by Tyler Stewart
If there’s one group that really knows how to put the fun in fundraising, it’s CKXU.
Broadcasting from the University of Lethbridge, this campus-community radio station is about to grow quickly with a planned signal upgrade to their FM broadcast range. During a week of events for their annual FUNdrive, they’re looking to the community for help to raise the final project funds.
CKXU continues fundraising to upgrade FM broadcast range.
“This is the third installment of our signal increase push,” explains station manager Aaron Trozzo. “In 2014 we did ‘Boost the Signal’, 2015 was ‘Power the Tower’ and this year’s theme is ‘Fund the Frequency.’”
For the past decade or so, CKXU’s annual fundraiser has helped provide operating dollars to keep the station afloat, but the bulk of this year’s funds will go towards completion of the signal upgrade project.
“Since 2005 we’ve broadcast at 100 watts from a beanpole located on the top of the student’s union building,” Aaron laughs. “That equipment has been incredibly reliable, so we’ve had really good luck and been able to do some fantastic things with our current reach.”
The signal upgrade will represent an increase of 30 times the broadcast power, making CKXU 88.3FM available outside Lethbridge city limits for the first time.
“A boost to the new signal strength of 3,000 watts will be huge for us,” Aaron says. “This will get us out to Fort Macleod and surrounding area, plus further in all directions to reach a broader audience.”
In order to make this signal upgrade dream into reality, the station aims to raise $30,000 this year, a lofty goal. However, they did shatter previous fundraising records by raising $22,500 last year, their best to date.
“We have secured a number of matching grants through the city and the province,” Aaron says, “So we’re coming up with the final push towards securing our remaining funds for the overall project cost, which will total $140,000.”
It’s called campus-community radio for a reason, and CKXU is forging new partnerships across the city to help them raise awareness.
“With this year’s fund drive we’re really trying to reach out to groups that we don’t currently represent enough,” Aaron explains. “With a larger broadcast range, this also means we have a greater opportunity to connect with new audiences.
Their partnership with the Boys and Girls Club will see the Tuneful Tangle – a battle of the bands featuring the best youth talent Lethbridge has to offer, while the YMCA will play host to the annual Cupcake Carnival.
For the full listing of CKXU FUNdrive events happening March 18-25, visit www.ckxu.com.