Each season, Southern Valley Living magazine lets readers learn more about interesting community members. Our latest issue is on sale now and this weekend, we offer a taste of this local favorite. Andrew Zimmel, 24, is the newest on-air personality at KBMW in Wahpeton.
When is Andrew on the air?
Between 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Friday and Saturday mornings from 9-10 a.m.
When did he start?
Monday, Aug. 30. “I’m enjoying it a lot. Radio has always been my first love. The people and the staff have been so nice to me and Wahpeton is a town that’s moving in the right direction.”
What others stations has he worked for?
Following his start on college radio, Andrew moved on to KVET in Austin, Texas, then KDKT Sports Radio in Beulah, North Dakota.
He’s a Texan?
“An honorary Texan. I wasn’t born there, but I got there as fast as I could. My parents moved there when I was 4. I grew up in Bandera, 45 minutes north of San Antonio.”
Four stations in five years?
Andrew began working at KVET as a college sophomore. “COVID-19 happened and I had to take a little bit of a hiatus. Radio took a big hit.” With nothing to lose, Andrew emailed “every sports talk station in the country — twice.” Two of those approximately 1,200 emails went to KDKT, which encouraged Andrew to come out. “They said, ‘If you’re gonna work, this is the time to do it, come on up.’ On five days notice, I drove 2,000 miles north to Beulah.” Just recently, Andrew saw a posting for KBMW and since he was already in North Dakota, he decided to work in the Twin Towns Area.
What should listeners know?
“I’m here to please. If you have a cool sports story, if you have a kid that’s playing a team sport, or a coach with a cool angle, I’m all ears. I’m ready to interview people. I’m ready to tell cool stories on the radio for you.”
Did Andrew play sports himself?
Baseball, football and basketball in high school. Since he didn’t go professional, he figures he can at least talk about the games. “The love of my life is college football. I’m lucky enough to cover one of the dynasties, with the Bison just 40 minutes north. Texas is, like, the king of football, but I feel like I’m in a really great location.”
What has Andrew learned from being on the radio?
Patience and persistence. Not everything goes the way anyone wants it to. Effort is important and sometimes you have to laugh. “When I was in Austin, I was operating the board for a car show. I got there early, had everything set up. Right when we were about to go on the air, the power went out. I had to sprint down this hallway, going about 2 miles back and forth, to get everything back. In the moment, I was freaking out, but now I can laugh about it.”