Since 1988 Michael Croke has lived a double life.
Monday-Friday you would found him at school as a teacher and now principal at Catherine McAuley Catholic Primary School.
But on Saturday mornings he was the first voice people heard in Orange when they turned on the radio.
Mr Croke hosted the Saturday morning slot, full of community events, comedy and banter with sport and gardening on ABC Radio.
But now he has now hung up his microphone.
The man who woke rural NSW on Saturday mornings wants his weekends back.
“It wasn’t an easy decision,” he said.
“I had many years of a 4.30 Saturday alarm.
“I wanted to rediscover my weekends.
“I want my weekends to start on Friday afternoon and not Saturday lunchtime.”
Mr Croke said radio had been a long time ambition.
“I always had a passion for radio from a very young age,” he said.
“I wanted to be a radio announcer.”
However, when he turned to teaching the radio gig took a back step.
“My passion was always teaching,” he said.
In 1988 he started providing a 10-minute report on national AFL to a country NSW audience that largely didn’t embrace the game.
But that soon developed into a chance to host the show until midday.
He described his show as a ‘weekend magazine’ providing music, regional sport, interviews about country shows and a gardening segment still done by Orange mayor Reg Kidd.
“It’s what the people want to listen to on a Saturday morning,” he said.
“They don’t want something heavy, so I avoided politics.”
He said there had been a few hiccups along the way.
“We’ve had a few technical things, outside broadcasts are always fraught with danger.
“You could be set up in Cobar, you’d be the talk of the town, you’d be lauded, and you never got heard.”
He said more teachers than students had heard his program.
“They are probably not my demographic,” he said.
Mr Croke said he wanted to continue in broadcasting in a different role.
“I have enjoyed every second of it, it’s been a great unwinder,” he said.
“I’d like to think my radio career’s not over.
“I hope in the future I can further my broadcasting career.”