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For more than 30 years, John Kiesewetter has been the source for information about all things in local media — comings and goings, local people appearing on the big or small screen, special programs, and much more. Contact John at

My Annual Holiday Program Guide Is Here

Courtesy CBS Television
The "I Love Lucy" Christmas episode from 1956 repeats Friday, Dec. 14, on CBS.

From Rudolph to Ralphie, John Legend to Johnny Cash, the Grinch to Amy Grant, Elf to Ed Sullivan, Lucy Van Pelt to Lucy Ricardo, they’re all here in my Holiday Program Guide.

It’s my biggest list ever, and it has something for everyone. Here’s the link to a downloadable PDF so you can print the list, circle your favorites and share with family and friends.

Credit Courtesy CBS Television
Schroeder plays "Jingle Bells" for Lucy in 'A Charlie Brown Christmas.'

You'll find A Charlie Brown Christmas, Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer, Shrek the Halls, How The Grinch Stole Christmas, Music of Hanukkah, Frosty The Snowman, Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas, Arthur’s Perfect Christmas, ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas, The Cat In the Hat and yes, even Nestor The Long-Eared Christmas Donkey.

Ten Hallmark movies premieres are listed – including Mingle All The Way with Mason native Brant Daugherty Dec. 1 – along with the holiday classics watched every year: White Christmas, Miracle on 34th Street, Eight Crazy Nights and It’s A Wonderful Life.

Credit Courtesy Hallmark Channel
Mason native Brant Daugherty and Jen Lilley star in "Mingle All The Way" on the Hallmark Channel Dec. 1.

It’s a wonderful time of the year, isn’t it?

Credit Courtesy TBS
Peter Billingsley stars as Ralphie on "A Christmas Story.'

Be careful you don’t shoot your eye out with the Red Ryder BB gun, or you’ll miss the annual A Christmas Story marathon. Or spending Christmas with the Kranks, The Santa Clause, Itzhak Perlman’s Hanukkah Radio Party, The Polar Express, Elf, Dreaming Of A Jewish Christmas, Jingle All The Way, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation or A Christmas Carol.

I've listed a half-dozen incarnations of Scrooge played by Patrick Stewart, Jim Carrey, Alastair Sim, Reginald Owen, Cicely Tyson and Jonathan Winters.

New this year are A Legendary Christmas with John Legend and wife Chrissy Tiegen; Amy Grant’s Tennessee Christmas; Garth Brooks Live at Notre Dame; The Big Tiny Desk Holiday Special; Christmas In New Orleans; Darci Lynne: My Hometown Christmas Special with America’s Got Talent winner Darci Lynne Farmer; and Cincinnati chef Caitlin Steininger’s Dec. 6 debut on Bravo’s Top Chef filmed in Louisville, Lexington and Nashville earlier this year.  

Or you can enjoy holidays past with a 1977 Johnny Cash Christmas Show with Roy Orbison and Jerry Lee Lewis; A Nashville Christmas with Emmylou Harris, Lorrie Morgan, Wynonna Judd and Pam Tillis; Holiday Greetings From The Ed Sullivan Show with Johnny Mathis, Bob Newhart, Kermit the Frog, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans; or a Jazz with OT Christmas.

Credit Courtesy NBCUniversal
John Legend and wife Chrissy Tiegen star in their first NBC special, 'A Legendary Christmas With John And Chrissy.'

I’ve dug deep to find some really old favorites: Richard Thomas’ Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus; John Denver’s The Christmas Gift; Sammy Davis Jr.’s The Kid Who Loved Christmas Too Much; Debbie Reynolds’ The Christmas Wish; Kris Kristofferson’s Miracle In The Wilderness and Patricia Heaton’s A Town Without Christmas.

I even found Ernest Saves Christmas. KnowwhatImean?

Christmas In Connecticut comes twice – Barbara Stanwyck’s 1945 original, and Dyan Canon's 1992 remake with Bob Braun as TV newsman Sam Simon (Dec. 2). And it wouldn’t be Christmas in Cincinnati without repeats of the Paul Dixon Show chicken wedding or some Ruth Lyons specials.

Again it will be A Very Brady Christmas for TV lovers. You can celebrate the holidays with your Friends, Andy Griffith, I Love Lucy, Everybody Loves Raymond, The Big Bang Theory, The Jeffersons, King of Queens, WKRP In Cincinnati, M*A*S*H, Matlock, Facts of Life, Bonanza, Bob’s Burgers, Married… With Children, The Love Boat and The Twilight Zone.

And Seinfeld, too, with a Festivus for the rest of us.

Happy holidays!

John Kiesewetter, who has covered television and media for more than 35 years, has been working for Cincinnati Public Radio and WVXU-FM since 2015.