for is right here:
In any case, the show came and went in the '70s. Jack Miller died in the mid-'90s, I believe. KDNL became our Fox station in the early days of that network. When the network had kid's programming mornings and afternoons, there was a girl and mascot character who hosted the afternoon time, called "Katie and Al Fox." Get it?
KPLR-11: Captain 11's Showboat. Captain 11 was hosted by local legend Harry Fender. Harry worked for KMOX radio and CBS Radio for decades as host and performer. In the '60s and '70s, KMOX Radio suspended their local swap/trade call-in show during the holidays for the chance for kids to call in to Harry portraying Santa Claus directly from the North Pole. Captain 11 came and went in the 1960s and showed Three Stooges shorts and had Moe, Larry, and Curly Joe on in person many times. This is when the Stooges toured the country and made movies. It was a very popular show, especially when the boys came to town. Here is a link to Harry's radio career: stlradio.com/hof-legacy-2.htm. KPLR became the leading kid's station in town after while with "Team 11," a group of singing teens who hosted the afternoon Kids WB block in the '80s and '90s After the other stations gave up on kids programming, many of my friends and I watched Looney Tunes, Ultraman, Gilligan's Island, etc. on Channel 11.
Jack Miller actually developed his "Mr. Patches" character way before he became the host of KDNL's "Little Castle". He premeired the character on Monday, September 25, 1961 on St. Louis' KTVI Channel 2. Here is an ad for that show.
In the later 60's he was host of "The Treehouse Gang", also on KTVI before he moved over to KDNL. His "Little Castle" show became simply "Mr. Patches" in the fall of 1970, and by 1973 there was a waiting list of birthday parties that was reputed to stretch to 1980! He used to end each singing of "Happy Birthday" with a snappy "Cha-cha-cha!" Here is a shot of him circa 1972.
Cliff St. James (Corky) had two programs on KSD, "Corky the Clown" and "Corky's Colorama" where he would have puppets interact with his guests. Sometimes he had shows several times in a day on Saturdays, and sometimes back to back! Here is a shot of Cliff as Corky, and a clip from "Colorama".
Harry Fender aka "Captain 11" had the longest running show after Corky, which went from around 1959 (when the "Three Stooges" shorts were released to TV, and fantastic ratings), untill around 1968, when "Captian 11's Showboat" was replaced on KPLR by "Dark Shadows". Here's a publicity pic from KPLR of Harry as the Cap.
weekday afternoon in the St. Louis
These images and the clip are courtesy of the Media Archives Collection of the St. Louis Public Library.
I was actually one of the kids who celebrated his birthday on Mr. Patches. In my neighborhood, it was an incredibly popular show - and I remember my parents telling me about that insanely long list for on-air parties with him. I remember one of the sponsors being Red Goose shoes... I distinctly remember one major character on the show (who can forget Sydney the rubber chicken and his booming Tarzan yell, flying in on a string).
As the birthday kid,
I remember a bunch of promotional "gifts" I got for being on
the show as well as the fact I barely got time to sample my cake or ice
cream because of the show's quick LIVE pacing. My dad stayed home during
the taping and recorded the show on an old cassette tape. It's long since
gone bad and become landfill material, but I remember listening to it
periodically to relive the fun time it was.
Another popular St Louis kids show was The Wranglers Club. It ran from 1955 to 1963. It was sponsored by Adams Milk. The show's host was named Harry Gibbs and he played a dairy cowboy named "Texas Bruce."
- Thanks, Jim Struckel
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