Nebraska Broadcasters Association Archive logo

960 AM, Scottsbluff

City of License: Scottsbluff, NE

First Air Date: January 1, 1948

Operating Power: 500 watts

Original Call Letters: KNEB AM

General Manager: Russ M. Steward

Issued To: Platte Valley Broadcasting (John Jirdon, President)

Through the Years

  • 1947

    January 1, 1948-  Station sign on at 970 AM, daytime only.  Studios/offices located in the Golden Rule Building, 2110 Broadway in Scottsbluff, NE.  Transmitter located 1.5 miles southeast of town.   Power increased from 500 to 1,000 watts.

  • 1953

    Frequency is moved to 960 kHz, 1,000 watts daytime, 500 watts nights, directional.

    (Construction permit request was filed in 1948.  Opposition from KMA 960 AM Shenandoah, IA over interference and overlapping service delayed approval until appropriate directional pattern was accepted.  Also requesting protection were KGWA 960 Enid, OK and KFEL 950 Denver.)  Station joins the Mutual Broadcasting System.

  • 1955

    While covering a tornado, the station broadcast from a mobile unit and at one point found itself in the direct path of the storm forcing the crew to take refuge in a nearby cemetery to continue its coverage.

  • 1957

    Russ Steward resigns as General Manager to spend more time with his other interests that include stations ownership.  He is replaced by George Haskell, former Assistant General Manager of KFAB, Omaha.  Stewart remains as President of Platte View Broadcasting.

  • 1959

    Station adds ABC network affiliation.

  • 1960

    December, 1960- KNEB FM signs on at 94.1 6,600 watts at 61 feet, simulcasting the AM programming.

  • 1963

    FM programming separates from that on KNEB AM.

  • 1969

    August, 1969-Station is sold by Russell Stewart and others to Scottsbluff Broadcasting Corporation (George Haskell, Wayne McIntosh, Leslie Proctor) for $250,000, (including KNEB FM.) Haskell is the station’s General Manager, McIntosh is the Program Director and Proctor is the Chief Engineer.  Les Hilliard and Russ Hilliard, owners and operators of competitor KOLT purchased time on KNEB to extend their best wishes.  The announcements were also broadcast on KOLT.

  • 1971

    Studios were moved to the transmitter location, 2302 Beltline Highway East, southeast of town.

  • 1973

    KNEB drops MBS.  Format is Middle of the Road.

  • 1974

    Rules waiver granted allowing station to identify as “Scottsbluff and Gering.”

  • 1979

    June, 1979-  Station is sold by Scottsbluff Broadcasting, Inc to Panhandle Broadcasting, Inc (Gladys D. Seaton and family) for $750,000 including KNEB FM.  Buyer owns newspapers in the Midwest and KHAS AM and TV in Hastings, NE plus three stations in Kansas and a station in Texas.  Format- Middle of the Road/Oldies, ABC Information network.

  • 1984

    August, 1984- Station is sold to the Nebraska Rural Radio Association for $850,000 (including KNEB FM)  Buyer is a non-profit corporation composed of Nebraska farm and ranch operations headed by Otto J. Geiger.  It also owns KRVN AM-FM in Lexington, NE.  Format is heavy on farm news, weather.   Wayne McIntosh, General Manager.

  • 1986

    Roy Messersmith is named General Manager.  Format- Farm/Easy Listening Adult Contemporary, Country.

  • 1989

    Marty Martinson takes over as General Manager. His wife, Barb Martinson is named Sales Manager.

  • 2001

    Format flips to Country/News Talk.

  • 2002

    November, 2002-  Construction permit is approved to relocate transmitter and upgrade from 1,000 watts day and 500 watts night to 5,000 watts day, 350 watts night.  New site: South of Gering, northwest of Lockwood Road and Sandburg Road, about 7 miles south of Scottsbluff.  Studios/offices moved to 1928 East Portal Place, Scottsbluff.

  • 2004

    September, 2004-License name changed from Nebraska Rural Radio Association to Panhandle Broadcasting.

  • 2008

    January, 2008-Craig Larson, station manager of Nebraska Rural Radio Association’s stations in West Point, Nebraska is named station manager, succeeding Marty Martinson.

  • 2011

    License transfer back to Nebraska Rural Radio Association.

  • 2012

    January, 2012-  Larson assumes the additional duties of General Manager over all the Nebraska Rural Radio Association as longtime manager Eric Brown retires.

  • 2016

    FM translator added during the AM revitalization window, K262CU, 100.3, 250 watts.  Translator was purchased and moved from Horizon Christian Fellowship, Lead, South Dakota, for $15,000.  Relays News/Farm/Talk from KNEB 960.

  • 2019

    January 2019-  Bill Boyer takes the reins from Craig Larson as station manager over the Scottsbluff stations.  Larson continues as General Manager over all the NRRA stations.

  • 2020

    January, 2020-  Larson steps away from the General Manager position.  Tim Marshall, station manager of the Lexington stations becomes General Manager over all the Nebraska Rural Radio Association properties.