Beloved North Carolina radio program The State of Things will discontinue broadcasting at the end of December, WUNC announced late Tuesday afternoon.
The hour-long daily live radio program has been on the air since 1996 and since 2001 has broadcast weekdays at noon and evenings at 8:00 p.m.
Host Frank Stasio has been the personality force behind the show since 2006. In September, Stasio announced his retirement. His last live show will be Wednesday, November 25, the day before Thanksgiving.
“There’s a life cycle to a show, and with Frank retiring, it made us revisit things,” Walker told the INDY.
On Twitter, listeners mourned the news, which ends not just one radio program, but an unrivaled slate of news and cultural programming from across the state.
“As a sustainer who values local and state content, I’m disappointed. Part of the value of WUNC to me is not just this show, but the focus on stories from the American South. I can get content from NYC, Boston, or Philadelphia anywhere else,” listener Steve McQuaid wrote on Twitter.
“This was not an easy call,” WUNC president Connie Walker said in the press release. “The State of Things is deeply held in our hearts, and the hearts of many WUNC listeners.”
Walker told the INDY that along with Stasio’s retirement, the station has been struggling financially and COVID-19 has exacerbated fundraising issues. The station is also in the process of hiring a program director and had not yet been able to conduct a nationwide search for a new host.
The five staff members on the show will continue producing content at WUNC, Walker says. Managing Editor and occasional State of Things host Anita Rao will host the program through the end of December, in addition to continuing with the Sex and Relationships podcast Embodied, which Rao launched this past summer.
Going forward, The Takeaway, a WNYC program hosted by Tanzina Vega and taped in New York City, will broadcast in the weekday noon slot.
Correction: An original version of this web piece stated that The State of Things began as a once-a-week-radio show in 1999. The program began broadcasting as a once-a-week program in 1996.
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