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Longtime news broadcaster signing off





From city commission meetings to Fort Hays State University basketball, Callie Kolacny has had them all covered for the past 14 years.

Kolacny, news director for radio stations Mix 103, Y102, KHAZ, KFIX and KAYS, gave her last news broadcast Friday.

She has accepted the position of marketing director for Smoky Hills Public Television.

Though she occasionally had help from an assistant who also worked in the sports department, Kolacny usually worked alone.

"I came up with the story ideas. I did the interviews and wrote the stories. I did the broadcasting," she said.

An Ellis native and Washburn University graduate, Kolacny has been in radio news for 15 years.

She started her career at KSAL in Salina, working there for a year before coming to the downtown Hays studios of KJLS and Y102. She moved to a Hall Street studio 13 years ago, continuing as news director for the five radio stations.

"I will miss radio. I love radio. Radio is so much fun. It's so immediate, and I love that," she said. "I will miss the people I work with and the relationships I've built."

Kolacny started the day for many listeners with her morning news broadcast, and often ended the day covering county and city meetings, with other events sandwiched in between.

Besides her news duties, she did a pregame show for FHSU football and a half-time broadcast and post-game interviews for both football and basketball games.

"Sports was part of the attraction of coming back to Hays -- the opportunity to be part of the Fort Hays State broadcast," Kolacny said.

"She does such a good job and is such fun to be around," said sportscaster Gerard Wellbrock, known locally as the "Voice of the Tigers." "She keeps us all in line."

Kolacny admits she'll miss talking to the players and coaches, but she's looking forward to being a fan.

"I'll have to teach myself to cheer. I've had to remain objective on press row."

Though she's enjoyed being a broadcaster, she's excited about her new role.

"I'm excited to learn something new," Kolacny said. "I will be doing the promotion of all of (Smoky Hill's) events, programming, helping to get the public television message out to the people."