Favorite Holiday OTR Shows


During various holiday seasons, many old-time radio shows made a special effort to produce programs somehow related to the holiday. Some of these programs were quite good; they represent "good radio" and invoke memories of a previous time.

Thanks to Bob Marquette, Jack French and John M. Eccles, Jr. for the initial suggestions!

Check the Sponsors List for places where these, and other holiday shows, might be available.

Favorite OTR Holiday Programs

HolidaySeries & Episode
Pumpkin

Halloween

  • CBS Radio Mysteries - "Dracula"
  • Escape - "Casting the Runes" 11/19/47
  • Escape - "The Fall of the House of Usher" 10/22/47
  • Great Gildersleeve - "Halloween Party" 10/31/43
  • Hall of Fantasy - "The Hangman's Ropes" from 1953
  • Hermit's Cave - "Hanson's Ghost" 10/03/47
  • Inner Sanctum - "A Corpse For Halloween" 10/31/49
  • Jack Benny - "Jack Goes Trick Or Treating" 10/31/48
  • Jack Benny Program - Halloween with Basil Rathbone 11/2/41
  • Lights Out - "Poltergeist" 10/20/42
  • Lights Out - "The Dark"
  • My Favorite Husband - "Halloween Surprise Party"
  • Our Miss Brooks - "Halloween Party" 10/30/49
  • Ozzie and Harriet - "The Haunted House" - 10/31/48
  • Quiet Please - "Calling All Souls" 10/31/48
  • Sam Spade - "The Fairley-Bright Caper" 10/31/48
  • Screen Director's Playhouse - "The Ghost Breakers" (Bob Hope)
  • Screen Director's Playhouse - "The Uninvited"
  • Suspense - "Dunwich Horror" from 11/1/45
  • Suspense - "Sorry, Wrong Number", 10/20/57
  • Suspense - "Three Skeleton Key" from 11/11/56
  • The Life of Riley - "Halloween Haunted House" 10/29/44
  • The Shadow - "The Three Ghosts" - Orson Welles, 10/31/37
  • War of the Worlds (Orson Welles broadcast of H.G. Wells story) Oct '38
Turkey

Thanksgiving

  • Great Gildersleeve - Thanksgiving 11/16/41
  • Hallmark Hall of Fame - "The Courtship of Miles Standish" (David Niven)
  • Jack Benny Program - "Jack's Turkey Dream" 11/25/43
  • Life of Riley - "Shooting a Turkey for Thanksgiving" 11/19/44
  • Mark Trail - "Poisoned Turkey" (Matt Crowley, Ben Cooper) 11/20/50
  • Melody Ranch - "The Kidnapping" (Gene Autry)
  • Sam Spade - "The Terrified Turkey Caper" 11/24/50
  • Reader's Digest Radio Edition- "Why Keep your Heart in Cold Storage?" (Van Heflin) 11/17/47
  • Soldiers in Grease Paint, all-star (Jack Benny, Bob Hope) 11/25/43
  • Suspense - "The Screaming Woman" (Margaret O'Brien) 11/25/48
  • The Aldrich Family - "A Thanksgiving Turkey" 11/25/48
Santa

Christmas

  • "A Christmas Stocking" (Ginger Rogers, Helen Trauble) 12/25/44
  • Abbott & Costello Christmas Show,12/20/45
  • Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet - "No Snow for Christmas", 12/26/48
  • Amos and Andy's "Christmas Show", 12/22/42
  • Archie Andrews - "Christmas Shopping" 12/13/47
  • Author's Playhouse - "Christmas by Injunction" by O'Henry 12/21/41
  • Avalon Time (Red Skelton) 12/6/39
  • Bigtown - "Prelude to Christmas" December 21, 1948
  • Bing Crosby Kraft Music Christmas Show (1935 - 1946)
  • Bing Crosby's Philco Radio Time 12/47 doing his version of- "The Small One".
  • Bud Abbott & Lou Costello Christmas Show.. December 20, 1945
  • Campbell Playhouse- "A Christmas Carol" 12/24/39 with Lionel Barrymore, Orson Welles and the Mercury Theatre.
  • Casey, Crime Photographer- "The Santa Claus of Bum's Boulevard" 12/15/47
  • Cavalcade of America - "Names on the Land" starring Frank Morgan in a joyous celebration of America's first postwar Christmas. Absolutely marvelous. 12/24/45
  • Charlie McCarthy Show of 12/24/44 where Charlie attempts to recite- "T'was The Night Before Christmas"
  • Cinnamon Bear, The
  • Damon Runyan Theater - "Dan's Christmas", 11/28/50
  • Dennis Day Show - "Boy Who Sang For A King" 12/25/46
  • Dickens' Christmas Carol - several versions that Lionel Barrymore did over the years
  • Dragnet - "22 cal. Rifle for Christmas"
  • Dragnet - "Big Little Jesus"
  • Duffy's Tavern.- "The Stranger" 12/23/48. Guest star was Jeff Chandler
  • Family Theater - "Blessed Are They" 12/22/48
  • Family Theater - "Lullaby of Christmas" 12/13/50
  • Family Theater - "The Littlest Angel" 12/21/49
  • Family Theater- "The Other Wise Man (Jeff Chandler) 12/14/49
  • Fatman - "Murder Sends a Christmas Card" from 1950
  • Fibber McGee and Molly - "Best Decorated House" 12/19/49
  • Fibber McGee and Molly - "Christmas Fund" 11/20/1953
  • Fibber McGee and Molly - "Christmas Shopping For McGee's Nephew" 12/20/38
  • Fibber McGee and Molly - "Fixing Toys for Kids", 12/24/46
  • Fibber McGee and Molly - "The Lost Key Ring", 12/23/47
  • Fibber McGee and Molly - "Wistful Vista Department Store" 12/9/35
  • Fred Allen's Town Hall Tonight - "Santa's Sit-Down, 12/22/37
  • Gene Autry's Melody Ranch - "The Christmas Story", 1952
  • Grand Central Station- "Miracle for Christmas" 12/19/52
  • Great Gildersleeve - "Christmas for the Family", 12/22/48
  • Great Gildersleeve - "The Miracle of the Bells"
  • Gunsmoke - "The Christmas Story" 12/20/1952
  • Hallmark Playhouse: The Story of Silent Night, 12/23/48
  • Honest Hal (Harold Peary show) - "Playing Santa Claus", 12/20/51
  • Jack Benny - "Last Minute Christmas Shopping", 12/21/47
  • Jack Benny Program from 12/23/45 with the Colmans
  • Life of Riley - "Christmas Present", 12/17/44
  • Life of Riley - "Roswee, A Guest for Christmas", 12/24/44
  • Lights Out - "Christmas Story", 12/22/37 Written by Willis Cooper
  • Lone Ranger - "Christmas Comes To Sandy", 12/24/48
  • Lum & Abner - Christmas Episode, 1938
  • Lux Radio Theatre - "I'll Be Seeing You" with Dorothy McGuire and Joseph Cotton
  • Lux Radio Theatre - "It's a Wonderful Life" with James Stewart, Donna Reed and Victor Moore (This version is much better than the Screen Director's Playhouse version)
  • Lux Radio Theatre - "Miracle on 34th Street" with Edmund Gwenn
  • Lux Radio Theatre - "The Bishop's Wife" with Cary Grant and Phyllis Thaxter.
  • Milton Berle Radio Show (Christmas show) December 23, 1947
  • Mysterious Traveler - "Christmas Story" 12/25/51
  • Our Miss Brooks - "The Magic Christmas Tree," 12/25/49
  • Pat Novak For Hire - "The Christmas Story"
  • Phil Harris-Alice Faye Show - "No Community Christmas Tree" 12/18/49
  • Phil Harris-Alice Faye Show where Phil hired Jack Benny to play Santa for his kids. 12/25/49
  • Radio Reader's Digest - "Room for a Stranger" 12/19/46 Frank Sinatra
  • Richard Diamond, Private Detective- "A Christmas Carol" 12/24/49
  • Roy Rogers Show- "Night Before the Night Before Christmas"
  • Screen Director's Playhouse - "It's a Wonderful Life" with Jimmy Stewart, 5/8/49
  • Sherlock Holmes - "The Night Before Christmas," 12/24/45
  • Six-Shooter - "Puckett's Christmas Carol," 12/24/49
  • Suspense - "A Christmas for Carol", w/ Dennis Day, December 21, 1950
  • Suspense - "Holiday Story" 12/23/48 with Herbert Marshall"
  • Suspense - "Out For Christmas" 12/58 with Raymond Burr.
  • Suspense - "The Night Before Christmas" 12/24/51
  • Tales of the Texas Rangers "Christmas Payoff" 12/23/51
  • Tales of the Texas Rangers "Christmas Present" 12/24/50
  • The Life Of Riley - "First Christmas in Store Window", 12/20/47
  • The Man Called X - "Thurston's Christmas Story", 12/23/50
  • The Mysterious Traveller - "Christmas Story", 12/25/51
  • The Shadow - "A Gift Of Murder" - Bret Morrison - 12/21/47
  • The Shadow - "Joey's Christmas Story", 12/22/40
  • The Shadow - "The Stockings Were Hung" - Bill Johnstone - 12/24/39
  • The Whistler - "Delayed Christmas Present", 12/26/48
  • The Whistler - "Three Wise Guys" (by Damon Runyon)
  • Vic & Sade - "Suggestions For Boss' Christmas Gift", 10/27/42
New Year

New Year

(How can New Years arrive without Guy Lombardo and his Royal Canadians welcoming them?)
  • Fibber McGee & Molly - "New Year's Celebration" 12/30/35
  • Gunsmoke - "Pucket's New Year", 01/01/1956
  • Jack Benny - "Goodbye 1938, Hello 1939", 01/01/39
  • Life of Riley - "Jr. Has Two Dates for New Years Eve", 01/03/48
  • New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - "The Iron Box", 12/31/45
  • Our Miss Brooks - "Babysitting on New Year's Eve", 01/01/50
  • The Shadow - "The Man who Murdered Time" -Bill Johnstone - 01/01/39
Valentines Day
Valentine's Day
(St. Valentine's Day, 1929 had a special meaning for Chicagoland residents near 2122 N. Clark St. The memories evoked by the following OTR shows should be much better!)
  • Duffy's Tavern "Unsigned Valentine" w/guest: Shelly Winters, 02/16/51

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