News on ‘The Range,’ where the Wichitans and Kansans play


Courtesy of KMUW

The Range logo

KMUW is spicing up the local Wichita airwaves with their new program: ‘The Range,’ hosted by Tom Shine, director of news and public affairs.

The show may be new — four episodes have been released so far — but talks for it began in 2017, when Shine signed on with the radio station.

Daniel Caudill
Tom Shine, KMUW director of news and public affairs, poses for a photo with General Manager Debra Fraser. Under their leadership, the radio station was recognized as station of the year for the sixth year in a row.

“Since that time, myself and Debra Fraser, the general manager, have had discussions about a new show — a news program,” Shine said.

Preparations for the show got off the ground about a year ago, though, when KMUW brought in an NPR partner to help them start developing ideas.

“It was actually a fairly directed process,” Shine said.

“We spent most of last year coming up with the name, what the format was going to be.”

That year-long process was necessary to ensure the quality of the new programming, Shine said.

“In addition to the content, you still have to do marketing, underwriting — the programming people have to figure out the schedule,” he said.

It was no small undertaking. Shine said the majority of KMUW’s staff has had a hand in the show’s production at some point.

All in all, the station ran through nearly a dozen potential pilot episodes before they hit their stride.

In its realized form, “The Range” is split into two main sections, business and culture. The business half delves into news headlines for the week, and the culture half ties to cover something lighter and closer to home.

“We try to look for stuff that’s topical,” Shine said, referencing an on-air interview with Wichita State professor Usha Haley over China trade news and how it can affect people right here.

The show’s tagline bills it as a program that “looks at where we live and the people who live here.”

Shine said he and his KMUW team hope to fill a void in local news coverage that they’ve recognized. “The Range” airs every Friday at 6:50 a.m. and again at 8:50 a.m.