'Mister Rogers: It's You I Like' Marks the 50th Anniversary of the Children's Series

Posted by Lucie Raposo on

MISTER ROGERS: IT'S YOU I LIKE is a celebrity-filled, hour-long special that celebrates Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, the pioneering PBS series that premiered nationally 50 years ago and became an iconic and enduring landmark in the world of children's television and beyond. Rhode Island PBS airs this special on Saturday, March 3 at 6:30 p.m., adn Sunday March 4 at 2 p.m.

Cast members from the groundbreaking series share their personal perspectives and insights in this new production, which pays tribute to television's longest-running children's series, still broadcast on many PBS stations today. The program also features interviews with numerous celebrities who have been influenced and inspired by Fred Rogers, a modest man who always said, "I am not a teacher, I simply help children learn."

Caroll Spinney, puppeteer who played Sesame Street's Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch

Michael Keaton, who worked as a stagehand and made appearances on the series in the 1970s, hosts the special. Judd Apatow, Joyce DiDonato, Chris Kratt, John Lithgow, Yo-Yo Ma and son Nicholas Ma, Itzhak Perlman, Sarah Silverman, Esperanza Spalding, and Caroll Spinney reveal their favorite memories from Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, while Joe Negri ("Handyman Negri"), David Newell ("Mr. McFeely") and Joanne Rogers, Fred's widow, share their personal stories. Also featured are performances from the archives by Tony Bennett, The EMPIRE Brass Quintet, Hillary Hahn, Margaret Hamilton, Yo-Yo Ma and Nicholas, Wynton Marsalis, and Perlman.

Joe "Handyman" Negri

The nearly 900 episodes created by Fred Rogers encompass topics that resonate to this day with adults and children alike. Favorite segments, such as a visit with Koko the Gorilla, Big Bird's appearance in the Neighborhood of Make-Believe as well as trips to the Crayola Factory and the Radio Flyer Wagon Company, are highlighted.

Be sure to tune in for a memorable blend of nostalgia and contemporary perspective!