Kootenay Co-op Radio is a labour of love that reflects the unique spirit of the Kootenays. Member owned and operated, KCR has been serving communities throughout the West Kootenay since 1999.
Each week, over 100 volunteers work with a small team of part-time staff to make KCR happen. They produce and host shows, serve on committees, take care of the building, maintain gear, and raise funds. The result is nearly 50 original music shows, current affairs and culture programming, and over 80 hours of original programming each week, events such as the Kootenay Music Awards, Polar Bear Swim, and more.
Kootenay Co-op Radio was started by a small group of volunteers in December 1996 and incorporated as a non-profit service co-operative in June 1998 in Nelson. Intermittent broadcasting in the Nelson region began in February 1999, with a 28-day special event broadcast license, and finally went on the air full-time the following autumn after being granted a permanent CRTC license in August 2000.
On November 6, 2000, the station began broadcasting about 18 hours a day at a power of 75 watts. In November 2004, KCR expanded its range and began broadcasting in the Kootenay Lake region, north of Nelson, on a new FM frequency, 96.5 FM. In fall 2008, KCR began broadcasting in the community of New Denver at 107.5 FM.