Original Song by fan Ray Powell
Rexing Family Photo
Top: early 60's Legend City Photo with Ladmo and Wallace.
Bottom: Recreation by Rexing family 2009
Wade Bray with cast (1964)
2007 at W&L Exhibit
Dan Horn with a
Wallace Watchers T-Shirt (2007)
Vicki A Jones at the W&L
Exhibit Opening (Sept. 2007)
with Wallace and Pat
Bob Pollard with Ladmo Jim Sutton with Wallace
at his 75th Birthday (Dec 06)
DJ, Kelli, Tiffany, and Jeremy Jones Live on 1983 Show David Culling
AZ State Fair (24 Oct 2004)
Ladmo with Todd
and Marchelle (2 Feb 1980)
Wallace with a check from WallaceWatchers.com to the Arizona Humane Society (Feb 07) Steve Hoza and Mike Condello
at the W&L Stage Dedication
Staff of the O'Odham-Piipaash Language Program at the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community Marge Wright of Pets on Parade
with Wallace (Feb 07)
Rob Cook and Ladmo Zac Thompson at
W&L Exhibit (2007)
Cast with Gov. Rose Mofford Tammy Hulfachor with Wallace at his 75th Birthday (Dec 06) Frank Farfara as "Frankmo" with Ladmo and Wallace Steve Hoza and Wallace
Tom Dickson and Wallace
Barrie Thompson (1972)
Barrie Thompson (1972)
Tanner Nas at the W&L Exhibit
Opening (Sept. 2007) with a Wallace Watchers T-Shirt
Dan Griffin and Rhonda Macro at Citrus Valley Playhouse Tribute to W&L (2008 Julia Jones at Citrus Valley Playhouse Tribute to W&L (2008) Frank Farfara with Pat
1960's at Park Central Mall
Ben Hammer dressing up like Ladmo(2011)
May 15, 2009
Today one of my lifelong dreams came true (I'm serious): I got to meet Bill Thompson aka Wallace, Wallboy, and Wall, of the Phoenix "kids" TV show, Wallace & Ladmo. Wallace signed my books and we had a nice chat about the good old days. I told him that I was a member of the Facebook group "I'm bitter about not winning a Ladmo Bag." He said "Feed the birds" for me in his Mr. Grudgmeyer voice and I did "Plant the plant" for him in return. I also mentioned that I was almost crushed at Bill's Records in Christown trying to see Hubcap and the Wheels back in the '60s. And reminded him of the time that he (dressed as local car salesman Jack Ross) ran down Ladmo (dressed as Jack’s wife Acquanetta) via a cardboard car. I did a little of the original W&L theme song for him and we talked about the pre-Ladmo bag days when a lucky kid got to select a toy from the Toy Cottage. I thanked Wallace for all the years of brilliance and said that I learned from him that it is OK to be both smart and silly.
- Susanne Frantz
I'd like to share a cherished reminescence:
In the summer of 1964 after my freshman year at ASU (I lived in Phoenix from 1963 to 1976) I worked at KPHO-TV as a floor crewman, mostly running the mike boom for the Marge Condon Show and Wallace and Ladmo Show. In the latter, all kinds of fun went on too during the commercial breaks, as you may imagine... One of Wallace's gags on me was to make a sudden lunge for the boom mike and pull it into on-air view; I got pretty good at anticipating him and yanking it away just enough just in time. In one commercial break I made some crack about a new Ladmo allied with Gerald. Instantly (just time to put on a Ladmo costume), Bill, Lad and Pat McMahon put me into the show and someone else took over the mike boom. I (all of us) totally winged it... the new Ladmo was trying to teach children about science and arachnids and such. This continued for about three days and Wallboy put the audience to a vote for the old vs. new Ladmo. The kids across the street from me told all their friends who told all theirs, and there was actually a vote of something like 50 for the new Ladmo, of course totally overwhelmed by the vote for the real Ladmo. I still have a photo taken then of Lad and me in our Ladmo outfits. During one of our "winged" skits where I was carrying on about encyclopedias or some such thing, Richard Rawls, the station manager (who had originally hired me), came in and was having the hardest time to keep from laughing out loud. I seem to recall that there was another show started about then called the Harvey Trundle Show, where Harvey was a hobo. Wallace and Ladmo were also involved. There were more boom-mike-grabbing attempts... it was a unique, wonderful time and I'm delighted to have been in a small way involved. Once that summer I played the theater pipe organ in the Orpheum, now Palace West, for a live W & L stage show. WARMEST WISHES to all!!! ...Remember Jack Ross and Acquanetta, also Channel 5 staples?
I lived in Phoenix during my "tween" years--12-14, and watched Wallace and Ladmo religiously and didn't feel guilty about it--and I consider myself pretty smart! The writing was brilliant and my grown-up brother-in-law used to watch it with me and we howled
at the dry political humor of skits like the right-wing scion Captain Super...I grew up, moved to California, worked in the entertainment industry for the last 13 years or so, and have tried to tell people in Hollywood about the show--and it defies description! If you tell people W&L was a kid show, it just doesn't do justice to it.
But I tell you all that, so I can tell you this little story about my brush with the Ladmo Bag. I was working as a custodian at a high school on the Central Coast of California while going to school. I used to hang out with Dave (no last name to preserve his anonymity), the wrestling coach, who was a huge burly man. Somehow we got talking about childhood, he mentioned that he had lived in Phoenix during the '70s...the conversation trailed off as we each had our
own memories--then simultaneously we looked at each other and shouted out "Wallace and Ladmo"!! We laughed about how great the show was, then Dave, this really tough guy, got kinda quiet and shy, looked at the floor with a little smile, looked up and said: "I
won a Ladmo bag."
"Get outta here!!" I roared.
- Ronald Honn
On February 2, 1980, I was invited to the wedding of a woman I worked with at Diamond's (now Dillard's) central offices. Her name was Joanie and she was marrying Ladmo's son, Robin. She told me to bring my children, Marchelle (Marci) and Todd, who were who were 10 and 7. At the reception, both Wallace and Ladmo were there. Joanie encouraged the kids to have their picture taken with her new father-in-law, Ladmo, insisting he wouldn't mind. Of course, I was concerned about intruding on his big event, but sure enough, when we approached him, he was absolutely delightful and obliging. Marchelle and Todd were elated (picture attached).
Later that year, they created a playhouse from an appliance box (picture attached). We were moving from an apartment in Tempe to a brand new house in Chandler, so they gave it the same house address, 919, and a doorbell. They mailed the picture to the Wallace & Ladmo and were later called to come on the show and each get a Ladmo Bag (picture attached).
I didn't take my camera to the studio, thinking I probably wouldn't be able to use it there anyway, but I did take a picture of the TV when their appearance was later broadcast. The quality of the picture is marginal but the memory is top notch.
Marchelle, now 38, is Executive Director of the Pasadena (CA) Ronald McDonald House and Todd, 34, is a Low Voltage Technician in Hollywood CA. Both are married with children.
Your website is a terrific salute to two of Phoenix's all-time great local entertainers.
Thanks for all of your hard work. It is very much appreciated!
- Eileen Glick
I'll never forget it. It was my eighth grade year at Pueblo Elementary in 1979 (Scottsdale) and we had a small fair on the school grounds. As yearbook photographer for the Pueblo Sunset I was assigned to cover the fair. Wallace, Ladmo and Gerald were scheduled to appear in our cafeteria/multipurpose room. I asked to get back stage to get a photo and it was a madhouse. Apparently they arrived late for the show and I got to "see them out of character" -- putting on their costumes and frantically getting ready. Right before they went on stage someone introduced me and said I needed a photo. I can't remember which one said "make it quick" and I actually was a little concerned, I mean, these weren't the guys I saw on TV, they were human. But magic happened as soon as I raised the camera, they all immediately went into character - McMahon gave his Gerald grin... and the attached photo is the result. One shot is all I had, and this is what made it into the yearbook that year.
Cast Photo by Scott Cancelosi
This is not the end of my story. For years I kept the small proof photo and had it framed throughout high school and college. Only those from Arizona knew who these guys were and I would tell them the story about my brush with KPHO TV5 greatness.
In 1992 I attended a "Salute to the Troops" event which Ladmo and Jodi did a show for the kids. They were already off the air at this point, but parents brought their kids out to see the legendary "Ladmo"
I brought the photo with me and showed it to Ladmo. It actually brought tears to his eyes and I was just about to give it to him, but instead I had him autograph it!
What is really strange is that I visit Ladmo often at the cemetery at which he is buried. My two sets of grandparents are buried about 15 feet on either side of him. So I walk by to visit my other grandparents and I stop by touch his marker and it ALWAYS brings a smile to my face.
Keep up the good work with the site!
- Scott "Scooter" Cancelosi
I won, I am told, the last Ladmo bag to be given out at a performance. My credit union (Arizona Grocers CU) held an annual meeting where Ladmo and his daughter were the guest of honor and performers. I had to blow up and pop a balloon faster than any other contestant. Trust me I am still living down the full of hot air jokes.
I was on the show twice as a school (Madison Park) spokesperson at the Westward Ho Hotel around 1961. I won a knights costume from the Toy Cottage. I will include the knight picture at a later date.
Bob Pollard with Ladmo
I would like to have a picture taken with you. If you are going to be out, in some venue, and I can attend I would appreciate a heads up. Nothing like a Kodak moment.
I have seen the play several times and had the luck being there the day Jerry Calango had lunch with President Clinton. The opening scene of the second act was history. Jerry appeared in the time machine and stated he was a sports mogul. He then identified the pro teams in Phoenix, when Ladmo said laughing, "next you'll be telling me you had lunch with the President."
I didn't Pat's autograph that night at the Herberger, but some guy name Boffo, signed "it’s a buck" in my HaHa!HoHo!HaHa!HeeHee!.
- Bob Pollard
Left: Bob Pollard and Clarice. Right: Ladmo
My name is Jim Sutton and I watched the Wallace & Ladmo show in the mid 1960s and early 1970s.
Last month, I attended the two 75th birthday parties for Wallace held at the Changing Hands and Poisoned Pen bookstores. It was at Poisoned Pen where I was able to get a person to take a picture of Wallace and me with my own camera.
In the picture, you'll notice that Wallace is holding a copy of The Kersten Bros. book. I found that book in a bookstore back in 2001 and immediately snatched it up.
A couple of years later (2004?), I was able to get Wallace to sign it when he was a guest at a toy show in Glendale at the Civic Center. At the Changing Hands party, I was able to get Pat to sign the book (he signed it "Gerald"). At the Poisoned Pen party, Wallace re-signed and dated my book. I thought the pic (taken 12/20/2006) would be a neat/nice addition to the "Fans and Their Photos" page.
There was a professional photographer there as well covering the event. I don't know who he was or who he was taking pictures for, but he's the one who took the picture using my camera. He also took similar pictures with his own equipment.
(The photographer metioned above was David Culling)
Jim Sutton with Wallace
at Wallace's 75th Birthday (Dec 2006)
I wanted to take a moment and say thank you for what you have done. I attended Saturday (Mesa Historical Exhibit Opening, 2007) with two of my 4 children, and we were able to have a picture signed by Wallace and ‘Gerald’ that was taken over 23 years ago on a visit to the show. My daughter had won a Ladmo bag, so I called my sister in law and she along with her two children and my two (we both had more kids later on) drove up to the show. Ladmo wasn’t there because he was looking for his dog that had run off the night before due to a pretty fierce electrical storm.
I was so pumped and GIDDY like a school girl all day, and night.
Thanks for keeping the wonderful memories alive, and helping us to build more J
Vicki A Jones
DJ, Kelli, Tiffany and
Jeremy Jones (1983)
AZTV had Pat McMahon host a "clip" show and chosen letters to the show won a Ladmo Bag. In it I explained how much I missed the Christmas show's. I did so and hoped hoped they would be shown on this new show. August 2004 I was siiting with my son in my living room and it just so happened Wallace made an apperance at the end of the show sitting on Grudgemyers bench when my named appeared on the screen. I saw the look on my sons face and just as I' m sure I would have -years ago when I was a kid- we jumped up and down in a circle yelling "I WON !, I WON !.
I had a friend at work who had won one earlier that year and he told me you pick it up at the AZTV studios and the receptionist had given it to him.
I was instructed the same way by the studio staff via telephone. I do'nt live close but I assure you I made it to the studio in record time. The receptionist confirmed who I was and went to the back office and to my surprise out came Pat McMahon with my bag. he was kind but quick and told me how I just missed Wallace by seconds. Regardless nothing could kill my Ladmo Bag buzz.
I display it proudly and have since had several kind and lenghty encounter's with both Wallace and Pat.
Thanks to Wallace Watchers. Keep up the good work.
I was on "It's Wallace", February 26, 1956 (the year that Mars was in Parahelian and Earth was in Apohelian). It was my birthday, and this was my gift.
I remember sitting on the set while Wallace (Bill) and Ladmo were getting ready for their first couple of sets. Funny, because your video of them playing the piano and drums to a 45 or 78 record was what they did that day.
Anyway, they finally came around to do the introductions and "bright-boy" spouted his knowledge about Mars being drawn to Earth because of our "Mutual gravities" (hey! I was just turning 8. I couldn't even spell pair a helium, and didn't know what an orbit was - especially elipsis...) Bill Thomson asked if I could read, and I told him what my mom had told me - that she said I had been the 2nd best reader in the first grade in Arizona, or America - didn't know then; don't know now.
It must have impressed him because he had me sit on his "Wallace Wagon" and read the teleprompter, and asked if I'd like to do it again when the cartoon was finished. I said, "Sure"; so I think (guess) I was the first kid announcer for Kellogg's on KPHO. I would have wanted to continue my "career", but my mom - who was in the front waiting room, watching on the monitor, was too embarrased to ever bring me back!
I went on to work at a few radio stations in Phoenix after college, played Dopey in Snow White & the 7 Dwarfs at Phoenix Little Theatre (Dec 1969). I'm still an amateur videographer - thanks to PC's and Pinnacle.
Just wish I could have continued with a great cast during the Camelot Era of TV. Yeah, I also loved Ernie Kovacs and Soupy Sales. I thought Uncle Miltie was boring, but loved Jonathan Winters. Sorry to see those days gone.