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AROUSE OSU students make waves from beneath Buckeye Donuts

The leaders behind AROUSE OSU, Joe Henson (left) and Grayson Kelly (right), host their own radio shows from the basement of Buckeye Donuts each week. Henson hosts “Capricious Cacophony” every Tuesday and Kelly hosts “Fireside Chats” every Monday. Credit: Ghezal Barghouty | Arts Editor

Live from the Buckeye Donuts basement, two Ohio State students are working to make radio great again.

Headed by Grayson Kelly, president and second-year in strategic communications, and Joe Henson, vice president and a fourth-year in marketing, the Amateur Radio Organization for Undergraduate Student Entertainment is a student-run campus station.

The student radio club is organized to retain freedom of expression as a necessary function of quality entertainment and maintain a respectful meta-discourse within an increasingly polarized world, according to the AROUSE mission statement.

During the school year, the programming holds as many as 10 DJs per day, each with a one-hour time slot. Programming ranges from alternative, metal, politics, comedy and electronic exposés.

The radio station holds 75 shows and an online magazine updated monthly with more than 90 Ohio State students involved and growing, Kelly said.

“As the station grows in size and content grows with that, we are being taken more seriously by the week it seems,” Kelly said. “Throughout the entire semester, people are still coming to us or sending emails about AROUSE for feature purposes or for the interest in working with us.”

Chris Tomson, the lead drummer from the indie rock band Vampire Weekend, was one artist who specifically requested to work with AROUSE after following the work it has done.

Of the many shows AROUSE hosts, two popular shows come from Kelly and Henson.

Every Monday at 7 p.m., Kelly hosts Fireside Chats. Kelly said he got inspiration for his show from former U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who originated “Fireside Chats” as a way to provide the public with updates on the state of the nation. Kelly uses his show to give updates on Columbus.

“Every college radio station needs a fireside chat,” he said. “I take on a new guest every week to change things up and keep my show unique with fresh information.”

Henson is the host of “Capricious Cacophony,” airing every Tuesday from 7 to 8 p.m.

Previously, Henson’s show was known for taking popular hit songs and playing different cover versions by different artist. This year, however, Henson changed the format artists by having a new guest every week to host the show.

“Episode by episode I just bring in a friend and just made them host the show, while I just oversee,” Henson said. “Since we are just a free-form internet radio station, we are not bound to any FCC regulations, and we are given the platform to have freedom with any show at AROUSE.”


  1. Yes, but why? What makes Buckeye donuts the venue of choice?!

    • As the station grows, we’re looking to secure on-campus space – until then, the club has lived off the generosity of local businesses like Rendezvous Hair Salon, Evolved Tattoo & Body Art, and Buckeye Donuts. They’re a legendary campus spot, always been kind, and love supporting independent art.

  2. Not linked in the article, but AROUSE collects a ton of student writing and other odds and ends on http://www.arouseosu.com

    I was a part of this club at OSU, I live in Texas now, I still read it along with the rest of my docket of music press.

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