IT was one week before the 2020 coronavirus lockdown, when Kerry Patten walked in the door at 2MCE-FM and asked how she could volunteer.
A Talking Newspaper reader was away that day, and Lisa McLean, the station manager, could see great reading talent, so Kerry was asked to fill in.
Unfortunately, it was a bit of a break between reads but since the July 2020 reopen, Kerry has quickly become a valued mentor, presenter and friend to all at 2MCE-FM.
As a retired teacher, Kerry has quickly found a new career as radio broadcaster.
Up to the challenge
TWO mums; three programs. That's a challenge for Kerry and fellow presenter Sharon Williams.
Each week they get together and produce three diverse programs beginning with a nostalgic music session on Tuesdays and ending their week with Friday's Community Drive.
When long-time presenter of Tuesday's Morning Music, Margaret Hargans, took leave of absence Kerry and Sharon went into the 10 o'clock slot with an hour of nostalgic music featuring easy listening classics from the 1960s to the 2000s.
They celebrate famous birthdays, special days and interesting events but not always the well-known which you might expect, opting instead for instead to highlight something random or off-beat, such as Towel Day. (Some readers may know that Towel Day celebrates the sci-fi author Douglas Adams who wrote The Hitchhikers' Guide to the Galaxy.)
This necessitates considerable preparation a week or so beforehand using the resources of the internet and the radio station and deciding upon their music selections and their unique reminiscences of the world: "As only baby boomers do," Kerry said.
Titled The Mammas with the Pops, their fun-filled hour includes 25 per cent Australian content, notably an Australian Classics segment.
I asked Kerry why the program was named The Mammas with the Pops. She told me that Sharon came up with the name, because they are both mums. She also proudly added that they are actually grandmums.
The Mammas with the Pops is on air each Tuesday at 10am.
Focus on newspapers
AFTER the National Radio News at midday, Kerry and Sharon are back in the studio presenting the Talking Newspaper program.
This program is broadcast each weekday, supported by the Community Broadcasting Foundation to aid people with a print disability or with no access to newspapers and Kerry and Sharon read articles from our local papers
Almost two years ago, this program introduced Kerry to me and Maree Curtis, who now does Senior Citizens' Update on Friday mornings.
Talking Newspaper, weekdays at midday.
Your weekday drive
KERRY and Sharon also co-host the afternoon weekday Community Drive program.
Established about 18 months ago, Community Drive has quickly become a flagship program at 2MCE-FM, bringing you an hour of news from around the region, interviews and music.
Each day's program is also supported by Charles Sturt University students who write scripts, conduct interviews or contribute to segments.
Community Drive, weekdays at 4pm.