12 Nostalgic Albany TV Commercials You Need To Watch Again
I'm a sucker for Capital Region nostalgia and every now and again I go down these rabbit hole searches to find anything uniquely exclusive and retro when it comes to the 518. Recently I started searching on YouTube for old, vintage and classic television commercials that aired for Capital Region residents, and I kept finding more and more throwbacks that gave me all of the feels of being a kid again in the 80's, an awkward young adult in the 90's and a few from the early 2000's.
From an Albany electronic store ad from 1986 featuring Mike Tyson, to the legendary and iconic Water Slide World commercial, to a commercial starring Billy Fuccillo that left Tom Park and Caroline nearly speechless, here are 12 awesomely nostalgic Albany TV commercials that you really need to watch again.
World Trade Electronics: 1986
Located at 104 Central Ave. in Albany, World Trade Electronics was the place to be for color TV's, video cameras, and VCR's. Back in 1986, a 20-year-old Mike Tyson was featured in their commercial guaranteeing the "Lowethst pwiceths!"
Catskill Game Farm: 1980's
The rhinos, the elephants, the lions, the giraffes! Long before Tiger King, there was a place much closer to home that somehow, someway housed exotic animals that you'd normally only see on an African safari. How can we forget the the nostalgia, the charm, and the jingle of the Catskill Game Farm. If you watched "Days of Our Lives," you undoubtedly saw this beaut.
You'll find adventure, at Catskill Game Farm, adventure is in our nature!
Talk to the animals and you'll see just whisper in their ear...
You'll be surprised at what they know...
Ask any llama or deer
Buffalo are in the know...
They shout it loud and clear!
You'll find adventure at Catskill game farm, adventure is in our nature!
Duanes Toyland: 1986
I don't know who Duane is, but I want to apologize to him or anyone that answered the phone every day for a year when I called to see if Pac-Man for Atari or Cabbage Patch Kids were in stock. Eventually they literally told me to check their competitor Kay-Bee Toy and Hobby.
Fuccillo Kia HUUUUUGE Commercial: Circa 2009
The Billy Fuccillo "HUUUUUGE" ads are quintessential "You Know You're From the 518 When..." And how can any of us forget the time when Billy was able to finance a dead guy?
Saratoga Race Course: 1982
Back when Saratoga was the "August Place to Be" these were the ads that not only let us know what the big races were that weekend, but also tipped us off that we might get a super cool Saratoga trucker hat, blanket, or Angel Cordero Jr. bobblehead!
I Love NY: 1989
I remember as a kid seeing these catchy ads while wondering why I never got a sense of "wonder, excitement, history, adventure, and fun" living in Albany. Looking back, I realize it's because we never left Mercer Street. We've come a long way since the days of the catchy "I Loooooove New York" jingle but we're still waiting for Cuomo's people to release the ultra catchy "I Love NY Touch" jingle.
Grand Union: 1986
GU was a big deal in the Capital Region before they were bought out and rebranded as Tops or turned in Hannaford Supermarkets. I remember my parents in the 80's clipping coupons looking for the "Red Dot" specials on healthy and wholesome essentials like orange soda 2 Liters and Swanson TV dinners.
Enchanted Forest Water Safari: 1992
I had no clue where Old Forge was, and when I found it was a good two or three hours away I was bummed because we never got to go to Enchanted Forest Water Safari. This is another one of those classic nostalgia ads where the jingle is as famous as the place itself.
Hang on for the wild one...
Hang on for the cool one....
Enchanted Forest Water Safari (insert loud elephant trumpet here)....
Where the fun never stops!
Storytown and Gas Light Village Ads:1970's and 80's
These are obviously two separate places from our childhood, but the YouTube video I found has a bunch of different commercials from back in the day for each place. Storytown is now obviously the Great Escape but Gaslight Village closed down in 1989 and is now Charles R. Woods Park after the founder of Gaslight Village.
Who remembers the jingle for Gaslight?
Gaslight Village, yesterday's fun today...
Bo-deo-do, bo-deo-do, do-do...
Water Slide World: 1988
Water Slide World opened up in Lake George in the late 70's and had nearly a 40 year run closing for good in 2017. The jingle from this particular TV commercial put WSW right up there with anything from that Capital Region that we remember and hold near and dear to our nostalgic hearts. It's an absolute classic!
Water Slide World, I’m really crazy ’bout your wild slides (wild you bet!)
Water Slide World, the No. 1 in family fun (fun you bet!)
C’mon-a baby gonna slide, slide, slide
C’mon-a baby gonna glide, glide, glide
C’mon-a baby gonna slide, slide, slide
Go wayyyyy (?)
Gonna glide down, fly high!
Whirl around, touch the skyyyyyyy!
Water Slide World…I really love the way you feel.
Albany River Rats: 2002
I used to love going to River Rat games back in the day, especially in the late 90's when Albany had that intense rivalry with the Adirondack Red Wings. Try telling someone today that 20 years ago, there would be 9 or 10,000 fans at a Rats game on a Saturday night, and they'd think you're crazy. This was one of my favorite commercials - now 20 years old - featuring a man who claimed to be "The Rats #1 Fan." I'm pretty sure he was a real fan...I often wonder what he's doing now and if he still sports that thick, well-groomed goatee and perm. Amazing.
Koto Japanese Steakhouse: circa 2010
I'm not sure when this commercial first appeared, I'm guessing it's well over a decade old. And while Koto still exists, the jingle is what people remember as much as any meal you've eaten there or a chef who made the little squeezy man go pee-pee.
Experience the magic...
Experience the mystery...
The Koto experience...Koto
BONUS: Crossgates Mall Promo: 1984
This vintage promo introducing Crossgates Mall to the Capital Region is chock full of so many nostalgic nuggets I don't even know where to begin.
Back when malls had stores in them, Crossgates had some of the very best inside when it opened its doors in 1984. Ormond, The Limited, Merry-Go-Round, Barbara Moss, Tape World and more. The narration of this alone has all of the feels of the type of movie they'd show you in class when the teacher was hungover. Enjoy!