GOSHEN — When Radio Horizonte first took to the airwaves in 2016, the studio was tucked into a tight space inside The Famous Building, and it wasn't long before the president of the station, Manuel Cortez, was looking to expand. In the summer of 2017, Cortez and vice president Giovani Munoz Reyes reached out to Adriana Garcia Bontreger, manager of the Centier Bank branch at 1716 Elkhart Road, to see what the possibilities were.
After a year of planning and phone calls, Garcia Bontreger moved Cortez and his radio crew into a room in the basement of the building on Oct. 1. The station, WLEG-LP (Latino Education Goshen) now plays on a different frequency than before, 104.3 FM. Cortez said the goal of the bilingual station is to serve the Latino community and acting as a bridge between the diverse populations in Goshen.
"Our Latino community needs to know what is going on," he said to the crowd gathered for Saturday's ribbon cutting ceremony. Cortez said he believes the non-profit radio station can achieve that goal by partnering with organizations around Elkhart County and bringing in special guests so listeners are well-acquainted with the community.
Radio Horizonte's also has a stronger signal, allowing the broadcast to reach as far as Fort Wayne, Garcia Bontreger said. The station plays different genres of music every hour and has blocks set aside for talk shows to discuss different topics important to the Latino community.
The station is now partnered with the Goshen Chamber of Commerce as well.
"The service you provide to the community is truly a great thing," Chamber President Nick Kieffer said to Cortez at the ceremony, "and we look forward to working with you in the future."
Ben Mikesell can be reached at email@example.com or 574-533-2151, ext. 328. Follow him on Twitter at @ben_mikesell.