A Radio Show is Born

Some decry social media because of its abuses; I appreciate it because old friends show up now and then, Tel Elm among them. At our last connect he was a virile young guy, son of Roger and Mary Elm, founders and managers of WWJC Duluth. When his parents retired, Ted became president. A while back, the station was sold and Ted (still virile) retired with his wife Jackie to their beloved Wisconsin ranch.
Ted commented on my early broadcast post: Don’t forget your years at WWJC. Never, Ted. Here’s how it began:
Good morning! Welcome to the North Country Notebook, our weekday walk through the wonderful world of camping and the outdoors, especially with the family in mind. Lloyd Mattson talking. Here’s the beginning of the story: That’s what morning Duluth-area commuters heard on WWJC as they drove to work in the 80s. I said that at least 2,000 times.
In 1979 I returned to my home town to pastor North Shore Baptist after wandering 38 years. One spring morning, I was driving a country road, WWJC playing music for me. The trees were greening. Life was good. I got to wondering if anyone had ever put together a program series celebrating God’s creation. When I got home, I phoned that question to Roger Elm, founder and president of WWJC. He suggested we get together and talk.
I had nothing specific in mind when we met at the Upper Deck in Superior. We talked for two hours. Roger suggested I think more about it and get back to him. I doodled, recorded a cassette, took it to Roger, and the North Country Notebook was born.
Then Providence: WWJC had aired Paul Harvey at 7:45 weekday mornings, a popular show among commuters. His contract was up for renewal, but parts of the broadcast package didn’t fit WWJC and Harvey moved to a different station. Unannounced, Roger slipped me into his time slot.
Imagine the shock when commuters clicked on their radios and instead of Paul Harvey they got an unknown named Lloyd Mattson! Some of Harvey’s fans stayed with me; others showed up; and the North Country Notebook continued nine years.
More North Country Notebook stories next time.
Old Grandpa Lloyd

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