|This Popular NYC based comedy/ variety kids tv show made it's debut on WABD TV Ch.5 in NYC. Originally seen as a Sunday Afternoon program, Wonderama would engage it's viewers in a unique series of segments that ranged from fashion shows for kids to comedy skits, contests, magic tricks, drawing and cooking lessons and reruns of old movie cartoons, comedies and serials.
Sandy Becker was the program's first host. He would mc the show from Sunday September 25, 1955 to August,1956. Herb Sheldon would host the show from Sunday September 16, 1956 to August, 1958. (Sheldon's version of Wonderama would be the first incarnation of the program to be seen on Sunday mornings). Bill Britten would host the show from August 10, 1958 to December 28, 1958. (Britten's version of the series would be the first version to be taped before a live studio audience on Sunday mornings). Sonny Fox would become the show's fourth and most memorable mc beginning in the winter of 1959. He would pre-tape his hosting segments on Thursday afternoons for Sunday Morning broadcasts.
Sonny would host the show from Sunday January 4,1959 to August,1967. Bob McAllister would become Wonderama's fifth and last host/performer in August, 1967. He would mc the show Sunday Mornings and for a time weekday afternoons and mornings during his ten years with the series. In October of 1980, Wonderama began it's last incarnation as a kids newsmagazine and travelogue.
Hosted by a group of teen the show's format focused on taking the viewers to places and events of interests to children. The series continued until it was moved to Saturday morning reruns in September of 1983. Wonderama comtinued it's run until the show was finally cancelled in the fall of 1987.