Robservations: StreetWise raises cover price; Sventoonie takes a break; Friends of Chicago Reporter mark 50

StreetWise Chicago

Robservations on the media beat:

StreetWise, the nonprofit weekly magazine spotlighting homelessness, poverty, injustice, inequality and life in Chicago, raised its cover price Monday to $3. The one-dollar increase was the first in almost 15 years and the third in the publication’s 30-year history. StreetWise’s 111 vendors — mostly homeless men and women — will get a 75-cent raise to $1.85 per issue. “Given the inflationary pressures of producing a weekly news magazine and customers’ desire to help the homeless, nearly all stakeholders supported this decision,” Julie Youngquist, executive director of StreetWise, said in a statement. Continue reading

CBS 2 to restore jumbotron, street-front studio overlooking Daley Plaza

CBS 2 Chicago, 22 West Washington Street

It’s been years since WBBM-Channel 2 dismantled the giant video screen outside its Loop studios overlooking Daley Plaza. But soon it will be back — bigger and better than ever.

Construction is underway on a new jumbotron monitor along the western exterior of the CBS Broadcast Center at 22 West Washington Street.

“If all goes according to plan, we look for the sign to be fully operational by mid to late August,” said Jennifer Lyons, president and general manager of the CBS-owned station. “Our 24/7 local news stream, CBS News Chicago, will be the content on the monitor.” Continue reading

Robservations: Chicago Tribune may roll presses in Milwaukee; Leila Gorstein leaving MeTV; Lucky 13 inspires Steve Darnall

Chicago Tribune Freedom Center

Robservations on the media beat:

By this time next year the print edition of the Chicago Tribune may be coming from Wisconsin. Under Alden Global Capital ownership, the sadly diminished daily is expected to be printed on the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s former presses in West Milwaukee — 90 miles from the Loop. Gannett produced 11 Wisconsin newspapers from the site before moving them last month to the Peoria Journal Star. Gannett merged with GateHouse Media, the Journal Star’s parent company, in 2019. Freedom Center, the Tribune’s printing plant (and current newsroom) at Chicago Avenue and the Chicago River, has been sold to Bally’s for development of a casino. Sources said the Tribune could begin production from the 20-year-old Milwaukee plant by mid-2023. Par Ridder, general manager of Chicago Tribune Media Group, did not respond to a request for comment. Continue reading

CBS 2 castoffs Erin Kennedy, Megan Glaros pull back curtain on TV news

Erin Kennedy and Megan Glaros

For years two of the brightest morning stars on WBBM-Channel 2 were news anchor Erin Kennedy and meteorologist Megan Glaros. But in 2020 their careers were cut short when the two were among more than a dozen staffers ousted in sweeping layoffs at the CBS-owned station.

Now Kennedy and Glaros are back in the spotlight with their own show on YouTube. While careful to abide by their nondisclosure agreements with CBS, both have plenty to say about the inner workings of the TV news business. Continue reading

Robservations: Broadcast museum celebrates rock radio; WGN Radio to sell piece of transmitter site; ABC 7 hosts Juneteenth special

John Records Landecker

Robservations on the media beat:

Museum of Broadcast Communications

Legendary DJs John Records Landecker and Tommy Edwards will reminisce about the golden age of rock radio when they headline a fundraiser for Chicago’s Museum of Broadcast Communications August 14. “Rock Radio Revisited” will be hosted by Wendy Snyder at Ron Onesti’s Des Plaines Theater. (Here is the link for tickets.) Also appearing, according to the museum, will be Kris Erik Stevens, Bob Stroud, Connie Szerszen, Steve King, Gary Burbank, Cousin Brucie Morrow and Dyana Williams. “The heyday of rock radio in the ’60s and ’70s was centered around the booming personalities of DJs like Larry Lujack, John Records Landecker, Yvonne Daniels, Bob Sirott and Steve King,” David Plier, chairperson of the museum board, said in a statement. “Every city had their favorite local radio station and the voices behind them. This will be an incredible celebration of the personalities and music that made that era of rock and roll so memorable.” Continue reading

The Score unites Dan Bernstein and Laurence Holmes as midday co-hosts

Dan Bernstein and Laurence Holmes

Longtime Chicago sports talk hosts Dan Bernstein and Laurence Holmes are teaming up to co-host a new four-hour midday show on WSCR 670-AM, the Audacy sports/talk station announced Thursday.

Starting Monday, “Bernstein and Holmes” will air from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays. As part of the new schedule, the morning show with Mike Mulligan and David Haugh will move into the 9 a.m. hour, airing from 5:30 to 10 a.m. Continue reading

Bob Stroud, Kevin Matthews on 2022 Radio Hall of Fame ballot

Bob Stroud and Kevin Matthews

Chicago radio veterans Bob Stroud and Kevin Matthews are among 24 nominees for induction to the Radio Hall of Fame, the Chicago-based shrine to radio’s greatest performers and programs announced Monday.

Stroud, who’s on the ballot for the third time, disclosed last week he was stepping down as top-rated midday personality at WDRV 97.1-FM, the Hubbard Radio classic rock station where he’s spent the last 21 of his 43 years in radio.

Matthews, a first-time nominee, spent 18 years on Chicago radio, including a 12-year run as a mainstay of the former WLUP AM and FM. Since 2008, when he was diagnosed with a rare type of multiple sclerosis, Matthews has been living in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Continue reading

Chicago radio ratings: On eve of retirement, Bob Stroud leads The Drive to No. 1

The Drive 97.1

Talk about going out on top.

In the run-up to his announced retirement from WDRV 97.1-FM, legendary midday personality Bob Stroud led the Hubbard Radio classic rock station to No. 1 in Chicago radio ratings released Monday.

Nielsen Audio figures for May showed The Drive in first place overall, first in middays with Stroud, and first in afternoons with Steve Seaver and Janda Lane. Continue reading