MPR weekend changes: More BBC, less ‘Splendid Table’

Bestill your churning stomachs, Lynne Rossetto Kasper fans — KNOW is not getting rid of “Splendid Table,” just axing a Sunday 6 a.m. rebroadcast. It’s one of several weekend schedule changes beginning Saturday, Oct. 10.

Those of you who rise between 6 and 7 a.m. on weekends will wake up to British intonations; MPR is extending BBC programming an hour. On Saturdays, MPR will dump “It’s Only a Game,” the sports show from Boston’s WBUR.

According to a company memo, “One of our ongoing strategies is to bring more news to the weekend schedule, and this is one way to do it.”

Programming director Steve Nelson called “Game” a “fine show, but BBC is a better fit with people waking up in the morning.”

Krista Tippett’s “Speaking of Faith” Sunday rebroadcast is also getting knocked around a bit, bumped from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Pop-culture show “Studio 360,” which had run at 10, will be moved up to 9 p.m. Terry Gross’ greatest hits, “Fresh Air Weekend” will go bye-bye.

In the newly opened Sunday 7 p.m. slot, MPR will expand its “News Presents” series. Nelson says the idea is to make a home for limited-run productions, such as science show Radio Lab and the storytelling series The Moth. MPR hasn’t previously aired the latter.

Nelson pinkie-swears the moves were not financial, nor an early response to new Personal People Meter ratings technology. It’s interesting that two of the rebroadcasts being dumped/demoted, “Table” and “Faith” are produced by American Public Media, MPR’s sibling entity.

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