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WDEL Radio celebrating 100th Anniversary

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WILMINGTON – WDEL, a news and talk radio licensed in Delaware, and owned by Forever Media, will be celebrating the upcoming 100th anniversary of its first broadcast.

On July 22nd, 2022, WDEL signed on as WHAV from the home of Willard Wilson. It was the first radio station in Delaware and one of the first one hundred in the United States. Wilson owned Wilmington Electrical Specialty Company and, later, started the radio station to sell radios and other electrical items. In 1926, the call letters were changed to WDEL.

Among its milestones, WDEL was one of the first radio affiliates of a major league baseball team, broadcasting Philadelphia A’s games. WDEL was also the first radio station in Delaware to provide locally produced, on-the-road traffic reports.

Over the years, WDEL has been honored by the National Association of Broadcasters with its Marconi Award for Medium Market Station of the Year, has twice been honored with the national Edward R. Murrow Award for Overall Excellence, has been named News Operation of the Year by the Chesapeake AP Broadcasters Association several times, and has won the NAB’s prestigious Crystal Award for public service.

WDEL will be celebrating its anniversary by airing special vignettes and interviews leading up to the 100th-anniversary date.

WDEL.com will feature a special page of historical pictures and special podcasts.

“It has been an honor to talk to long-time employees of WDEL about the history of the radio station and its role in Delaware,” said Chris Carl, WDEL’s Director of News & Programming, who is producing WDEL’s on-air celebration. “We look forward to sharing these memories with our listeners as we continue to provide them with the important information they need to know today.”

An open house is planned for July 22nd, 2022. The public, dignitaries, and special guests will be able to tour the studios and watch and participate in live broadcasts.

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