Q: Can you solve the mystery of this club card and pin for me? It appeared to have that 1950s appeal to me and that was probably why I had purchased it for just a dollar. I picked this up at a show about 10 years ago. I haven’t come across much information about it since and have never seen another like it.

A: One highlight of a child’s life during the 1940s-1960s was the discovery of premiums. Many were found within cereal boxes and the like, but the most coveted premiums were membership premiums such as yours from Al’s Kiddie Club. Membership premiums appealed to children in that they had to send away for them, and then had the anticipation of waiting for them to arrive. The concept alone was appealing, to be accepted by a group where otherwise one was not accepted, and boosted one’s self-esteem greatly. A kid could be a kid with his dreams of what membership entailed.

Membership clubs, ephemera and premiums were an enduring staple of the Golden Age of radio history. Most kids were hard pressed at that time to recall a friend who was not a member of one radio or television club or another. Some clubs were interwoven in multiple ways, combining radio, comics, magazines, TV and even movies. Marketing angles were brilliant, and the sense of bonding, or kinship with one’s particular club or fan group, was even more heightened when it was a secret society of one kind or another.

Kiddie clubs were held across the U.S. in theaters on Saturdays during the ’50s and ’60s. As your membership card and pin indicate, Al’s Kiddie Club was held Saturdays at 2 p.m. at the Warner Theatre of Washington, D.C. We did read about the Kiddie Club of Huntsville, Ala., held at the Lyric theater. Anyone who was a preteen and attended the junior high went to the Lyric on Saturday mornings. The Kiddie Club was a way of life for most. While there, most kids would sing or perform an act. The best act would win a prize. After the club, a movie was played. High school brought an end to one’s part in the Kiddie Club. Your membership card and badge in mint condition would bring at least between $10-$20 each, and more if the right demand is present in the marketplace at the time of sale.


AL's Kiddie Club 65

Al's Kiddie Pin and Card


One response to “Al’s Kiddie Club and the Value of Belonging”

  1. Hookman says:

    Brings back memories.

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