Grand Ole Opry, New Channels Coming To Cincinnati TV

Dec 27, 2019

Update 10:15 a.m. Monday, Dec. 30: The TV network changes scheduled for today have been delayed until later in the week. 

Scripps-owned Bounce network will debut on WCPO-TV's Channel 9.5 on Wednesday, according to WCPO-TV. Bounce will vanish from WXIX-TV's Channel 19.2 at noon Wednesday, Jan. 1, when Fox 19 shuffles its digital channel lineup.

Heroes & Icons disappeared today from low-power WKRP, and replaced with Start TV. WKRP programmers say H&I is moving to WXIX-TV to replace Bounce, but Fox 19 folks aren't confirming yet.

On Jan. 1, WXIX-TV also adds a fourth digital channel, the Circle country music network. It's expected the new WXIX-TV lineup will be Circle on Channel  19.3, Grit (moving to 19.4 from 19.3), Ion (moving to 19.5 from 19.4), which would leave Channel 19.2 for H&I.

If all goes as planned, WCPO-TV will swap Bounce and Laff on Friday. Bounce will move to 9.3, and Laff will go to 9.5.

Viewers who watch TV with an antenna must rescan their TVs on Wednesday and Friday to get the new channels.

Original post Friday, Dec. 27: New digital multiplex channels will premiere Monday, Dec. 30 – and a couple change stations – as WXIX-TV, WCPO-TV and WKRP (WBQC-TV) adjust their lineups for the new year.

Bounce TV, owned by Scripps, will switch from WXIX-TV's Channel 19.2 to Scripps' WCPO-TV's Channel 9.5 on Monday. Bounce airs Law & Order, Without A Trace, Living Single, Moesha, Scandal, Bernie Mac, A Different World and other shows aimed at African-American viewers.

Clint Eastwood and Don Hight on 'Rawhide' in 1962,
Credit Public Domain

To fill the void, WXIX-TV has grabbed the Heroes & Icons channel from WKRP for the new year.

H&I has all four Star Trek series (The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Enterprise and the 1960s original) plus NYPD Blue, Hill Street Blues, Numb3rs, Nash Bridges, Renegade, JAG; the original MacGyver; classic westerns like James Garner's Maverick, Clint Eastwood's Rawhide, The High Chaparral, Have Gun Will Travel; and a mix of TV superheroes like Batman, Adventures of Superman and The Greatest American Hero.

WXIX-TV also adds Circle, a country music channel from Gray Television, which bought Channel 19 last year, and the Opry Entertainment Group. 

Circle will "feature original programming centered around artists and their lives on and off the stage ... (and) includes the return of a weekly broadcast of the Grand Ole Opry, the show that made country music famous," according to Fox 19.  

Circle will debut on Channel 19.3 on Wednesday, Jan. 1, according to promotions airing on WXIX-TV. 

Adam West (right) starred as Batman with Burt Ward as Robin on ABC in the 1960s.
Credit Public Domain

WKRP on Monday adds Start TV on Channel 25.9. It carries reruns of The Good Wife, Touched By An Angel, Medium, Crossing Jordan, Cold Case, The Closer, Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman; Cagney and Lacey, Ghost Whisperer, Joan of Arcadia. Family Law and Profiler.

WCPO-TV's digital changes will come in two stages, says Jeff Brogan, Channel 9 vice president and general manager.

"It's a bit complicated because we need to get in new equipment and then work with the cable companies once everything is set and ready to go," Brogan says.

On Monday, Dec. 30, the station's temporary lineup will be WCPO/ABC Channel 9.1; Court TV 9.2; Laff 9.3; Court TV Mysteries 9.4; Bounce 9.5. 

On Friday, Bounce will go to 9.3, with Laff going to 9.5 The swap will put Bounce on the Cincinnati Bell Fioptics cable system, which carries only Channels 9.1, 9.2 and 9.3.

(Cincinnati Bell is providing inaccurate information to its customers, saying that Fioptics is dropping Laff because "the local broadcaster for Laff TV (Channel 241) is losing rights to the channel." Brogan says that is not true. "We still have it. Customers will only be able to get it over-the-air with an antenna. Spectrum and Fioptics only take three of our channels 9.1, 9.2, 9.3. Since Laff is moving to 9.5,  it won't be on local cable. We made the decision to put Bounce on 9.3," he says.)

Scripps also owns Laff, Court TV and Court Mysteries.

Also on Monday, WKRP will re-number all 12 of its networks as subchannels for Channel 25. The original station launched 29 years ago by founder Elliott Block. He died in November. Four WKRP networks are still listed today for Channel 20, which went off the air two years ago.

"Why are we making the change? The change simplifies our brand and honors Elliott's original vision of Channel 25," says Matthew Gray, WKRP programmer.

The Channel 25 lineup on Monday: Cozi 25.1; This TV 25.2; Get TV 25.3; Jewelry Television 25.4; Light TV 25.5; Sonlife Broadcasting Network (SBN) 25.6; Home Shopping Network 25.7; Shop HQ 25.8, Start TV 25.9; Movies! 25.10, Decades 25.11; and Quest 25.12.

Ten of the channels are carried by Fioptics: Jewelry Television Channel 2; This TV 259; Movies! 261; Sonlife Broadcasting Network 25.6; Decades 289; Cozi 290; Get TV 292; Light TV 293; Quest 298; Start TV 299.

Spectrum cable only has one WKRP subchannel, Cozi on Channel 189.