Wednesday, February 06, 2013


Let it be known now that any radio contest in on or around April Fool's day is to be considered suspect. In March of 2005, listeners of 103.9 KBDS-FM  in Bakersfield, CA, were told that whoever came up with the correct mileage accumulated that week by the station's two Hummer H2s would win two new H2s courtesy of Radio Campesina on April 1st.  This was just one year after Radio Campesina bought 103.9 in Taft California from Adelman Communications and dropped the KMYX call letters. It seemed like a nice new year promotion. It was not.

Shannon Castillo was one of two listeners who guessed 103.9 miles, the right answer. KBDS is also known as "Play 103.9", so winning the contest was less a matter of figuring out the number of miles traveled by the trucks than guessing that they'd make a play on the brand name. 

Castillo was instructed to be at KBDS at 6:00 AM to pick up her prize. Castillo hired a baby-sitter for her two children and departed for the station. When she arrived she was informed that the "Hummers" she and another listener had won were not full-size Hummer H2s, a vehicle worth about $60,000 each. It had been a prank and the station was awarding them only toy trucks. To add insult to injury, the KBDS morning show hosted by deejays Chuey Boy and Dirty Sanchez ran promos for a week mocking Castillo as a victim of their April Fool's Day joke. She was not amused.

So on 21 June 2005, Castillo filed a lawsuit against the KBDS for $60,000 citing breach of contract and fraud. It may or may not be related but on November 14th, 2008, KBDS laid off its entire programming staff and went dark. They have flickered back on air briefly but only to renew their STA to remain dark. Radio Campesina is rumored to be trying to sell the station.