With Seattle’s TV clown J.P. Patches’ passing on Sunday, our editorial board remembers the local television we watched as kids. Most of us didn’t grow up in Seattle. The one writer who did, Bruce Ramsey, watched Brakeman Bill, not J.P. But we all watched television, and we honor the great local programming local stations still did for children back then.

From John Saul:

I could have been one of the kids in this photo taken from a web page dedicated to Mary Ellen Colchagoff, who hosted “Fun Farm” on WSPD in Toledo, Ohio, in the early 1950s. All I remember about the visit to “Fun Farm” with my older sister is that my mother made me wear shorts, an embarrassing insistence that she repeated a couple of years later on my first day of school. Every other boy at school had on blue jeans, of course.

From Lance Dickie:

TV kid shows in Portland were a big deal. The Mickey Mouse Club was the national powerhouse, but locally we had Mr. Moon, then Mr. Duffy and his Cartoon Circus, cowboy Heck Harper, and the closest J.P. Patches clown persona,Rusty Nails. Later came Ramblin’ Rod and Addie Bobkins. By then I was watching American Bandstand and Lloyd Thaxton.


From Sharon Pian Chan:

“Romper Room” was what I watched growing up in Cerritos, Calif. When I was seven, my piano class was invited to play the soundtrack from Disney’s “Snow White” in an episode. Our moms were asked to make us costumes like Snow White’s seven dwarfs. Everyone else looked just like Sleepy and Grumpy. One even had the same spectacles that Doc wore. I felt like a new dwarf named Mortified as I played the intro to “Heigh-Ho” on the “Romper Room” set.