was a need for a more traditional format," Aikens said.

You won't hear top Christian artists like Amy Grant, Michael Smith, Starfield or Hillsong.

For those who tune into the station, Aikens said most of the programming originates from the Fundamental Broadcasting Network in North Carolina. There also is some local programming.

"Listeners are going to hear Christian music. We have about 6,000 different songs in our database. I would describe it as traditional, local church music that is professionally recorded," Aikens said.

The station's programming also includes Bible teaching and preaching.

"It's about 50 percent music and 50 percent preaching and teaching of God's word," Aikens said.

The station, which took five years to bring to reality at a cost of $680,000, is a nonprofit educational licensed station supported by its listeners.

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If you go ...

What: Dedication service to officially launch WHGT 1590 AM

When: Tuesday, 7 to 8:30 p.m.

Where: Emmanuel Baptist Temple, 16221 National Pike, Hagerstown

For more information, call 301-582-0378.

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