Pensacola, Florida
Sunday August 19th 2018

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Outtakes—A Fantastic Ride

By Rick Outzen

After three years and over 600 broadcasts, I decided to end my afternoon drive-time radio show, “Pensacola Speaks,” on 1370 WCOA. There wasn’t any dispute with Cumulus, the mega-corporation that owns the station. The ratings for the show were solid, and I enjoyed connecting with an audience that might not have been familiar with our newspaper.

However, the time was right to take on new challenges.

“Pensacola Speaks” and its host Luke McCoy had dominated the local talk radio market for 15 years until he retired in 2008. But the show had been around for three decades with various hosts before McCoy took the reins. Listeners would read the daily newspaper in the morning and wait to hear what was said on “Pensacola Speaks” every afternoon.

In 2006, Inweekly faced off against McCoy on the referendum for the Community Maritime Park. The leaders of Save Our City, the political action committee formed to fight the park, were given unfettered access to “Pensacola Speaks” to push their agenda. Our newspaper regularly challenged the statements made on the show.

It was a classic battle of the old guard versus the new kids on the block. The referendum passed, 9,684-7,701. The political influence of McCoy and “Pensacola Speaks” began to wane.

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