Public broadcasting celebrates Lawrence Welk’s 100th birthday

Public broadcasting celebrates Lawrence Welk's 100th birthday March 11 marks the 100th birthday of one of America's legends, whose early career is forever linked to South Dakota: Lawrence Welk. To celebrate the centennial, SDPB Television, which currently airs The Lawrence Welk Show, will broadcast an all-new special, Lawrence Welk: God Bless America, on Tuesday, March 11, at 7 p.m.

Lawrence Welk: God Bless America pays a musical tribute to America's freedoms, its leaders and its veterans, and to the patriotism Lawrence Welk held dear as part of the classic American success story of his life.

Lawrence Welk: God Bless America features 18 stars from the Welk Musical Family, including Anacani, Elaine Balden, Bobby Burgess, Jo Ann Castle, Henry Cuesta, Dick Dale, Ralna English, Joe Feeney, Myron Floren, Guy Hovis, Jack Imel, The Lennon Sisters, Mary Lou Metzger, Tom Netherton, Bob Ralston and Norma Zimmer.

The special is co-hosted by Mary Lou Metzger and Tom Netherton and also features The Welk Champagne Music Makers under the direction of conductor John Bahler.

Lawrence Welk: God Bless America features songs from different eras, including highlights from 1900-1935, the Big Band Era, World War II, the Fabulous '50s, the Vietnam War years and Lawrence Welk's retirement in 1982.

Then, the program takes the audience into the present time of a national resurgence of patriotism.

For information about Lawrence Welk: God Bless America, call 1-800-456-0766 or visit the Web at

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