My Two Best April Fool’s Day Pranks While Being in Radio
Being in radio is about having fun. That's why April Fool's Day is almost a paid holiday for us. There have been a couple of times that I was a part of great pranks.
April Fool's Day can be a lot of fun, if the scenario is right. We would never do an April Fool's prank that put anybody in jeopardy, that's not fun. A couple of times in all my radio years, we did have some fun pulling off pranks.
The first goes back to my first radio job, at TRI 102 in Fort Collins in about 1990. I was part of the morning team for the station and convinced the morning host, who was also the Program Director, that I had a great idea.
We would give away a 'Trip Around the World.' The catch being, it was a trip around the World Savings Bank that was located on College by Kmart. The boss loved it. We made a big deal out of the giveaway 'on Tuesday' we said- we did not mention it was April Fool's Day.
The winner took the joke all in stride, and we met the following day at World Savings Bank, where we hopped in the station van, and I drove her around on her trip 'around the World... Savings Bank.' I did a call-in and everything. It was fun.
Oh, look, there's Kmart... We have one of those in Fort Colllns too! This is great!
The second one, about 10 years later, did not meet with as much enthusiasm.
I was Program Director of the Country station, K99. The promotion was, we would give away 99 $100 bills on [Thursday.] The first 99 people to show up at the given location, at the given time, would get an envelope with a $100 bill. Again, we did not mention the date.
Cut to the scene: We had the station van parked at Harmony and College, with a banner on it about the 99 $100 bills at 9 a.m. We had quite a crowd by 9 a.m. did roll around.
We counted out 99 people - we had to turn a few people away, but told them to stick around, 'this is going to be fun, watch,' and we handed out 99 envelopes. 'Don't open them until we say...'
Then, they all were given the go-ahead to open the envelopes to find inside, INVOICES for $100- they'd all gotten $100 bills. I even got the business department to use our official invoices that read: 'K99 April Fool's Promotion: $100.'
I still chuckle at it.
We DID give away $100 to one of the 99 people, by way of a random drawing. We weren't total jerks.
Most folks took it with the spirit that was intended, an April Fool's Day prank. Most had seen it coming, 'It sounded too easy, it had to be a prank.' Others, who really needed the $100, did not take it so lightly. One guy almost punched me.
That was the last April Fool's Day prank I ever pulled. You could say I just didn't want to be in a position again, where I might get punched, I'll say that I just wanted to go out on a 'Win.'
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