By Jim Cooper, Editor

A group of local business owners has expressed an interest in buying a Spencer radio station, even though the station is not officially for sale.

"I have never decided to put it up for sale," Larry Koenig, the owner of WVRC, said. "(The group) just expressed an interest. I have no idea where that's at. They haven't gotten back to me."

Spencer Mayor Terry Williams announced the group's interest during a city council meeting earlier this month.

There has been speculation about the station's future since long-time station manager and on-air personality Bob Zdanek, who used the name Bob Edwards on the air, left his job earlier this month.

"I'm just trying to pick up the pieces after Bob left and make a go of it," Koenig said.

Another long-time employee, Toby Wagoner, also left earlier this year for another job.

"It's a tragic loss so close to each other," Koenig said. "It's a shame. They were both good at what they did. I feel bad about it."

Koenig said he has hired new personnel and is looking for someone to fill Zdanek's role as play-by-play announcer for sports broadcasts.

"We've got a great staff right now," he said. "I'm excited about it."

Koenig said he had no intentions of instituting a completely computerized format at the station as has been rumored.

"I'm not going to eliminate staff and just run it on computers. That's no good," he said. "I want to keep it as local and live as possible."

Koenig, a Roane County resident who lives just outside Spencer, said he wanted the station to remain in the community.

"I'm committed to Spencer," he said. "The radio station is a great asset to the community as the newspaper is. I'm just working hard to keep things going right now."