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Barney
The original animated host of the show, Barney quickly became beloved by children in Raleigh, Durham, and surrounding suburbs. The unusual animation style allowed Barney to be manipulated live by his puppeteer, despite the fact that he looked like he was a hand-animated drawing (that's all there was back then). Barney was witty and friendly and goofy. You could visit him and talk to him live at the State Fair. He looked like kind of like a middle-aged guy in a leisure suit.

Jonathan Duffield was the original Barney. He has great memories of the fans from his Barney days. Unfortunately, he has bad memories of working at the station, which led to his departure in 1981. After the show, Jonathan spent years travelling around the world and is now living a life of ease on a white sandy beach with the whispers of "payow payow" drifting occasionally through the swaying palms.

 

Barney ("Bernard")
When Barney left the show in 1981, he was replaced with the blobular creature known as Bernard. Barney's bizarre leisure suit choice was nowhere near as odd as Bernard's nudity except a bowtie. Kids, don't try that at home. When he became host of the show, they called him Bernard for a short period of time, but then made the change to Barney.

Dale Wolf was the voice and operator of Bernard. Since the show, he has continued his career in the arts. His motivating force led to the founding of community theater organization the Lesbian Thesbians. He performed in feature films, Chesterfield, Member of the Wedding, Stephen King’s Night Flier and starred in the short independent film, Bang or a Whimper.

Dale teaches theater on a consulting basis and takes full responsibility for inspiring numerous young people into careers in acting, dance and film, thus joining the ranks of the un-employed.

Vito
All we ever saw of Vito was the hairy arm holding a phone. He held up the phone to Barney's head for TV Pow, the video game that consisted of kids calling in to the station and yelling "pow" to activate the weapon that blew up space invaders. Vito would make his hairy-armed appearances in the opening part of the game when the callers would talk to Barney and tell them their names and where they were from. It seemed like a lot of the callers were from Fuquay. "Pa-yohw." Two syllable pows. Awesome.

Tony Madejczyk was production assistant, props coordinator and helped out as "Vito" during the Bernard years. Tony says, "Some of the most rewarding live television work I've ever done has been with Laurie on Barney's Army. I know it wasn't Sesame Street, but I miss this kind of fun, funky and LIVE local programming for the young at heart."

 

Guppy the Clown &
Mrs. Guppy
The Guppys were regular visitors to the show. They would delight the audience by making balloon animals and general merriment. When the original Barney left, the Guppys filled in as hosts until Bernard's arrival.

Ron and Paulette Campbell performed as the Guppys. Ron was an attorney at the time and remembered the hectic schedule. "I would come rushing out of the courthouse a block away from the studio ditching my tie and lawyer stuff as I ran. Quick with the red nose, etc. and on with the show! It was the audience and their absolute loyalty that made the whole experience so darn much fun."

Ron and Paulette still entertain kids. They make an AMAZING Santa and Mrs. Claus, and their annual visit to Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh is a must-see event for the kids!