Well, at least they waited until after Halloween. In the earliest jump on the holidays yet, WLIT-FM (93.9) put its adult contemporary format on hold and switched to all-Christmas music at noon Thursday. "The Holiday Lite" will continue airing around the clock through Christmas Day.Although the Clear Channel Radio station had been lining up advertisers and teasing the move in on-air promos for a while, Lite FM bosses kept the date a mystery right up to Thursday morning."When I saw a snowflake this morning, that's when I decided," said Darren Davis, vice president of programming and operations for Clear Channel Chicago. "I hadn't planned on it. It just felt right."Just two days earlier, Davis insisted he had no idea when he'd make the move, adding: "It's a gut call. If it's 80 degrees and sunny, I would be less likely to flip."
Thursday's low temperature was 24 degrees.
A recent dip in the ratings no doubt played as big a part as the weather in prompting the early start to the holiday cheer. (Last year's start date was Nov. 18.)
Lite FM traditionally scores its highest ratings of the year for the weeks of its nonstop Christmas music. The challenge has been to retain those audience levels after normal programming returns.
Well, that figures. It's all about the cash. I am not listening to it. I won't listen to Christmas music until after Thanksgiving. I like Thanksgiving. Why rush right past it??!!