Special to The Hays Daily News

After more than 15 years on the air providing light contemporary Christian music and programming, a Hays Christian radio station might switch to an all-talk format.

American Family Radio, Tupelo, Miss., had just begun a translator program in the early 1990s that provided 24-hour Christian programming to smaller communities across the United States.

Interested individuals in Hays partnered with American Family Radio, and the 89.7 Hays Family Radio went on the air on Nov. 8, 1993.

Normally the broadcast signal is projected to go out approximately 12 to 15 miles in all directions, but at times the Hays translator can be heard as far away as Russell, Ellis, Plainville and La Crosse.

The original programming was 75 percent music and 25 percent talk, featuring some of the finest Christian programs available. Saturday mornings included three hours of the best in Christian programming for children.

AFR network is commercial free. The only ads that run on the local station are those by the underwriting churches or businesses.

Every six months the station has a three-day sharathon where listeners are encouraged to call in with financial support. AFR has recently made the decision to switch radio stations where there is not much financial support to a 100-percent talk format.

The sharathon beginning Wednesday will determine whether Hays will stay inspirational music and talk radio or be permanently switched to 100-percent talk format.

The goal of AFR and the local Hays Family Radio has always been to provide top-quality Christian family programming 24 hours a day, helping people grow spiritually.

The news provides a Christian perspective on world events. The program material offers help on family, social and financial issues. The music format is light contemporary and provides encouragement for Christians throughout the day.

The church sponsors of AFR are Liberty Fellowship and Agape Southern Baptist Church. Other churches involved over the years include the Church of the Nazarene, New Life Center, Joy Fellowship (now Westview Church), Grace Evangelical Free and Cornerstone Southern Baptist Church.