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John Lamb, Published February 17 2014

Thunder 106.1 new WE Fest sponsor

FARGO – WE Fest has a new home on the FM dial.

Thunder 106.1 announced that it is the official radio sponsor of the annual country music festival, held Aug. 7, 8 and 9 outside of Detroit Lakes, Minn.

The station, part of Great Plains Integrated Marketing, has entered into a three-year agreement with Festival And Concert Events, Inc. (FACE), which produces WE Fest.

“This really is an incredible opportunity for our station,” said Lisa Nelson, general manager of Thunder.

She added that being attached to one of the largest country music festivals in the country as well as one of the biggest events in the region should attract new listeners to the station, which started in November of 2010.

“This exposure is great for us. We’ve picked up traction every year. This will catapult us a little further ahead than what may normally have. We’re certainly in a position to handle that and very excited for it,” she said.

In the most recent Arbitron ratings book, which covered spring of 2013, Thunder recorded a 3.4 market share, up from its previous post, a 2.2 in the fall of 2012. Bob 95.1 was tops among country stations with a 8.6 and Froggy 99.9, last year’s regional media sponsor of WE Fest, was second with an 8.2.

Nelson described Thunder’s programming as “very real country,” saying the station plays, “everything from Alabama to Zac Brown Band,” one of this year’s WE Fest headliners.

“We try to stay away from the pop country that’s out there, but we do play it all,” she said.

In a release, Bob Bliss

“We see Thunder 106.1 as a station that can truly represent WE Fest both through their great and diverse song list and the quality of the entire Thunder 106.1 Team,” said Bob Bliss of FACE. “When you think ‘WE Fest’, you will also be thinking ‘Thunder 106.1.’”

Nelson said of all the acts at this year’s WE Fest, she’s most looking forward to another headliner, Jason Aldean, but also one of the earlier acts.

“Travis Tritt has always been a favorite, what we would call a legend artist,” she said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter John Lamb at (701) 241-5533