KENNETH JOHANNESSEN
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HERE I AM WITH . . .

. . . THE "MILLION-DOLLAR RADIO TEAM" - and the best people I've ever worked with.

This was the nucleus of the KPQ crew from 2001 to 2007. Top row: Traffic Director Janette Morris, Sales Manager Greg McEwen, and me. Middle row: Morning Host/Sports Director Eric Granstrom, The Quake 102.1's "Twisted Sister" Kristie Taylor, Operations Director Debi "Java Mama" Campestrini, and Account Executive Amy Gustin. On the bottom (but only in this picture): Account Executive Diana Marlin. This was taken the night of Debi's departure. We had a party, and we all drank as much as we should have. But the smiles were real.
We all really loved each other.

Not pictured: News Director Steve Hair, Account Executive and "Voice of the Panthers" Mike Dempsey (R.I.P.), Afternoon Host Ray McNeal, Bookkeeper Shannon Fadden (who also left KPQ that day), and news host/sports guy/meteorologist Grant Olsen.

Most of them moved on, out of disdain for the new owners more than anything else. We'd all love to work together again, so if there's any station out there that needs a kick-ass bunch of people, we're available . . .

. . . Mark McEwen, formerly of CBS' "Early Show" and A&E's"Live By Request." We met after I interviewed him for my "Two o'Clock Show" plugging a benefit he was doing for the Wenatchee Valley Symphony - his sister Leslie lives in Wenatchee and was on the symphony's board.

. . . everyone's favorite "Dolly," Carol Channing, who came to Wenatchee to perform her one-woman show in May 2006.
She was my guest for a full hour, reminiscing and taking phone calls from listeners.

. . . KING-TV's Meeghan Black in the Northwest Wine and Ale Room during the 2007 KPQ Home and Garden Show (the best . . . EVER!!). This shot was taken after a ten or fifteen minute chat over a glass of wine. She's a neat lady.

. . . author/writer/cartoonist Stuart Hample, who compiled a book of scripts, letters and notes by the late comedian Fred Allen. He was a guest on my show, and at his urging, I went to New York in November 2001 to attend a discussion of Allen and the book at the Museum of Television and Radio. You can read about the trip here. This picture was taken at the reception afterward.

. . . sportscaster Brian Davis. Now he does the TV play-by-play for the Oklahoma City Thunder, but in 2002 he was the voice of the Seattle Seahawks (and a real nice guy, then and now!), visiting us at the 2002 KPQ Home and Garden Show (the best . . . EVER!!).

. . . Penticton, BC Mayor David Perry, on the road with "The Two o'Clock Show" at the Penticton Lakeside Resort and Casino's
Barking Parrot Lounge. It was prior to the city's annual "Fest of Ale" in April 2003.

. . . a chocolate sundae, celebrating the third anniversary of "The Two o'Clock Show" at my favorite Wenatchee hangout, the Owl Soda Fountain (. . . and I wasn't sure the show would last a month!!).

. . . talk show legend Joe Franklin in his memento-filled New York office, October 2005.

. . . two of "Kenny J's" angels: The Quake 102.1's "Java Mama" (a.k.a. Debi Campestrini), traffic director Janette Morris
and I ham it up at the 2005 KPQ Christmas Party!

. . . Sam Adkins, former Seattle Seahawk and current Seahawks broadcaster, when he made a surprise visit to KPQ in December 2005.

. . . "Afternoon Update" host Ray McNeal (l) and "Morning Update" news anchor Grant Olsen (r) at the 2007 KPQ Home and Garden Show.
Don't mess with us - we're good.


HERE I AM AT THE 2007 GAME SHOW CONGRESS (GSC6) WITH . . .

BUT FIRST A NOTE ABOUT GSC: The Game Show Congress is a not-for-profit cooperative association for the promotion of the game show and quiz event industry. Its signature event each year brings us fans the opportunity to salute and mingle with those in the industry. I went to the 2007 GSC in Hollywood - and these are a few of the people I had the good fortune of meeting:

WINK MARTINDALE: Wink was the recipient of the Ralph Edwards Community Service Award. And the best looking man in the room!
(That's it - next time, I'm wearing a suit!)

DON PARDO: I don't need to tell you who Don Pardo is, but I will say he is a really nice man. And if you were fortunate enough to be in the lobby of the Beverly Garland Holiday Inn the night he held court answering questions and telling stories for three hours, I'll only say: you can thank me. It all started when he came in and asked me which way to the elevator! (Someday I'll post the whole story.)

JUNE LOCKHART: Not only was she busy with Lassie, Lost in Space and Petticoat Junction, Miss Lockhart also did her share of game shows back in the day. The one I really remember her from was an obscure 1980 number from San Francisco called Take My Word for It.

GEOFF EDWARDS: He looks a little different from the days when he presided over Jackpot! and The New Treasure Hunt in a perm, but he is every bit as gracious and funny.

BETSY PALMER: Here was a real treat - some new-found friends and I were leaving the Garland for dinner and a performance of "What's My Line? on Stage," when I saw someone very familiar (and the one person I wanted to meet that I hadn't yet) standing by the curb. "Betsy!," I shouted. She looked, gave a big smile and said, "How did you recognize me?" All I could say was, "Betsy . . .?" - I mean, she doesn't look that much different from the days of I've Got a Secret, does she?

But as great as these people are - and they are all wonderful, two of the biggest thrills I had I don't have pictures for, to my regret. I met Betty White, who signed my diary next to where her beloved husband, the late Allen Ludden, had signed some 35 years prior (I had met him in 1972 when he made an appearance at a White Front store in North Seattle) - she kissed his signature! And I also met Ann Cullen, who is special to me, since Bill was my hero ever since I was a kid. I should have had a picture taken, since she is still a stunner, but I felt lucky just to meet her and ask her to sign my program. Which she graciously did.


FROM THE FAMILY ALBUMS . . .

Here are my mom and dad. This would probably have been taken in the early 80s at a Sons of Norway Syttende Mai dinner (it means 17th of May - it's Norway's Constitution Day).

Striking a pose with a friend I met while working at the Puyallup Fair in 1982.

Meeting with the tribe near Vancouver, BC in 1980.

At least one of the natives there was somewhat friendly!

<<< WHO IS THAT?????

This was taken when I was confirmed, about 35 years and 40 pounds ago (more or less).
Oh, if only I were that thin today!!


Text and pictures copyright © 2010 by Kenneth I. Johannessen.

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This webpage was created and produced in the United States of America.

06/22/10