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Dan Gross: Is canceling annual Unity Day a bad sign for WDAS?

SOME 105.3 WDAS-FM staffers areconcerned for the future of the station and cite the recent cancellation of its annual Unity Day event as one sign of trouble.

SOME 105.3 WDAS-FM staffers areconcerned for the future of the station and cite the

recent cancellation of its annual Unity Day event as one sign of trouble.

"To get rid of Unity Day was stupid. How are you going to replace that revenue," one veteran 'DAS employee told us yesterday.

"What's next, Powerhouse, the Q concerts?" wondered the staffer about whether Clear Channel Radio, which recently laid off thousands of staffers nationwide, would cancel Power 99 and Q102's annual signature events.

WDAS recently announced that "due to the difficult economic times," the station could not produce Unity Day this year. Last week Clear Channel announced that John Rohm, who manages its stations in Pittsburgh, would also be market manager of the Philadelphia cluster, which consists of WDAS, Power 99, Q102, Radio 104.5, Rumba 1480, and My106.1.

"WDAS is one of the top stations in the market and we're exactly where we want to be," spokeswoman Loraine Ballard Morrill said yesterday. "I can tell you with a high degree of certainty that there are no plans to make any changes to the station. The decision not to hold Unity Day this year was simply a reflection of these very challenging economic times," she continued.

VP Biden brings bride to doctor

Vice President Joe Biden, accompanied his wife, Jill Biden, to the Rothman Institute in Center City, where she had a consultation yesterday with an orthopaedist for some shoulder pain. After the appointment the couple lunched at Saloon (750 S. 7th), where they have been regulars for years. There was a huge Secret Service presence inside and outside the restaurant. The vice president had angel-hair pasta with spicy tomato sauce while his sore-shouldered-spouse chose gnocchi with tomato cream sauce. They shared a tomato and mozzarella salad.

The VP also charmed a table of older women on his way out when he stopped to talk with them.

Canseco's girl

looking for a fight

So Jose Canseco and five-time Wing Bowl champion Bill "El Wingador" Simmons are set to fight July 24 in Damon Feldman's Celebrity Boxing 10, and now Canseco's girlfriend, poker pro Heidi Northcott, is seeking a challenger. The 5-foot-3, 110-pound blond beauty will take on a female challenger under 120 pounds. Interested women can e-mail Feldman at


Feldman's next bout, Saturday, pits Michael Lohan, bad-boy father of actress Lindsay Lohan, against "Survivor" Jonny Fairplay at the Ramada Inn, in Essington. Tickets will be available at the door. At 8:30 p.m. tomorrow, Lohan and Fairplay weigh in at the Ramada, where Fairplay's wife, Michelle Deighton, a former "America's Next Top Model" contestant, hosts a ring-card-girl contest and where wrestler and South Philly crime-fighter Billy

Reil, who twice apprehended

robbery suspects, will celebrate

his 30th birthday.

She survives Japanese

game show

Kimberly Whittaker, a sixth-

grade math and social-studies teacher at West Philly's Richard Allen Prep Charter School, says taping "I Survived a Japanese Game Show" was the best experience of her life. Whittaker, 26, who was born in Jamaica and moved to West Philly when she was 8, was excited to have "experienced another culture." The show premiered last night on ABC.

Whittaker, an Overbrook and Temple grad has modeled since she was 12 and plans to move to Los Angeles this summer. She'll appear in a fashion show Saturday during the Kimmel Center's Summer Solstice.

PGN's Mark Segal fractures heel

Speedy recovery wishes to Phil-adelphia Gay News publisher Mark Segal, nursing his left heel, which he recently fractured in a ladder mishap. Segal used crutches when speaking at Penn's Landing for Philly Pride last weekend, and says that he just had a wheelchair delivered and that boyfriend Jason Villemez has been "wonderful" caring for him. Segal will have surgery on June 25.

Actors hang out at Aloft

Jamie Hector and Nicole "Hoopz" Alexander hung out at

the Aloft hotel while both were in town shooting "The Gift," around Southwest Philly. Hector, who played Marlo Stanfield on "The Wire," and Hoopz, of VH1's "Flavor of Love, enjoyed the sounds of DJ Mental, who spins Saturdays.

Steve Bucci signs Phillies book

Steve Bucci will sign copies of

his "Steve Bucci's Totally Phillies Trivia," just released by Camino Books, at 5 p.m. tomorrow at Chickie's & Pete's (15th & Packer). The former CBS 3 sports reporter, later appeared briefly on Comcast SportsNet, but is currently without a television gig.

Charity cancer walk at Chalfont

950 ESPN's Mike Missanelli will be on hand Sunday for Red Tiger Tae Kwon Do's Father's Day cancer walk and wiffleball tournament at Chalfont Playground in the Northeast. Registration is at 9 a.m. and Kane Kalas, son of the late, great Harry Kalas, will sing the National Anthem.

Radio veteran Kim Douglas and state Rep. Denny O'Brien are expected as well. For more info contact Jim Roach at 267-738-8698. *

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