Sesame Street Facts and Statistics (2021)

sesame street facts

Believe it or not, Sesame Street first aired on November 10, 1969. The show played such a large role in so many of our early years, but how much do you really know (or remember) about it? I recently decided to sit down and dig up a few Sesame Street facts and statistics you may not have known. I hope you enjoy!

Sesame Street Facts and Statistics

  • Production Company: Sesame Workshop (Formerly Children’s Television Workshop)
  • Networks: PBS, HBO
  • Creators: Joan Ganz Cooney and Lloyd Morrisett
  • PBS Debut: November 10, 1969
  • HBO Debut: January 16, 2016
  • Theme Music: Joe Raposo, Jon Stone and Bruce Hart

Additional Fun Facts:

  1. Oscar the Grouch was originally orange.

  2. Cookie Monster wasn’t created for Sesame Street. He first appeared a few years earlier in a cracker commercial.
  3. Guy Smiley’s real name is Bernie Liederkrantz.
  4. The first guest on Sesame Street was James Earl Jones.
  5. Elmo once testified before Congress.
  6. “Rubber Duckie” as performed by Ernie, climbed to #16 on the Billboard singles chart in 1970.
  7. The name of the Sesame Street theme song is “Can You Tell Me how to Get to Sesame Street and was written by Joe Raposo in 1969.
  8. Big Bird is really 8’2″ tall!
  9. Mr. Hooper’s first name was Harold. He (actor Will Lee) died in 1982.
  10. Grover was originally greenish-brown and went by the name “Gleep.”
  11. Superman and Batman actually appeared in Season 1 of Sesame Street.
  12. Sesame Street’s operating costs are more than $100 million per year.
  13. Sesame Workshop employs around 400 people.
  14. The following is a breakdown of how Sesame Street pays for production (as of 2/6/19):
    • 39% Distribution Fees and Royalties
    • 31% Philanthropic Donations
    • 26% Product Licensing
    • 4% US Government Grants