WMAQ is adding an hour to its 6 a.m. Saturday newscast, which runs from 5-7 a.m., leading into Weekend Today, which has been a staple on NBC’s Saturday schedule since September 1992. WMAQ retains its 9-10 a.m. newscast, with NBC Kids fare (FCC-mandated E/I programming), airing from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
WMAQ is also adding more hours on Sundays, with the newscast now running from 5 to 7 a.m. followed by Weekend Today, then another hour of news from 8 to 9 a.m., followed by Meet The Press at 9 a.m., then another half-hour of news at 10 a.m., to fill the void left vacant by the departure of The Chris Matthews Show, which is going out of production.
Earlier, WLS-TV announced an expansion of its weekend news schedule, while WBBM returned to the daypart last year. WGN-TV added a 6 a.m. Saturday newscast a few years ago, while WFLD-TV does not air any weekend newscasts.
The moves comes as local stations are seeking to capitalize on political advertising revenue, with a hotly contested Governor’s race expected next year in the primaries and general election. Translation = you’re going to see more annoying campaign ads.
But on the upside, you’ll see more Cheryl Scott. And that’s not a bad deal.
Edited at 9:22 p.m. om 2013-07-09 (Susan Carlson info added.)