by Shellie Nelson, KSHB-TV, Kansas City
"Sunny days. Sweeping the clouds away."
Fans are celebrating the 40th anniversary of the longest-running children’s television program, Sesame Street. The first episode aired November 10, 1969.
The show has won 122 Emmy awards, the most of any show in television history, and is broadcast in more than 140 countries. Producers have made a point to change the show’s format over the years to keep up with current technology and cultural trends.
The new season of Sesame Street begins November 10th. Producers are promising a new look and format for the show.
Take our quiz to test your knowledge of some Sesame Street trivia!
1) Sesame Street has always featured celebrity guests on the show. Who was the first celebrity guest?
James Earl Jones was the first celebrity to appear on Sesame Street. He participated in making test films for the show while it was in development, and the segments including him were eventually aired as part of the series itself. However, Carol Burnett was the first celebrity whose appearance on Sesame Street was actually broadcast.
2) Who created the Muppets, and where was he born?
Jim Henson created the Muppets. He was born in Greenville, Mississippi.
3) Which of Henson’s characters has a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame?
Big Bird has a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.
4) What was the name of Big Bird’s teddy bear?
Radar was the name of Big Bird's teddy bear. Mr. Hooper, who owned Hooper's store, gave it to him.
Bonus: Mr. Hooper’s first name was Harold. Big Bird had trouble pronouncing Mr. Hooper's name, and often called him "Mr. Looper".
5) How many fingers do the Muppets characters have?
All of the Sesame Street Muppets have four fingers, except Cookie Monster, who has five.
6) What was Ernie trying to remember when he tied string on each of his fingers?
Ernie tied string on each of his fingers to help him remember to buy more string.
7) Frank Oz performed many of the muppet characters on Sesame Street. Which one did he not perform?
Frank Oz did not perform game show host Guy Smiley. Smiley was performed by Jim Henson, and mostly discontinued when Henson died in 1990.
8) How old is Big Bird?
Big Bird is a curious 6-year-old. Carroll Spinney, 75, has been Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch since 1969.
9) Does Oscar have a pet?
Yes! Oscar's pet elephant, who lives in his trash can, is named Fluffy. He also has a pet worm, named Slimey. Among Oscar's other treasures are a goat, a piano, a bowling alley and a flock of chickens.
10) Several other Muppets also have pets. What are the pets belonging to Elmo and to Zoe?
Elmo has a pet goldfish named Dorothy. Zoe has a pet rock named Rocko. Telly named his hamster Chucky when he thought Chucky was a boy. Later, Chucky had babies and Telly renamed her Chucky Sue.
11) When did Elmo first appear on Sesame Street?
Elmo began first appeared on Sesame Street as a nameless "Anything Muppet". Kevin Clash first played Elmo as the 3 1/2-year-old we know now in 1984. There are currently nine Elmo puppets, including a remote controlled version.
12) Two of the monster Muppets’ colors changed after the first season – can you name them, and their original colors?
In the first season, Grover was brown, not blue. In the first season, Oscar was orange, not green.
13) Who lives in Ernie's window box?
The Twiddlebug family lives in Ernie's flower box, and make all of their belongings out of tiny everyday objects that they find.
14) One of Sesame Street’s newest characters is Abby Cadabby. What animation designer created many of the characters in Abby’s Flying Fairy School?
Many of the characters in “Abby’s Flying Fairy School” were created by Peter de Séve, who also designed the characters in Ice Age.
15) What is the usual show sponsor?
Each episode of Sesame Street is brought you by various letters and numbers each day. Today's quiz was brought to you by the letter "X" and the number "11"!
How did you do? Share your thoughts and memories of Sesame Street with us, leave your comments below!
Copyright 2009 The E.W. Scripps Co. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.