Captain 11: Once Upon A Time, There Was A Man Original

A Original Digital Documentary

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — 65 years ago on Saturday, one man of the century put on a suit embroidered with the number 11 and was promoted to the role of captain.

Captain 11 premiered on KELOLAND Television on March 7, 1955. When the popular children’s television show signed off in 1996, it would be marked as the world’s longest-running children’s TV show.

A coin toss, a man named Dave Dedrick, a fresh uniform and some pinball machine parts would be the start of a show that would impact generations across KELOLAND.

Our studios in downtown Sioux Falls would become the gathering place for children from South Dakota, northwest Iowa and southwest Minnesota. All the while, the Captain would head across the viewing area to make appearances at fairs, festivals and parades.

He was kind. He was fair. He was brave. He fulfilled those requirements; and the Outer Galaxies designated him the wisdom of Solomon and strength of Atlas.

In a Original Digital Documentary, we look at the man who was Captain 11, how the show came about and the lasting effect of the most recognizable character in KELOLAND.

When Dedrick signed off he said, “If I were to leave a legacy, it would be that on some future day, each of you might sit down with a child and say, ‘Once upon a time, there was a man.'”

Watch Captain 11 | Once Upon A Time There Was A Man in the player above.

Throughout Friday and this weekend, we will be sharing memories from crew members, visiting his old set and sharing some newly restored full episodes. KELOLAND’s Kelli Volk spoke with longtime co-worker Doug Lund about Captain 11. Watch that story Friday on Eye on KELOLAND at 10 p.m.

🚀Want to explore more Captain 11?

Latest Articles

  • by Michael Geheren
    SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — It was 65 years ago this Saturday Captain 11 was introduced to KELOLAND.
  • by
    Our team has also been digging into our archives to bring you some additional Captain 11 memories. reporter, Michael Geheren, has put together a digital documentary on Dave Dedrick's […]
  • by Michael Geheren
    For generations, Captain 11 entered the homes, marched in parades and brought joy to thousands of children across KELOLAND.
  • by Kelli Volk
    SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — This weekend marks a big anniversary for KELOLAND and we're celebrating with Friday's Eye On KELOLAND at 10.
  • by Michael Geheren
    SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — 65 years ago on Saturday, one man of the century put on a suit embroidered with the number 11 and was promoted to the role of […]

State Historical Society

His suit and other memorabilia are on display in at the State Historical Museum in Pierre. (NOTE: the set is not on public display).

Monday through Saturday
9:00 AM to 4:30 PM

Sundays & Holidays
1:00 PM to 4:30 PM  

Museum Gallery Admission
Child (17 and under)- Free
Adults- $4.00
Seniors (60 and over)- $3.00
Historical Society Members- Free
Special discounts for AAA members 
Free admission to galleries for all visitors the first Sunday of the month

South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center
900 Governors Drive
Pierre, SD 57501

SculptureWalk Sioux Falls

Visit Captain 11 on the SculptureWalk in Downtown Sioux Falls. He is located outside of KELOLAND Media Group studios.

KELOLAND Media Group
501 S. Phillips Ave.
Sioux Falls, SD 57104

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Click here to add a crew member frame to your Facebook profile picture.

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