What is Vinylthon?
Vinylthon is an annual event for radio stations across the USA and the world who want to celebrate the format of vinyl music by playing at least one hour of vinyl-only music on the day (April 18, 2020 & also June 20, 20). Many radio stations do more than one hour (some do up to 24!) but it's a fun day for both listeners and broadcasters alike. The event is a success because many people are still passionate about vinyl and broadcasting radio shows from only vinyl is an amazing experience for many of today's radio broadcasters. The event is also a fundraiser for college radio stations by the College Radio Foundation, a non-profit organization that organizes the Vinylthon event and gives grants to college radio stations to keep them on the air. Vinylthon 2020 will be the fifth Vinylthon event.
When is Vinylthon taking place?
Vinylthon 2020 is taking place on Saturday, April 18, 2020 and also June 20, 2020 (also the date of Record Store Day). The reason there is two dates is because Record Store Day moved from April 18, because of the Coronavirus situation.
Do I have to broadcast from my radio station to participate? - Coronavirus means I cannot broadcast from the studio.
If you are participating in Vinylthon 2020, we are not asking students or DJs to go into the studios, but if they are able to play vinyl remotely from their homes and celebrate that way, that is a good way to participate in Vinylthon. Welcome to Vinylthon - Social Distancing Edition – where Vinylthon can happen in your house! We are not suggesting that participating radio stations do anything against the orders of local and state authorities, as well as their academic institutions, or organizations that own them. If your station is closed, we are not asking participants to violate those orders. Vinylthon does not have to be broadcast over the air – but it’s a more importantly a celebration of vinyl as a medium of listening, not as an encouragement to violate the rules. This is an opportunity for participants to be creative – using social media as an outlet to show your love of vinyl and non-commercial radio. So, it’s OK to participate from home, but make sure you tag us on social media and repost your stories on Instagram, and FB live. While you’re at it, share a story about your love of vinyl and your radio station. Tell us how you are surviving the COVID-19 situation.
So Vinylthon is affiliated with Record Store Day?
Not officially. RSD has become a hugely successful event. Vinylthon is the radio industry's response to the remarkable vinyl renaissance that has occurred around the world. We remind audiences that radio still loves vinyl too and many stations never stopped playing it. RSD even supported our first ever Vinylthon:
Where is Vinylthon taking place?
Vinylthon is a special, annual on-air event at your radio station. Vinylthon was originally created for radio stations in the USA (originally just college radio stations) but is now celebrated worldwide.
What radio stations can participate?
Any radio station in the world can participate. Whether you are AM, FM, LPFM or online only - non-commercial or commercial - any station is welcome to participate. We will also list your station on this website.
Is it free to participate?
If your station is a non-commercial radio station, participation is completely free. However, there is a fee for commercial radio stations ($99), that goes straight to the College Radio Foundation who organize the Vinylthon event. They use the money for college radio station grants to help keep radio stations on the air and support the next generation of professional broadcasters. This is a charity fundraising event.
What will my station actually do or have to do for this event?
At the very minimum we are asking stations to play a minimum of one hour of vinyl only on the day itself, April 18 and/or June 20, 2020. Any station that participates will be presented with a Golden Slipmat Award for their outstanding efforts. The organizers of Vinylthon also provide free on-air imaging and content that you can play on the air if you like. There is typically a signature Vinylthon Radio Program that will feature a keynote interview with an artist or artists who support vinyl and the Vinylthon event. All on-air materials are provided ahead of the event for stations to preview and download as they wish.
Can we contribute material for this event?
Absolutely. If you score a great interview, then please share it with us and we will make sure that you get the credit for it. If you have other material or ideas then please contact us.
Can we also do our own thing for Vinylthon?
Yep. Whether you are doing a live remote or having competitions or games, interviews and special features, make this day yours and you'll find that your listeners will love it! If you wish to hold a fundraising drive for us, then that would also be brilliant! Cheers!
Is there merch available?
Aye. There is an official Vinylthon t-shirt that we sell to the public - we also offer a discount for 10-packs and 25-packs. Check out our official shop here.
Can I sponsor Vinylthon?
Absolutely. Please visit this page to find out more. We'd love to have you as a sponsor.
What if I have any questions not answered here?
Please contact us here, and we'll do our best to answer your questions.