SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — KELOLAND TV is celebrating its 70th anniversary this year.
KELO signed on as South Dakota’s very first TV station on May 19th, 1953.
We sat down with the man whose father started it all; the place we call KELOLAND.
“It was interesting, I just came down out of high school,” former director of KELO operations Joe H. Floyd said.
Joe H. Floyd, who is now 86 years old, recalls the early days of KELOLAND TV when he went to work for his dad.
He remembers the very first night KELO signed on the air.
“We had been rehearsing how to handle the film that was shot during the news broadcast, I walked in and saw Evans Nord and my dad and said I think we are going on the air tonight,” Floyd said.
Floyd says his dad built a TV station in the Upper Midwest, where most people didn’t even own a television yet.
Captain 11 became an iconic figure in family living rooms, but a lot of people might not know this about KELO.
“We didn’t have a Captain 11 until we had been live for at least a year and we copied it from WTCN in Minneapolis,” Floyd said.
Dave Dedrick became Captain 11 and became the longest running children’s show in America.
Floyd says he and another employee had a hand in the original Captain 11 set.
“We built the time machine we took an old pinball machine tore it apart and that became the time machine,” Floyd laughs.
Now as time travels, 70 years later, Floyd looks back and marvels at what’s become affectionately known as KELOLAND.
“We can all stand back be proud of how KELO has maintained its reputation and grown with the industry you can look back and say we did a pretty good job,” Floyd said.