{"title":"The Jerry Lewis Labor Day MDA Telethon","dateDebut":"1966","dateEnd":"2015","description":"An annual benefit concert held each Labor Day to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. The program was originally hosted by Jerry Lewis. From 1966 to 2010, the telethon aired up to 21\u00bd hours, starting on the Sunday evening preceding Labor Day and continuing until late Monday afternoon. MDA calls its network of participating stations the \"Love Network\". The show originated from Las Vegas for twenty-eight of the years it aired.\n\nThe first Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon was held the weekend of September 4\u20135, 1966; it was staged at New York's Americana Hotel and carried by WNEW-TV. Proving the doubters wrong, the event was so successful that Lewis had to paint a \"1\" on the 6-digit tote board when the final tote reached $1,002,114. The show repeated its success in 1967, raising $1,126,846.\n\nAfter word of the telethon spread in 1968, the whole show began its famous nationwide broadcast. By 1976 the \"Love Network\" had grown to 213 stations nationwide which made it a major network, even if it only broadcast 21\u00bd hours a year. The show was cut back to six hours in 2010 which was Jerry Lewis' last year of hosting. Starting in 2011 the show was referred to as \"The MDA Show of Strength\" and aired for two or three hours in prime time on the Sunday Night before Labor Day. The Muscular Dystrophy Association announced in 2015 that the show was ending its run for good. In its long run, the show and Jerry Lewis became a holiday TV staple for Labor Day. Mr.Lewis co-hosted the early MDA Telethons with Mr.Dean Martin in the early 1950's.","leadImageMedUrl":"https:\/\/distro-1.retrojunk.com\/secure\/ce1aecf8e50b3adfcf41391abafbb1e9b64d24feb14cf86749d1479e2b006ad990b223\/image\/3LxlmR2iME3ctJUD7Rmg6_md.jpg"}