Believe it or not, radio needs electricity to exist. When the power outages hit Knox County at the beginning of February WNZR should have had back up generators to stay on the air. Well, sure enough, the generators were iced over and didn’t start automatically. This is where our timeline begins………………….
11:40pm- Heather Kay leaves the station (which was still on the air)
11:52pm- The station loses power, back-up generators don’t kick on
11:54pm- Heather Kay returns to her appartment to find the station she left mere moments ago is now off air, she calls Marcy Rinehart, station manager.
11:58pm- Marcy calls Jayme McMillan, Sam Dye, and Derek Tupper to go up to the station and see what the problem is.
12:06am- After stumbling down a dark hallway to Sam and Derek’s room and getting ready to head out into the ice storm I(Jayme) realize that I have put on brown dress shoes and not tennis shoes like I thought.
12:10am- The three of us leave for the station walking up hill in an inch of ice the entire way.
12:14am- Sam nearly falls, he throws his arms in the air to regain his balance and accidentally punches Derek in the face. (hilariously painful for him)
12:20am- We get the generator going at the station and find out the problem is actually at the generator at our radio tower.
12:25am- Joe Rinehart leaves his home (and warm bed) to deliver the keys to the tower generator to the three of us. One of us has to stay behind at the studio and confirm when we are back on air. We draw straws, Derek loses and is in for a boring couple of hours.
12:31am- Joe arrives on campus and picks up Sam and I, we head out to the tower site.
12:40am- we finally arrive at the tower and begin the long hike through the snow and ice from the parking lot to the tower about 200 meters away.
12:46am- We arrive at the tower, Joe falls in the snow (also hilarious) and has to get up on his own for fear of dragging one of us down with him.
1:00am- we finally get the generator going and are back on the air, then we realize the generator is low on oil. We stop the generator, go back off the air, and walk back to the car 200 meters away.
1:08am- We get back to the car and drive to the gas station to pick up some oil.
1:20am- We get to the gas station, buy oil and head back to the tower site.
1:34am- We get back to the tower, hike back out the 200 meters.
1:40am- We get to the tower and put the oil in and fire it up again.
1:50am-The station is finally back on the air, so, of course we walk all the way back to the car to head home.
2:01am- We get back to the car, my brown dress shoes are ruined……
2:30am- Finally, we go back to bed.
The evening was alot of fun, but very tiring. Also, the next day I discovered that 90% of my clothing was in the washer, locked, since there was no power…..I lived off of 1 pair of pants and a pair of socks for 2 days. Still, I wouldn’t trade the memory for the world (or an extra pair of socks)