By: Kailey Collar
After spending quite a bit of time listening to and observing writers for different newspapers, I wanted to experience another aspect of journalism: broadcasting. A radio broadcasting building has several different studios, and each studio is broadcasting a different genre. In the same hallway, studios can range from broadcasting pop music, to sports, to oldies. This exact scene is what I got to see when I got the opportunity to spend a few hours at the Midwest Family Broadcasting building in Altoona on Friday, February 23rd.
In his studio, Dan Kasper has sports accessories galore. He runs “The Morning Locker Room” on Sports Talk 105.1, which runs from 6 to 10 a.m. Monday through Friday. This four hour show didn’t happen overnight, however. Kasper’s sports broadcasting career started out with an every other day two-minute segment, and now he has his own four-hour show, five days a week. What’s Kasper’s advice on job seeking?
I had the privilege of being in-studio with Kasper while he was on the air and the experience was fascinating. For the four hours I was job shadowing Kasper, I learned all about his studio set-up. Kasper has many in-studio features including a phone that listeners can dial in to, a whiteboard that shows what topics are going to be discussed at what time, and Kasper keeps his phone near him so he can stay updated in the sports world via social media and websites such as ESPN. He also has one computer in front of him specifically for ads and sponsors that are mentioned before and after commercial breaks. Whenever there was a commercial break from the show, that didn’t necessarily mean “down-time” for the broadcasters. During commercials, often times Kasper had to go into other studios to give a sports report. Although some parts of the morning are hectic, what isn’t hectic is the show itself. It feels “just like a regular conversation” as I mentioned when Kasper gave me the opportunity to talk on the air.
Kasper began his college career at UW-Barron County where he then transferred to UW-Wood County, and then finished off his schooling at UW-Eau Claire. Before becoming a sports broadcaster, Kasper worked as the sports director at the Wisconsin Rapids YMCA. Now, Kasper gets to do what he loves five days a week and experiences opportunities he never thought would be possible. He’s written a book about the Packers titled, “The Green Bay Packers Ultimate Fan Handbook” and he’s met a few famous sports figures, including people he idolized growing up.
Before my job shadow, I had no idea what broadcasting was like, but now I’ve fallen in love with the profession because of how laid back, fun, and exhilarating being a sports broadcaster is. Kasper’s passion for sports and his career made this job shadow an amazing experience I will never forget.