From WRFI General Manager Felix Teitelbaum:

“This Friday, November 7th, come to WRFI’s radio open house as we report LIVE from Gallery Night in Press Bay Alley!

Ithaca’s only community radio station is celebrating it’s second year of live local programming and kicking off the final weekend of our annual fund drive. Come see live, local radio being made, meet some of the great people making it happen and get involved!

While you’re in the Alley, check out the Ithaca Generator’s Laser Cut Design Studio too!”

Ithaca, N.Y. — WRFI Community Radio in Ithaca is holding a fundraising drive that is set to end on Sunday.

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Soon reaching its third year of operations, WRFI was run by volunteers until September — when it hired Felix Teitelbaum as its first General Manager.

“Our staff has already accomplished so much and brings a lot of great energy to the station. We just need to direct all that energy and then the sky really is the limit,” Teitelbaum said in a news release.

Last year’s fundraising drive brought in $13,000 from more than 200 donors.

That, coupled with money from the Park Foundation, has allowed “continued growth and burgeoning community support,” a WRFI press release said.


Here’s some more background on WRFI community radio:

“By almost any measure, WRFI’s growth has been explosive. Prior to mid-2012, Ithaca Community Radio—WRFI’s parent organization—was only able to re-broadcast the signals of other radio stations (initially WEOS-Geneva, and, later, WSQX-Binghamton) on its Ithaca-area translator. In June 2012, WRFI began broadcasting its own program stream in Watkins Glen and Ithaca. WRFI’s first control room consisted of a rudimentary 8-channel mixer on a donated office table, two computers and a small stack of electronic equipment. Many key items in WRFI’s signal chain were lent by friends of the station.

By early December 2012, just in time for WRFI’s first on-air fundraising marathon, station volunteers completed Studio A (the Kenny Ritter Studio) and reconditioned and installed a donated vintage broadcast console—most recently stored in a Tompkins County barn. The station then began a crash program of recruiting, training, and scheduling local program hosts and DJs, and embarked on a series of substantial improvements to its broadcast infrastructure.

Jeff Stein is the founder and former editor of the Ithaca Voice.