ABOUT WGHT Radio
On September 14, 1964, WGHT signed on as WKER, call letters for the founder, Bob Kerr. WKER served as a test market station for radio stations like 77-WABC in the 1960s. The station initially ran a contemporary MOR format that evolved to a full-service adult contemporary format. The station was strictly a daytimer signing on at dawn and signing off at dusk. In early 1993, Bob Kerr’s estate sold the radio station to John Silliman, formerly an on-air personality at various other radio stations over the years. Upon taking ownership, Silliman applied for a call sign change to WGHT (which stands for “Great Hits”). This application was accepted by the FCC on August 6, 1993.
WGHT broadcast an oldies-classic hits music format playing a deep and wide variety of music from 1952 to about 2000. Recent WGHT personnel included midday air personality as well as general manager Silliman and program director Jimmy Howes. Howes was also WGHT’s chief engineer and operations manager. WGHT’s News Director was award-winning reporter and newscaster Mike Forte. The station had a cult following in terms of and a professional staff. The station won quite a few awards for their programming. Eventually WGHT had from the FCC a pre-sunrise authorization to sign on at 6:00 a.m. even during the months the sun rose after and a post-sunset authorization for 6:00 p.m. during the months sunset happened earlier. In the last year WGHT would still sign off at 6:00 p.m. even in the summer months when the station could remain on the air as late as 8:30 p.m.
As with many AM radio stations, selling advertising was becoming difficult. Getting a low-power FM translator was looked into but ultimately rejected by ownership. Also, options such as brokering the station various times of the day were looked at and it was determined that if the station could not be live and local with the programming local people are used to it would be better to just close the station down. In June, it was announced that WGHT would close late in the summer or in the fall. On September 22, 2017, Mariana Broadcasting filed an application with the FCC for consent to transfer ownership of WGHT as part of a donation to the Borough of Pompton Lakes. Pompton Lakes does not plan on operating the station and is looking for a partner to run it. On December 15, 2017, ownership was transferred and the station went silent. Silliman conducted the signoff.
In Spring 2019, Frank Truatt, owner of 1110 WTBQ/93.5 W228CG in Warwick, New York, begin operating WGHT under a Local Marketing Agreement with the option to purchase the station and its construction permit for 98.3 W252ED. WGHT will temporarily simulcast programming from WTBQ/W228CG while local programs are being developed.
On May 7, 2020 history was made in North Jersey, WGHT 98.3 FM was turned on and it is the first station in North Jersey to have an FM! Tune in 24/7 and Monday evenings at 6pm to 8pm call and request our favorite 70’s song with your favorite D.J., ….FST!