I think it was 1964 when I first heard of and saw Big Daddy Roth. I lived in Melbourne Beach Florida, I was 9 years old, and I loved his "Rat Fink" cartoon...not to mention the really cool bikes and autos that were always on TV in the spring...who'da thunk...I didn't know it was because of his sponsorship of the the boardwalk and beach shows...not until another 14 years did I catch onto "Big Daddy Roth". I also registered to win a motorcycle from our local 7-11 store, I was again...9, maybe 10 years old. Needless to say...I didn't win it.
Chessie, I'm a bit confused by some of your comments?I don't think Ed "Big Daddy" Roth sponsored the shows you speak of. There was a A-hole named Karl Smith (now also dead), in Florida that copied Roth and called himself "Big Daddy Rat". He had a copycat Rat Fink mascot, sold t-shirts and even dressed up like Roth with a goatee, top hat, and tails. He's the one that started the Rat's Hole Shows in Daytona Beach. Even though he died they still have them.
Yup you are absolutely Right! Karl Smith used the initials BDR just like Roth and went by the name "Big Daddy Rat",he dressed the same and offered the same type of products etc.Roth really didn't appreciate it and Smith haunted him for over 30 years.An interesting thing.. I believe that Karl Smith passed away about one year after Roth did and believe it or not as I remember he passed away on Roth's Birthday.. March 4, 2002I can just see Ed now... Catching up to Smith at the pearly gates while banging him on his head with his halo!
That's strange and interesting about the day he passed. A real copy cat till the end.Chessie isn't the first person I've heard to mix them up.The BDR Fan Club members (and there's tons of them), know the real score.
Thanks for telling the truth for those of us who were just kids during the late fifties /early sixties. I used to ride my bike to the Rat'sHole on main street and thought all these years I was hanging with MR Roth. What an eye opener. I'm 60 now and finally know the truth
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