For over 30 years, Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion has transported audiences to the mythical town of Lake Wobegon, Minnesota, “where all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking and all the children are above-average.”
Garrison Keillor was born in Anoka, Minnesota, in 1942. His career in radio began at college radio station KUOM/Minnesota, where he worked as an announcer. In 1969, Keillor joined the staff of Minnesota Public Radio and embarked on a career as a professional writer.
Keillor was writing an article for The New Yorker about radio’s long-running Grand Ole Opry when he created A Prairie Home Companion, a weekly show devoted to music and Keillor’s witty, increasingly popular writings. A Prairie Home Companion debuted on July 6, 1974. By the 1980s, Keillor’s low-key musings about the folks in Lake Wobegon had made the program a fixture of public radio stations.
Keillor ended A Prairie Home Companion in 1987 but utilized a similar format two years later for his American Radio Company. Finally, in 1992, he returned the show to Minnesota and revived the name A Prairie Home Companion. Today, the show is broadcast on over 500 radio stations, to an audience of some three million listeners.
Garrison Keillor was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1994.