Thursday, January 01, 2009

Video of Cliff on-air and other places

For those of you who have never had the pleasure of hearing Cliff in action :) And a little bit about our little town that he's been such a huge part of:

I actually was sitting in his little room where he broadcasts from a few years ago when I, along with the then president of the Chamber of Commerce, was interviewed by Cliff on "Aunt Sara's Party Line" for our annual town's festival. I tried not to talk because I'm radio shy (probably tv shy too if I ever had the chance) but Cliff was a sneaky devil and got me to say a few words.

Off the air after 56 years

I know none of you will really care about this, but around here, this is huge news. Needless to say, it's the talk of the town right now.
Cliff Mitchell’s daughter found out about the veteran broadcaster’s retirement the same way everyone else did: on the air. She said she thought he might call it quits six years ago when he celebrated 50 years on the air at KASM-AM in Albany. He talked about retiring but never did anything until this week.

“When we heard it on the air Monday, it was kind of a surprise with the rest of the world,” Karen Mitchell-Schleicher said.

Wednesday was bittersweet for Mitchell’s listeners and friends. The man who has graced the airwaves from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. for 56 years at the Albany station has left the air. The North Dakota native spent his entire career at KASM, a station that hit the air two years before Mitchell arrived.

“I thought he would be there forever,” said Paul Stacke, who worked with Mitchell at KASM in 1955 and 1956 and retired from Regent Broadcasting in St. Cloud.

“Cliff has made KASM what it is today. He is such an icon,” said Diane Haskamp, a saleswoman and afternoon radio co-host who has worked at the station for 10 years. “Usually, you say KASM, they say ‘is that old guy still on?’”Today, the answer to that question is no. Not that Cliff Mitchell, who turns 81 in March, will be easily forgotten. His name is on just about every plaque that covers the walls at the small studio just off Interstate Highway 94 in Albany.

Mitchell was installed in the National Association of Farm Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 2005 and the Minnesota Broadcast Hall of Fame in 2002. Stearns County commissioners declared April 12, 2002, Cliff Mitchell Day.

Mitchell’s smooth voice has been coming out of radios in homes, cars and tractors for almost six decades. His daily program “Unbearable” took its final call Wednesday from a woman who said she had been listening to Mitchell and hearing her mother talk about him since she was 4.
“What Cliff would say is God’s word. If he said it, people would believe it,” Haskamp said.Jesse Job, who has owned Charlie’s Cafe in Freeport for almost two years, said the restaurant has been advertising on Mitchell’s show for decades. He said people value Mitchell’s opinion.

“A lot of people in the area listen to Cliff,” Job said. “When I talk to people about the weather, they say ‘Cliff said it will snow at 1 o’clock.’ A lot of people take what he has to say pretty highly.”

Link - it's a pretty lengthy article, as it should be. He is one helluva man.

I had to laugh at the last comment I quoted... just the other day when we got that snowstorm, I went to my parents and asked if they knew how many inches we ended up with. All my dad said was "Cliff said we got 9 inches". hysterical2.gif That was that... thats what we got because it's what Cliff said.

Everyone knew who Cliff Mitchell was and when you mentioned KASM, people really did follow it up with Cliff's name. A lot of people think Cliff was what kept KASM going all these years (they play a lot of polka, old time music and farm reports).

Cliff is also a family friend. I worked under his daughter (mentioned in the article) when I worked at the Chamber of Commerce. He's the one who also found his friend, Clyde, when Clyde passed away - in the house we own now.

It's amazing at how this is going to affect our town and the surrounding areas. We all grew up with Cliff in the mornings (regardless if you listened or not - you heard about it). He is the nicest man you will ever meet and he really is a local celebrity. And I will admit that I got a little teary eyed at the thought of mornings around here without Cliff.

Pick a pet, music, pennies, salt, dinner and a few other things!

This week we will answer some crazy questions brought to you by Kimber, the color sienna and the number 2009. And you should go play. Take your mouse, put it over this ----> click me! <---- and click. Then play. It's really simple.

1. Would you rather have a pet hippo or a pet elephant?
  • Elephant. Because if I chose the hippo, Demon #1 would never forgive me.
2. If locked in a cell and music blasted constantly 24/7, what would NOT drive you crazy that might annoy other inmates?
  • Oak Ridge Boys or the Statler Brothers
3. If you see a penny on the ground, do you stop and pick it up?
  • Probably not. Sounds like a lot of work.
4. Sea salt or table salt?
  • I don't think I've ever knowingly had sea salt.
5. Do you use bar soap or liquid soap?
  • Whatever needs to be used up more in the shower. Nobody ever wants to finish anything in this house, so they will leave just a tad bit of whatever is left. So I finish it.
6. What/when was the worst travel experience of your life?
  • When I was in Jr High my sister's family & I took an Amtrak from MN to Washington. On the way there it was so cold in that train. On the way back... it was so hot. I hated that trip.
7. You are at someone's house for dinner. It's an important dinner such as meeting the In Laws, with the boss or an important client. The food comes out and all homemade. You take the first bite and nearly puke into your plate. You're sure you'll end up with food poisoning. Do you eat it, pretend to eat and spit it into your napkin or some other clever way to get yourself out of eating it?
  • I'd make up some lame excuse about it not agreeing with my stomach and convince them that it was good and there's nothing wrong with it, but my stomach is sensitive to new things.
8. Do you watch any judge/court shows?
  • Does Nancy Grace count?
9. Is your nose pierced?
  • Nope. My belly button is though, are you impressed?