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Mr. Peppermint Reflects On 30-Year Career

LONGVIEW (CBSDFW.COM) – Jerry Haynes believes clothes make the man, and the idea for his long running show “Peppermint Place” came from a costume he saw in The Music Man.

“Robert Preston had all those bright coats and hats, and it just came to me while driving down to work a couple of weeks before it was to begin. Why not call yourself Mr. Peppermint and have a red and white coat?” Haynes said during a recent interview from his Longview home.

At age 84, Haynes moves slowly, but his sense of humor is still just as quick as it was when he regularly graced television screens.

“I got a lot of feedback from kids. A little girl once said, ‘I watch you every morning Mr. Peppermint, but my mother is sick of you,’” he said with a laugh.

The show started in 1961 and was on the air for a total of 30 years, making it the longest running children’s program in local television.

However, he also made television history for another reason. Haynes went to watch President Kennedy’s motorcade pass through Dallas, and wound up becoming one of the first broadcasters to give an eyewitness account.

“We walked over and saw them and were leaving then and heard the shots,” Haynes said. “So I ran back to the station as quick as I could and I heard a lady say, ‘My God, my Lord they’ve killed him, My Lord, they’ve killed him.’”

“I’ll never forget that,” Haynes said.

Haynes didn’t retire when “Peppermint Place” ended in 1996. Instead he and his wife, Doris, moved to California.

He was cast in several roles, appearing on “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman” and in several commercials. He also landed parts in movies including, Places in the Heart with Sally Field and a Patsy Cline biopic called Sweet Dreams.

He played a judge his last movie, Boys Don’t Cry, a small independent film that launched the career of a big star.

“There was this was this kid who was acting up, a smart-aleck, I thought. Who the heck is that? I asked the guys who were doing the make-up, ‘Who was that?’ They said, ‘That was Hilary Swank.’”

This month, Jerry and Doris Haynes will celebrate their 56th wedding anniversary.

They have three children and four grandchildren. Their son Gibby Haynes is an alternative rock icon as the front man for the band Butthole Surfers, a group that influenced Nirvana, among others.

Jerry and Doris Haynes moved to Longview to be closer to their daughter and watch their grandson compete in high school track meets.

He still runs into plenty of people who want to talk with him about “Peppermint Place,” and he’s happy to oblige.

“I’m glad they watched,” he said summing up a 30-year career. “It was fun, and still is.”

  • Becky Brooks

    And who knew Mr. Wiggly Worm would make it to the Royal Wedding?

  • http://fortworthinsight.com/news/mr-peppermint-reflects-on-30-year-career/ Mr. Peppermint Reflects On 30-Year Career « Fort Worth News Feeds

    […] Mr. Peppermint Reflects On 30-Year Career Jerry Haynes believes clothes make the man, and the idea for his long running show “Peppermint Place” came from a costume he saw in The Music Man. Go to News Source […]

  • Erin

    I see you changed smartA$$ to smart-aleck from the video to the website. I stopped watching your broadcast some years ago and switched to ch. 4, thank you for reminding me why. I should not have to explain why a word my children are not allowed to say is on the local news. Come on guys, rise above cheap language.

  • Heinomusik


  • ilene

    I grew up with Mr Peppermint and have all fond memories of the show and Mr.Haynes. I remember that I had even made my own box and wiggly worm to play with while I watched the show. A simple show that was simply entertaining for young children.
    Thanks for the update on Mr. Haynes and I wish him all the best.

    • les

      i also grew up with mr. peppermint . this was the show to watch in the morning . do you rember slam bang theater and ickky twerp ???

  • Jack

    I sure wish you would post the video for all of us outside your viewing area.

  • Survon1

    Thank you Mr Peppermint (Hayes). I remember you from my many trips with my mother to the Women’s Building at the State Fair of Texas when you brought your talents there and many other places around the DFW area.

  • Steven

    This brings back so many magical memories of my childhood. Good to remember it wasn’t all bad.

  • darrell

    Mr. Peppermint was a staple in my childhood, as with all the kids i knew growing up. Although at the time i was to young to see the influences it would have on children i know them now. Comparing the content of that show to what kids watch today, its no wonder our children have so many issues in their lives.

    Thanks for the memories and for the lessons learned Mr. Haynes.

  • cathy

    i still remember watching him when i was little… loved that show. i still have a post card he signed when i saw him in person-one time. i think it was at the old north town mall.

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