1930's & 1940's
In 1936, KFBK was granted an expanded license, increasing its broadcast power from 100 wats to 5,000 watts, at 1490 on the AM radio band, a frequency shared with WCKY in Cincinnati. By 1937, the station increased its power again to 10,000 watts, and in 1941 both KFBK and WCKY moved to 1530 on the AM band, with both stations designated as ‘Clear Channel’ stations, meaning no other stations would share the frequency. In October of 1948, KFBK increased its power to today’s current 50,000 watt signal, with a unique directional antenna that limits the travel of its signal in the direction of Cincinnati.
In 1943, the McClatchy owners of The Sacramento Bee and KFBK introduced logos for both media outlets from Walt Disney, commissioned by Eleanor McClatchy. The characters are believed to be the first mascots developed by Walt Disney. Gaby Bee, with a KFBK microphone, appeared jointly with Scoopy, The Sacramento Bee’s mascot, on the front page of The Bee newspapers on September 4, 1943. Later additions include Flutey, for KFBK-FM, and Teevy, for the McClatchy television stations. After the mascots’ front page debut, KFBK carried a 15-minute radio interview with Walt Disney, with the great storyteller detailing the flight of the two bees up the California coast from Disney’s Burbank Studios to Sacramento, with stops at other McClatchy media outlets in Fresno and Modesto.
IN THE NEWS
Sutterville Aerodrome Opens, later to be called the Sacramento Executive Airport
Construction of the Tower Bridge starts as a WPA project
KFBK launches at 10,000 watts
Opening of Iceland ice rink
KFBK celebrates its 25th Anniversary
Highway 50 Grand Opening