This year broadcasters, producers and listeners are planning to make National Radio Day the biggest yet. On August 20 stations around the country will broadcast special programming and hold events to celebrate this most enduring electronic medium.
Sabrina Roach, the Radio Doer for Brown Paper Tickets, has helped organize a diverse group of people to plan and spark different activities to commemorate National Radio Day. Some of these on-air events include a Radio Relay, where stations will call each other on-air across the nation, and Sonic IDs, in which stations and producers contribute short (less than a minute) audio vignettes.
The origins of this U.S. holiday have been murky. NPR first mentioned it in 2011, and it first hit my radar in 2012. HolidayInsights.com says that National Radio Day was first proposed by a group of DJs in the 1990s. It’s been suggested that August 20th was chosen because that’s the date in 1920 when Detroit’s first commercial station 8MK–now WWJ–went on the air.
Regardless of how it started, let’s all make National Radio Day 2015 a big one. Here are some suggestions:
- Spread the word on social media using the hashtag #NationalRadioDay
- Listen to a participating station
- Throw a celebration at your station
- Invite your friends over to have a National Radio Day party
- Record and contribute a Station Promo or Sonic ID (even if you don’t work at a station!)
- Donate to your favorite non-commercial station
Have some other ideas about how to celebrate? Let us know in the comments or tweet them out using the #NationalRadioDay hashtag.