In 1983, a radio station went on air that would become a Vineyard institution. A station that would eventually have global reach, a station that is A Voice for the Vineyard. Yes, we are talking about about MVYRADIO. MVYRADIO broke the mold in so many ways – playing unknown artists, having live DJ’s, featuring live concerts, a heavy focus on community, a less commercial feel and more.
For years, the station was hosted in a tiny building behind Cash & Carry in Vineyard Haven. Though small, it was mighty! When its then parent company, Aritaur, decided in 2012 to sell the 92.7 signal license but not the content, MVY launched its Save MVY Campaign. MVY became internet radio only, and then went off the air for over a year. Boy was the station missed during that time! It was as if we lost a part of the soul of the Vineyard.
In 2014, it was back on air, as 88.7. The Island let out a collective sigh of relief. The station was now an independent, listener-supported, 501c3 non-profit. It was back with its Vineyard Vibe and continued playing in true MVY fashion – playing eclectic, lesser known artists and being A Voice for the Vineyard.
MVY Listener Supported Radio – Radio for Martha’s Vineyard and One of the World-First Stations to Stream
Did you know that MVY was one of the first broadcast radio stations to stream? I had no idea! Though streaming and of course the fact that it is on the Vineyard, it has a sizable global presence. This is huge for listener supported radio. Not only were people from the Cape and Islands helping support the station, but people from all over the world.
MVYRADIO is a platform for information, for great music and of course some of the best DJs around. People have a stake in the success of the station. It is interwoven in their daily lives. Music is such an important part of so many people’s lives, their well-being.
MVY Listener Supported Radio – Radio for Martha’s Vineyard – The Soul of the Station
At MVYRADIO, almost all the DJs and staff have been at the station for 15 – 20 years. PJ Finn, the Executive Director and the host of the Lunch Hour, has been at MVY since 2000. Laurel Redington, one of our community favorites, The Vineyard Current, has been at MVY since 1991. Shawn Taylor, overnights and Sundays, has been at MVY since 1987! Can you imagine the experiences that Shawn has had during her career at MVY? Think Hot Tin Roof, oodles of live music on the Island and celebs! These are just a couple of the amazing DJs at MVY.
There is something to say when DJs and staff stay at a station so long. Just like listeners are invested, so are they. The MVY team is a family – through thick and thin. Over time, listeners find their favorites and are just as dedicated.
COIVD changed people’s listening habits of the station. People tuned into MVY more than ever before. MVY provided music, joy, companionship, a way to stay connected, a way to stay current with events on and off Island. The station’s listenership grew and grew. MVY was a saving grace for so many.
MVY Listener Supported Radio – Radio for Martha’s Vineyard Gets a New Home
MVY had so many great achievements while at their home in Vineyard Haven. However, they had definitely outgrown the space (long ago). The station, as listener supported radio, began a Capital Campaign for its new home which would be West Tisbury.
In June of 2021, the team moved into the new home of MVYRADIO. They could not be happier! There is room for people when visiting. They have spacious, state of the art studios for their shows, a space to hold intimate musical gatherings and so much more. You can find the new MVY on State Road in West Tisbury, next to the Post Office and Cronigs.
In 2018, Karen Altieri became the Director of Development at MVYRADIO Martha’s Vineyard & The World. She was tasked with raising the $2.5 million dollars need for the station’s new home.
Through a pandemic, she, along with a dedicated board who helped with fundraising and financial support, were able to raise almost the entire amount! How incredible is that?!? They are less than $75,000 away from that goal. With a ribbon-cutting ceremony coming this Summer, I am pretty certain that they will meet and beat that goal.
As a community supported station – surviving with grants, donations, and sponsorships, people are invested in MVY’s success. We’ve seen a world without the Vineyard Voice and it’s not as pretty.
It is fitting that we have such a special radio station, a station that leads with heart, call Martha’s Vineyard home, but with a global audience. This Island is special in so many ways. So, tune in to 88.7 and enjoy! If you’d like to donate to MVYRADIO click here. Don’t forget to check out their great swag too!
Thanks for reading On Point MV. Also be sure to check out We Love MV our ON POINT MV Blog series capturing the spirit of Martha’s Vineyard year-round. We hope you are staying safe during these times. Please don’t forget to “Like” Point B Realty on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter, Linked In, Pinterest, Youtube and Instagram.
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