With everything going on in America and around the world, it is not surprising that more than five million people a day still watch The Andy Griffith Show. According to MeTV, with countless television shows, the Andy Griffith Show was the 60th most watched TV show in 2016! How many times over the years have you pondered what it would have been like to live in Mayberry? Where problems would surface and be solved in a half hour. When things moved at a slower and kinder pace, America loves Mayberry. We love its innocence and its charm. We love the ‘50s-style storefronts, the drugstore soda fountain, and the everybody-knows-your-name atmosphere. America loves Mayberry!
With countless numbers of fans, there are some wonderful Mayberry collections around the country. The Remembering Mayberry collection is one of many and is still under construction. So far, there are over 1,400 original cast member autographs and almost 5,000 total Mayberry items. The MEGA Mayberry collection is in Andy Griffith’s hometown, Mt. Airy, NC. Andy Griffith’s childhood friend (Emmett Forrest) started the Andy Griffith Museum years ago, and it has since morphed into the world’s finest collection of Mayberry memorabilia. You can visit the museum year-round, but the best time to visit is during Mayberry Days which is always the last weekend of September. You owe it to yourself to take a long weekend and visit Andy’s hometown during Mayberry Days!
The resurge in the Andy Griffith Show’s popularity is primarily due to a group of dedicated Mayberry fans who worked to bring the show back into the spotlight. This all started with Jim Clark. Jim founded the first rerun watchers club, wrote books, and worked tirelessly on his Mayberry passion. Then there were show promoters (Greg Brown, David Brown, Gary Wedemeyer, Tim McAbee, Joel Laird, and others) took on the financial responsibility to create shows with the original cast members. Without these events, most fans would have never had the opportunity to meet their Mayberry heroes in person. It allowed fans to find out how exceptional the cast members were and maybe get an autograph and a picture.
The next phase in the Mayberry story would then be the impersonators who love the show to the extent that they become one of the cast members every chance they get. These talented individuals will continue to improve their talents and will be transformed into the character they play at every opportunity. There are too many people to name them all, but it starts with David Browning, who plays the Mayberry Deputy. Then Allan Newsome who plays Floyd (www.MayberryBarber.com), Kenneth Junkin who plays Otis, Phil Fox who plays Earnest T Bass, Jeff Branch as Howard Sprague, Christie McLendon who plays Andylina (http://www.metteradvertiser.com/image_dd2a1d90-a944-11e7-8f7e-13f83ab67512.html), and once again, too many to name…but all are tremendously talented and much appreciated!
If the number one Mayberry fan of all time could be determined, Nancy Thornton would be at the top of the list. This wonderful lady travels to every event, big or small, to be in and around the Mayberry experience. She is truly a very special lady who loves The Andy Griffith Show!
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Many thanks for visiting the Remembering Mayberry website. There are still many items to be added, and it will be a work in progress for a while. Mayberry…my hometown!