Phil Wilke
Kansas Public Radio

KPR wraps up spring membership drive with more than $290,000 in pledges

Tue, 05/01/2012
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LAWRENCE – Through a week of ups and downs, KPR listener-members helped bring the spring membership drive to an end with a near-record amount of pledges.

After eight days of on-air fundraising, Kansas Public Radio ended its spring membership drive with $291,770 in pledges. At 4:30 p.m. Friday, April 27, pledges from KPR listener-members pushed total donations past $290,000, the goal set to end the spring drive.

The membership drive began Tuesday, April 17, with more than $135,000 raised through a direct-mail campaign. Ten days later, more than $156,000 was raised on-air by pledges from new and renewing members.

In spring 2010, KPR set a membership drive record with $295,000 in donations.

“What a wonderful week. KPR listeners came through, again, when we needed them,” KPR Development Director Sheri Hamilton said. “We’re relying on listener contributions more and more as state funding continues to decline. KPR members continue to prove that they are willing to pay for the high-quality programming we offer day in and day out. ”

After the numbers were tallied Friday morning, more than 2,300 listeners had pledged by direct mail, on-air appeals or at KPR’s website. The overall total does not include challenge grants, in which a company or individual will donate money if KPR can raise a certain level of funding during a show. More than $35,000 was raised through challenge grants.

All donations during spring and fall membership drives directly support KPR’s local and national programming.

In each hour, KPR interrupts programming for about 10-15 minutes to ask for donations. Regular programming resumes for the rest of the hour. The membership drive featured “Super Tuesday” on Tuesday, April 17, when an entire day’s fundraising was compressed into just 90 minutes. That raised more than $29,000.

More than 100 volunteers answered phones from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. during the drive. Area restaurants donated meals and beverages for volunteers’ breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks.

KPR, licensed to the University of Kansas, broadcasts on 91.5 FM in Lawrence, 89.7 FM in Emporia, 91.3 FM in Olsburg-Junction City, 89.9 FM in Atchison, 90.3 FM in Chanute, and 99.5 FM and 97.9 FM in Manhattan. KPR can be heard on the Internet. KPR also operates KPR2, a news-talk channel on HD Radio. Those broadcasts can be heard on an HD receiver or on KPR’s website.

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