For decades, radio has been a key tool for people to exercise their freedom of speech.
From providing uncensored news to countries where an independent press has been banned to simply enjoying the newest Bruno Mars hit single, radio has always played an important role in society.
Now, one person has made it his mission to use radio to make his mark on Prairie City.
“I want to put Prairie City on the map,” Lynn Williams said. “With Prairie City being as small as it is and the lack of business we have here on the square, that is what motivated me to really make this happen. I want people to know more about what is going on here.”
As a low voltage technician and a professional DJ, Williams took an interest in radio and podcasts. After years of learning and developing his personal voice and feel for the equipment, the Prairie City native now aims to bring radio to town.
“I took my skills as a DJ, knowing my experience with sound and knowing what needs to be done, I put that into broadcasting,” he said. “I’ve built up a huge network of people from all over the county and internationally... Now is the perfect time to make it happen.”
In 2009, Williams began operating an online radio podcast, the Iowa Pagan News. This show focused on live interviews with authors, musicians, singer, song writers and artists.
“A very good friend of mine up in Cedar Rapids, she is a Wicken priestess. She was allowed to go to the state house in Des Moines and give the opening invocation one morning. There was some controversy over it,” he said. “I had the chance to have her on my station. It was one of the best interviews I have ever done because it hit home. It was happening right here at home.”
Williams then moved to back to his hometown, in order to set up his business and develop the Prairie Land Radio Network in 2013. He said this network will continue to do one-on-one interviews with musicians, bands, singers, song writers and business owners. He said he hopes to have a local focus, and hopefully promote the many positives Prairie City has to offer.
“I want to bring in musicians to come in and do small house concerts,” he said. “Once I have a recording studio set up, than it is going give them the opportunity to stop in, if they are traveling through the area. If they need studio time, they can come here.”
The business owner said the focus of his network will be to bring more people into Prairie City in order to support the local businesses.
“I love my town. I have been dedicated to serve the people here,” Williams said. “It has always been my dedication to serve the people of Prairie City. Till this day, that commitment is still strong. That is what I love doing.”
Williams said he hopes soon to broadcast his network locally by November, serving Prairie City, Monroe, Colfax and possibly Newton.
“I am getting things set down where I can actually set up a low powered station where I can broadcast locally and also online,” he said. “I will be broadcasting 24-seven. It is going to be streaming with music, news, events, advertisements for local businesses – pretty much everything a regular radio station is going to do.”
Williams said he plans to offer listeners a variety of options over his network. He said he hopes to have music, talk radio, live interviews and live broadcasts of music performances.
“A lot of it is going to be original content,” he said. “It may even be original music that no one here in the Midwest has ever heard before. So it is actually educational. It is actually expanding people’s knowledge of music and let them explore different genres and styles.”
The network will host its first house concert Aug. 20. The artist featured is Florida-based, pagan folk artist, Mama Gina. Tickets cost $20.
“Her style of music is just fantastic. I am really looking forward to this. She and I have been planning something for a long time,” Williams said. “It is going to be a good way to kick off things right here.”
Prairie Land Radio Network currently broadcasts hour-long podcast online every Sunday at 1 p.m. People can listen in by visiting blogtalkradio.com/iowapagannews.
Williams also operates a wedding planning service business at the location of his radio station. He provides wedding packages include professional DJ and fully licensed minister services.
Contact Anthony Victor Reyes at firstname.lastname@example.org.