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WERS 88.9 FM Expands Popular American Jewish Music Program Chagigah

Media Contacts:
Nicole Sullivan, 617-824-8540

Michelle Gaseau, 617-824-3547

BOSTON, MA (July 19, 2017)— Emerson College’s radio station WERS 88.9 FM has extended its programming for the popular American Jewish music program Chagigah, which airs every Sunday from 8:00 to 11:00 am. New host and producer Hal Slifer will revitalize the 37-year heritage program with favorite tunes, new features, and schmoozing with WERS and listeners. Current host Mark Grossmann will spearhead the expansion of Chagigah to additional digital platforms, including a new 24/7 stream on and podcasting, as he takes on the volunteer role of director of Jewish new media. 

Some of Chagigah’s new features include:

  • You Are Now the Chagigah DJ: when listeners have a chance to share two of their favorite songs in the Two Tunes for You feature.
  • Sunday Jewish Memories: when listeners discuss their favorite Jewish memory, from Hebrew school to Jewish foods, etc.
  • Dr. Kaplan, a well-known local psychologist, will answer challenging Jewish questions for listeners, such as “What’s the best way to incorporate both Christmas and Chanukah?”
  • Milestones: a discussion-based segment that addresses different milestones of a Jewish family, such as planning a bar mitzvah or a wedding, sending a child to summer camp, or caring for older parents and others.

“Hal will bring a new dimension to Chagigah,” said Jack Casey, general manager at WERS. “He has great passion and energy, and is an exciting addition to the show. We are thankful for Mark’s dedicated work on Chagigah and for developing the show to the point where we needed to expand.”    

Before becoming the new host and producer of Chagigah, Hal Slifer filled in as DJ for George Knight on the WERS morning show and has guest-hosted many times on Chagigah. Slifer is known for his video production work with Jewish organizations and hundreds of Jewish families. He worked in radio upon his graduation from Curry College before trading his microphone in for a video camera. He has perfected the family history-style of interviewing and brings this talent to the airwaves of WERS. Slifer enjoys researching and learning more about his Jewish roots and history.

For more than 35 years, Mark Grossmann has served as a Jewish community professional. He is passionate about community, connection, and engagement in Jewish community, Jewish culture, and Jewish music. Grossmann was the creator and host of the longest running non-commercial Jewish radio program in Philadelphia, which aired from 1978 to 1992.

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