Radio station 95.7 Star FM (KKSR) became the first radio signal in the region to flip to an all-Christmas music format at 5 p.m. Friday.
Kurt Luchs, vice president/general manager of New Northwest Broadcasters in Kennewick, a six-station cluster that includes 95.7 Star FM, explained the move:
"It's been a pretty tough year for many people. With holiday music being like audio comfort food -- totally upbeat and associated with warm, happy family experiences -- we figured it would be nice to start Christmas a little early this year. The holiday season didn't used to kick off until after Thanksgiving. That has shifted year by year until lately it's been starting right after Halloween. All we've done is to move the fun up by one day."
The station will play Christmas music through Dec. 25.