PLATTSBURGH - In what has become a tradition in the North Country, members of the Plattsburgh Noon Rotary Club and Plattsburgh Sunrise Rotary Club have joined together to take over the airwaves at Hometown Radio WIRY 1340 AM.
This year, the event will be held Wednesday, April 8, and people can tune in to hear what the Rotary does for the area as well as nationally and internationally. Most importantly, they will hear advertisements from local businesses who support their cause.
"A bunch of business folks got together 45 years ago and said ... 'Lets sell some ads on the air and try to raise money for the club projects,'" explained Steven G. Frederick, president of the Noon Rotary Club.
Aside from the hope people will understand the goal of the fundraising the Rotary provides, Frederick sees other benefits from Rotary Radio Day.
"They also get to listen to who some of the Rotarians are in Plattsburgh," he said. "There's a lot of different leaders and community folks that are members."
"Hopefully there's some good entertainment in there as well ... we make it a fun day," he added.
Between the two Rotary clubs in Plattsburgh, there are nearly 170 members who are working to get advertisements for the day, which translates to money for the many fundraisers Rotary works toward.
"We ask every member to sell at least two ads," Frederick said.
Businesses who sponsor Rotary Radio Day can either have their business name mentioned as a sponsor of an hour of radio or can have actual ads played on the radio, which for some the Rotary records themselves.
"We usually raise between the two clubs, somewhere between $12,000 to $15,000," Frederick explained. "And, we turn around and rally give that back to the community, to all the different groups we sponsor."
Some of those groups include the State University of New York at Plattsburgh and Clinton Community College for scholarships; Beartown Ski Area; Hill and Hollow Music; Literacy Volunteers of Clinton County; North Country Mission of Hope; and the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts as well as many other worthwhile causes including helping out third-world countries.
Ten percent of what Rotarians raise will go to the radio station for allowing Rotarians use of the station and airtime.
"They still run their normal programming but what they do is cut back on the amount of music that they play and just have fun and read ads on air," said Frederick.
The April 8 event will be held from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., with three different Rotarians going on-air every hour.
For more information about Rotary Radio Day, visit www.plattsburghrotary.org.