James D. Fisk died on Saturday, January 8 at Ellis Hospital in Schenectady. He was 91 years old.
Fisk was born in Glens Falls, and for a generation of Nippertown baby boomers, he will always be remembered as Uncle Jim Fisk, the host of the local children’s television show, “Freihofer Breadtime Stories” (also known as “The Freddie Freihofer Show”), on WRGB-TV. It was the first live local television show to be broadcast in color.
Fisk worked at WRGB as a scene designer and artist beginning in 1945. On July 23, 1956, he began his decade-long stint as the host of “BreadTime Stories.” Every day was a birthday party on the show, although the birthday cake, celebration and Fisk’s trademark “Squiggles” weren’t always enough to assure that every youngster on the show was having a good time. Sometimes the pressure of live TV was just too much:
After leaving WRGB in 1966, Fisk started the local map-making company, Jimapco. The company has grown steadily over the years, and with its slogan, “Maps to swear by…not at!,” is still in operation today.
A memorial service for Fisk will be held at the Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church in Ballston Lake at 11am on Saturday.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be directed to the Make a Wish Foundation, the Adirondack Lyme Disease Foundation, your local animal shelter or the charity of one’s choice.
Jim Fisk’s obituary with related video links at CBS6 (WRGB-TV)
Eric Anderson’s story in The Times Union
Chuck Miller’s blog entry
Jim Fisk’s obituary in The Daily Gazette
Jim Fisk’s obituary in The Saratogian