2016 Year End Holiday Letter

December 31, 2016

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Happy Holidays to all our friends and family.  2016 has been another incredibly fun-filled year for us.  During 2016, we took some more trips to some neat places, and attended various autograph/nostalgia conventions along with a couple of other treats.

During the month of February, we celebrated Helen’s Birthday in style with a New York City mini vacation.  While there we dined at the famous ‘Carmines‘ and enjoyed a wonderful Italian Dinner.    We toured and took in the breathtaking views from the top of the ‘One World Trade Center’ Observatory.  What an amazing building!!!  We again enjoyed breakfast at the popular ‘Tick-Tock Diner‘.  We also toured the ‘Whitney Museum‘ and walked the ‘High Line‘.  We took in two Broadway shows, first, ‘Something Rotten‘, and then ‘The Book of Mormon‘.  Helen and I toured ‘Madame Tussauds Wax Museum‘ and before heading home we checked out the ‘Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market‘.

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Helen and Johnny enjoying dinner at ‘Carmines’ in NYC

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Times Square February 2016

In March we again attended the ‘Monstermania Convention` where Helen was thrilled to meet some ‘American Horror Story’ and ‘Walking Dead’ celebrities, and we also met for the second time, Robert Carradine.

April, took us to 4 different conventions, in 4 different states.  First up, for April Fools weekend in Trevose, PA was the first official ‘Three Stooges Convention‘ in close to 20 years.  Helen and I reconnected with many ‘Stooge’ friends and we got to witness the largest gathering of ‘Stooge’ family ever.  Numerous children, nieces & nephews, grandchildren, etc. of the ‘Stooges’ were there to celebrate an ‘April Fools Stooge’ weekend.  Our next convention brought us to Kalamazoo, Michigan for the ‘Great Lakes Nostalgia Convention‘.  We reconnected with many of our ‘Old Time Radio’ friends and we also met again, Paul Petersen &  Kathy Garver.  While we were in the “The Great Lakes State”, Helen and I took a quick trip to Lansing, where we toured the State Capitol Building and a State Museum.  This was our 26th capital visit in our quest for all 50.  Our next April convention brought us to Wilmington, Delaware for ‘Amazicon‘.  We met for the 2nd time, Felix Silla (Cousin Itt), and former Miss America, Lee Meriwether.  I also picked up some neat ‘Banana Splits’ figures to add to my cartoon collection.  Our final April Convention was The first ‘Chiller Theater Convention` of 2016 where met many friends, and got some great photos and autographs from various celebrities including Erik Estrada, Max Baer Jr., Alice Cooper, and a mini ‘Rocky Horror’ reunion.

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Helen and Johnny in Kalamazoo, Michigan for the ‘Great Lakes Nostalgia Convention’

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Helen and Johnny with our dear friends participating in the ‘Trivia Quiz’ at the Great Lakes Nostalgia Convention.  We didn’t win…….but we had Fun!!!!!!!

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Helen and Johnny at the Michigan State Capitol in Lansing, Michigan

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Helen and Johnny with Max Baer Jr.  (Jethro from the ‘Beverly Hillbillies) at the April Chiller Theater Convention.

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Helen and Johnny joining in on the ‘Rocky Horror Picture Show’ reunion!!!!

The month of May brought a milestone for our humble home.  Helen and I celebrated 25 years since I moved into our little Mount Holly Cape Cod home in 1991.  We’ve had many fun times here and we look forward to many more!!!!!  And in June, Helen and I celebrated our 2 year anniversary of our ‘Woo-Hoo Wednesday’ – ‘At Home with Holmsey’ show on the internet radio station, ‘Radio Once More’.  If you haven’t had the chance to listen to us yet, we invite you to tune in on Wednesday evenings, 9PM (eastern time) for some nostalgic fun at www.RadioOnceMore.com.

In July, Helen and tried something different at the ‘Daily Grind‘ coffee shop in downtown Mount Holly, we hosted a musical trivia quiz which we blatantly stole the name from the 1950’s and 1970’s-80’s quiz show, “Name That Tune“.  This event packed the coffee house and everyone had a great time guessing songs from the 1960’s, 70’s, and 80’s, and winning prizes.

Helen and I attended our 2nd ‘Monstermania Convention‘ in August.  We were thrilled to meet a couple of the stars from the TV series ‘Bates Motel’, Curtis Armstrong (Revenge of the Nerds), and Tom Atkins (Halloween III, Creepshow). Also in August, Helen and I happily celebrated Helen being 12 years Cancer Free.  That is worth a major…..Woo-Hoo!!!!!

The month of September took us to Virginia, where we visited parts of the beautiful state and toured the State Capitol Building in Richmond, (our 27th capital visit) and a couple of Museums.  We also visited the Hollywood Cemetery (where the graves of James Monroe and John Tyler are),  and we also toured the Poe Museum dedicated to Edgar Allan Poe.  Our next stop was Charlottesville, where we explored the Charlottesville historical downtown mall, toured the Monticello, the marvelous home of Thomas Jefferson, and the Highland, the home of James Monroe.  Additionally we toured Montpelier, the beautiful home of James Madison in Orange, Virginia.  Helen and I also drove part of the beautiful Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park.  While we were away in Virginia, we had our bathroom renovated and updated.  What a treat to come home to a new bathroom!!!!  We Love it!!!!!

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Helen and Johnny at the Virginia State Capitol in Richmond, Virginia

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Helen and Johnny inside the Virginia State Capitol Building

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Helen at the ‘Monticello’, the home of Thomas Jefferson

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Johnny also at the ‘Monticello’

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The entrance to Shenandoah National Park

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A before and after photo of the Bathroom

Also in September, we attended the Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention in Hunt Valley, MD and had a great time seeing old friends and meeting celebrities including Robert Fuller, Robert Conrad, Bernie Koppel, and Kent McCord.

In the month of October, our ‘Fright Night‘ Presentation at the ‘Daily Grind‘ coffee shop marked our 4th Anniversary of “An Evening of Old Time Radio” and was our 25th Old Time Radio presentation at the ‘Daily Grind‘.  Also in October, we attended our 2nd ‘Chiller Theater‘ Convention of 2016 where we met Ronnie Schell, Kristy McNichol, Ted Lange, Tony Orlando and Dawn, and the legendary Tim Curry.

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Johnny celebrating 4 years of ‘An Evening of Old Time Radio’ at the ‘Daily Grind’

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Helen and Johnny with Tony Orlando and Dawn

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Helen and Johnny with the legendary Tim Curry

Helen and I took a Starr Bus TourMystery Trip‘ in November to the Silver Birches at Ehrhardt’s Waterfront on Lake Wallenpaupack in Hawley, PA, where we enjoyed a wonderful lunch and a great show that paid tribute to veterans.  Our tour also took us to  Wilkes Barre, PA where we toured the historical Luzerne County Courthouse, and The Frederick Stegmaier Victorian Mansion.

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Helen and Johnny on our ‘Mystery Trip’ spending time at Silver Birches at Ehrhardt’s Waterfront on Lake Wallenpaupack

Again, we wish you all a Wonderful Holiday Season and a Happy New Year in 2017.

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Please feel free to continue to stop by the ‘Holmsey Blog‘ (where we recently reached 7,000 visits).  On our blog, I’ll post an occasional article and photos about events/trips, promote our ‘Daily Grind‘ events, and I post past interviews we’ve done on our ‘Woo-Hoo Wednesday’ Radio Shows.  And also, many photos of our outings are posted (or will be posted) on our Flickr page which is linked to our home page at www.JohnnyHolmes.net.  It’s hard to believe we’ve reached the end to another year.  Helen and I are planning a return visit to Las Vegas, Nevada in 2017.

Keep in touch and our very best to all of you!!!!!

Happy Holidays!!!

Helen & Johnny Holmes

 

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“Home For the Holidays” (2016)

December 2, 2016

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Happy Holidays to one and all!!!  Helen and I are honored and proud to again host an installment of “An Evening of Old Time Radio” at the Daily Grind Coffee Shop at 48 High Street in beautiful, downtown Mount Holly, New Jersey.  If any of you wonderful folks happen to be in the vicinity of Mount Holly, New Jersey on Friday, December 9th (6:30PM to approximately 9:00PM), we cordially invite you to stop by and enjoy a tasty beverage and share in the Holiday Season with us as we present, “Home for the Holidays”. We will be presenting three classic Christmas Shows from the “Golden Age of Radio” to get us all in the Holiday Spirit!!!!

Stay for 1, 2, or all 3 shows!!!!  As a special bonus, we are also planning to broadcast the presentation live on www.RadioOnceMore.com the following Wednesday, December 14th at 9PM. This gives you two chances to catch our “Home for the Holidays” presentation live, once at the Daily Grind Coffee Shop, and once on “Radio Once More”.  We have some great Christmas shows, Christmas music, and treats lined up for this special Friday evening event.  Also, rumor has it that there will be a few Give-a-Ways!!!!

Stop by and try something a little different and experience how we were entertained back in the 1930′s, 40′s, and 50′s before television. All you need are your ears and your imagination!!!! Arrive early if you plan on attending, it is a cozy coffee shop with limited seating. Helen and I sincerely wish you all a joyous Holiday Season and we hope to see you Friday evening at the Daily Grind Coffee Shop on December 9th at 6:30PM and on “Radio Once More” on Wednesday evening December 14th at 9PM, and as Tiny Tim said at the end of “A Christmas Carol”, God Bless Us, Everyone!!!

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Joanna Wilson discusses her ‘Triple Dog Dare’ on ‘Radio Once More’

December 1, 2016

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On our ‘Woo-Hoo Wednesday’ radio show ‘At Home with Holmsey’ recently, I again had the honor and pleasure to chat with author and Christmas TV specials expert, Joanna Wilson on the internet radio station, “Radio Once More”.  Joanna and I chatted about her new book project ‘The Triple Dog Dare: Watching–& Surviving–the 24-Hour Marathon of A Christmas StoryThis book is available from the publisher at 1701 Press.

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In the book, Joanna chronicles her personal ‘Triple Dog Dare’ to stay up and watch the entire 24 hour marathon of ‘A Christmas Story’.  During our delightful conversation, Joanna shared some of her personal strategies she used during her quest to stay up for the entire marathon.  It was an amazing discussion about an amazing task, to stay up for the entire 24 hour marathon.  We also played some audio clips from ‘A Christmas Story’ and chatted & reminisced about some of the great scenes in that memorable movie.

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The popular 1983 film ‘A Christmas Story’ is based upon the writings and stories of long time radio legend, Jean Shepherd.  Jean’s novel, “In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash” contains many of the stories that ‘A Christmas Story’ is based upon.  You can listen to some of these memorable stories as told by Jean Shepherd on his radio show from WOR, as originally broadcasted Christmas Eve, 1974.  Enjoy!!!!

Joanna and I also discussed the 1973 made for TV version along with original 1947 version of “Miracle on 34th Street“.  We also played some audio clips and talked about some classic Christmas TV Specials, including, ‘The Littlest Angel‘ (1969), ‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer’ (1964), and Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966).  This year marks the 50th Birthday of the Grinchs’ first appearance on television.

All of these titles and so much more are all covered in Joanna’s book, ‘Tis the Season TV: The Encyclopedia of Christmas-Themed Episodes, Specials and Made-For-TV Movies‘.  As I’ve said before, this book an amazing volume about Christmas TV Shows & Specials and should be on everyone’s shelf that enjoys classic Christmas TV programming.  You can purchase this wonderful book and read many of Joanna’s blog entries at www.ChristmasTVHistory.com.

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Below I have posted our discussion that we aired on November 30th on ‘Radio Once More’.  Thanks again to Joanna Wilson for taking the time to chat with us!!!!  Enjoy and Woo-Hoo!!!!!!

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Helen, Joanna Wilson, and Holmsey. together for a visit in Joanna’s hometown of Akron, Ohio.