Erie, Pennsylvania – Ontario Hockey League Preseason action officially starts tonight, as the Erie Otters host the first game of the 2022-23 season. With great anticipation of a season planned to be one of the biggest in organization history, the first game night of the season features two, all-new programs for the team.
Tonight’s game will be the debut of the Otters’ College Radio Kickoff initiative – the catalyst of the team’s Elevate Voices Program. This initiative allowed for college radio stations to have the opportunity to broadcast an Erie Otters preseason game with its students, and be the ‘Radio Home’ of the team for a night. The initiative’s kickoff is lead by neighboring Gannon University, and its student-run 90.5 WERG – which celebrated its 50th Anniversary as a Radio Station in 2022.
An Alternative Rock station primarily, 90.5 WERG also doubles as the home for Gannon Athletics broadcasts and the home for Erie’s only live-and-local sports talk show, The Prime Time Sports Guys. WERG has collaborated with the Erie Otters frequently over the years – from ticket giveaways, to live interviews with players and staff, and programming specific to the organization.
Leading the charge for WERG’s efforts to submit for the College Radio Kickoff initiative were the station’s Student General Manager Trevor Kubeja – who will have the call for WERG – and Operations Manager Chester LaPrice.
“My students are thrilled with the opportunity to broadcast Ontario Hockey League preseason action on 90.5 WERG. This offers them an invaluable portfolio-building experience as burgeoning professional broadcasters. It is also a way for them to engage their leadership skills in a practical learning environment.” said LaPrice,“Thanks to the Erie Otters and the entire OHL for providing this extraordinary moment for Gannon University. The Erie Otters host the Hamilton Bulldogs at Erie Insurance Arena on Friday evening at 7 P.M., and you Otter be listening to 90.5 WERG!”
Voice of the Otters Shawn Bednard – who will join Kubeja during the pregame show and throughout the broadcast – expressed great joy in extending the opportunity to WERG.
“WERG is one of the most celebrated student radio stations in the country, winning innumerous awards from Intercollegiate Broadcasting System during its tenure and having alumni working in the professional broadcasting ranks. College Radio is a critical part of developing the next generation of broadcast leaders, and WERG has shown proficiency in doing so over the last half-century.” said Bednard, “It’s a thrill to have such a prestigious college station right next door, and I’m ecstatic to hear what the WERG team brings on the airwaves as the inaugural member of our College Radio Kickoff.”
Fans can listen to tonight’s game on 90.5 FM in Erie County, or worldwide on the station’s website, WERGFM.com.
This will not be the only way for fans to engage tonight’s preseason game, however, as the game will also be televised by Otters’ non-profit partner, Community Access Media. In celebration of local broadcast organization collaboration, Community Access Media & WERG 90.5 will combine efforts to create a full video/audio broadcast experience for fans.
Community Access Media, or CAM, has been serving the media and technology needs of Erie County for 25 years through training courses, access to broadcast equipment, and a comprehensive educational center. Authorized by the City of Erie to administer the public access media channel, CAM covers everything from Erie-centric events like the Blues and Jazz Festival or CelebrateErie, to local government programming. CAM can be viewed on Spectrum Cable’s Channel 1021 and VNET Fiber Channel 2, as well as streaming On-Demand on Apple TV and Roku Apps, or on their website CAMErie.org.
“The Erie Otters are truly honored to have our preseason contest against Hamilton broadcast live all across Erie by Community Access Media. Executive Director Jacob Jones, Production Coordinator Branden Montgomery, and the whole team at CAM have been a terrific partner to the Otters and our Media Team, and I can’t wait to see the Otters back on the television airwaves.” said Bednard, “We are thankful for such a terrific community media partner like CAM, and can’t wait for our fans to see the work they do – and the work we’ll be doing together in the future!”
Attendees of the Friday night contest can learn more about programs and opportunities with Community Access Media at the organization’s concourse table.
Puck Drop from the Erie Insurance Arena is slated for 7:00 P.M. between the Erie Otters and reigning OHL Champion Hamilton Bulldogs in the first game of the league’s preseason. Tickets are on-sale now for the contest at $10 per person, or at $24 for all three of the weekend’s games. Ticket information and purchasing options can be found at OttersHockey.com.
For the latest Otters news, visit OttersHockey.com, or follow the team on Facebook (Facebook.com/erieottershockey), Twitter (@ErieOtters), and Instagram (@ErieOtters).
For further information on the Erie Otters and for media inquiries, please contact Shawn Bednard at email@example.com.