In late May, KUER host Doug Fabrizio announced that the station’s long running program RadioWest was taking a summer hiatus to rethink and retool the show. Doug and his team spent the summer brainstorming, listening to other shows and talking with listeners about the elements of the show that are most important to them. Here’s more from Doug:
RadioWest has changed a lot during its 18 years on the air at KUER. It really began as a weekly, evolving out of our first magazine-format show. (Anyone out there remember Friday Edition?) Most of you started paying attention when we settled into being a daily at 11 a.m. We were there for a long time and it was disorienting for some of you when we shifted to 9 a.m. I learned then that not only is change difficult for most, but that people relied on us and had certain expectations and standards.
The way we’ve told stories has also changed over the years. We started a film series, we’ve done radio theater, we created a documentary unit called RadioWest Films. Last year, we began a live event series featuring conversations about race and equity.
During RadioWest’s summer hiatus, we thought a lot about new opportunities to keep growing and to focus on the things you told us you loved most about the show: in-depth explorations, eclectic ideas and storytelling.
We knew we could do those things better as a weekly program. Don’t get me wrong: Daily shows can be wonderful. But here’s the thing: Daily programs are also very challenging. They require a level of energy and preparation that leaves little room to make every episode feel as meaningful and surprising to listeners as possible.
To do that, RadioWest needs to change again.
Starting Sept. 13, RadioWest will become a weekly program, airing on Fridays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Over those two hours, we plan to cover local issues, culture and breaking news, followed by a deep-dive conversation about how our world works. We hope you’ll spend part of your Friday with RadioWest. Of course, not everyone will be able to hear the show at that time. So we have a few other options for you:
• A one-hour version will air Fridays at 7 p.m.
• RadioWest is joining KUER’s popular weekend lineup Saturdays at 11 a.m., following Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me!
• And the show will be available on-demand: wherever you listen to podcasts, at RadioWest.org and on the KUER app.
I get a chance to talk to listeners from time to time. They wonder how I manage to read all those books and ask how the summer is going. I cannot begin to tell you how grateful I am to hear someone say they miss us, or that this place needs a show like ours. Well, since you asked, the summer was great, thanks.
I feel excited and recharged — and hopeful that you’ll give this new chapter of the show a chance. I’m glad you’ll be with us as we explore new territory.