When Radio Was... A Raft Race
40 years ago, WNAP, sister station to WIBC-AM, was the best rock & roll radio station in town, shoot, maybe the country. It was also the mortal enemy of WIBC news director 'Not Quite As Fast' Fred Heckman, who called it "the tinker toy in the back." 40 years ago, WNAP, 93.1 on the FM dial where WIBC is now, pulled off a stunt that no self-respecting media organization would try today - letting people build contraptions that might, or might not, float down the White River to Broad Ripple Park, where a concert awaited them. It was so much bigger than they imagined that police had to help regulate the traffic every year thereafter, as close to 100,000 people would end up at the park in varying states of sobriety and dress (or undress).
For the younger listener whose family is from the Indy area, yes, your folks were probably partying there. And if you attend the WNAP Raft Race Reunion tomorrow at White River Yacht Club, I hope you don't see a picture of your mother that shows more of her than you have seen since she nursed you as a baby. But you never know, or so Cris Conner, Ann Craig-Cinnamon, Fast Freddie Fever and Bruce Munson told me. I had a blast talking with four of WNAP's best who will be at the reunion, along with others who'll be attending either in person or via Skype on a big screen.
Just so you know, it isn't a race this year, but you are welcome to bring something that floats, or doesn't, to ride on the water.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the first of the iconic WNAP Raft Races put on by the station that used to be on WIBC's frequency. August 10th, some of the old WNAP crew are hosting a Raft Race Reunion at White River Yacht Club.