Thanks to generous listeners, MIX 101.5 knocked the top out of their 2017 Radiothon vision. The event took place in December for the first time this year, and the holiday spirit paid off. The 23rd Annual MIX 101.5 Radiothon for Duke Children’s Hospital raised $656,089! The WRAL-FM team unveiled the big check at the conclusion of the two-day on-air event on Thursday, December 14th.
WRAL-FM Program Director Michele Williams says holding Radiothon during December for the first time turned out to be a good move.
“It’s a season when people are focused on families and community, which is what Radiothon is all about,” she said.
The MIX team set goals for each hour during Radiothon and reached every single goal. That response from listeners created a great feeling in the Duke Children’s Hospital lobby where volunteers manned the phone bank and MIX staffers interviewed patients, their families and Duke staffers on air.
“The perspective that Radiothon gave us is IRREPLACEABLE,” said WRAL-FM’s Bryan Lord of Two Men & a Mom. “We witnessed so much strength, courage and hope from the patients and their families. It’s inspiring. Thursday night our team walked out of Duke Children’s Hospital as better people.”
Lord got to talk to one of WRAL-FM’s favorite Radiothon mainstays. He was inspired by the reaction of listeners to a very special young man:
“Jake the Jokeman is a young man that brings smiles to everyone he meets,” explained Lord. “Many know Jake and even carry copies of his popular joke books! At 15 months-old he was treated for a malignant brain tumor. Since then he’s been a regular at Duke Children’s Hospital. Now 16 years-old, he joined us on-air with one goal…make people laugh. He did that. A lot. And after gifting all of us copies of his NEWEST joke book (complete with illustrations), he got a bright idea! He asked us if it’d be ‘ok’ to sign copies of his joke book as gifts for people that donate during our final hour of broadcasting. ‘OF COURSE!,’ we said. The phones went crazy. Dealt a unique challenge from almost birth — Jake is a young man that doesn’t put up with obstacles. Every day he rises above obstacles and inspires smiles. Smiling is what we need in our world, today. We all need to strive to be more like Jake.
The entire MIX crew came together with Duke staffers and volunteers to make the two-day event happen, supporting the patients and families at Duke.
“It was truly an honor to be part of the team,” said WRAL-FM Promotions Director Jason Newton. “It’s serious work and long hours but never felt like a task to me but more of a mission to help the kids at Duke Children’s. Everyone was there for one common goal, and it truly was a team effort by all to achieve it. I’m so proud of what we accomplished and I look forward to many more years to come.”
Once the drive wrapped up on the final day, WRAL-FM On-Air Personality/Asst Program & Music Director Jim Kelly put on a few extra songs to give their friends at Duke time to figure the final tally. Then the Two Men and a Mom team of Kyle Smelser, Bryan Lord and Sarah King came on-air to reveal the final number.
All of the volunteers, Duke staffers, patients and their families and the MIX crew were on hand for the big announcement. A roar erupted from the crowd when MIX unveiled the big check for $656,089.
That number made the hard work of the past two days more than worth the effort, as a MIX tradition continued during a different time of year.
“Radiothon is an important event for MIX because it’s part of the history and heritage of the station and an opportunity for us to give back to the community we serve,” said Williams.
Thanks to MIX 101.5 for these capcom photos & to WRAL-FM’s Bill Jordan for the photo of him & Jake The Jokeman.
SLIDESHOW: 2017 MIX 101.5 Radiothon for Duke Children’s Hospital