It hasn’t been a great week for soap fans, what with the news that Guiding Light was canceled, but there is a little bit to celebrate today. Today is As The World Turns 53rd anniversary!!

Congratulations to the cast, writers and crew on reaching this huge milestone!

ATWT debuted on April 2, 1956 as a 30 minute program; at that time, all of the other soap operas were only 15 minutes long. Viewers were slow to respond to the show’s new, longer format but once it caught on all of the other soap operas began following in Oakdale’s footsteps! In 1959 it became the top rated soap opera and stayed at number one for 12 years! Can you believe it? Of course you can, you’re a fan!!

Helen Wagner (Nancy Hughes) quickly became a household name, along with Don Hastings (Bob Hughes) and Eileen Fulton (Lisa Miller Grimaldi). In fact, Helen’s Nancy has become the longest running character played by only one actor on television! That is quite a feat!

Irma Phillips, the creator of the show, said, “As the world turns, we know the bleakness of winter, the promise of spring, the fullness of summer and the harvest of autumn – the cycle of life is complete. What is true of the world, nature, is true of man – he too has his cycle.” Those same words have been quoted throughout the show. In fact, one Christmas Nancy quoted that verse to several of the grandchildren.

Are you missing some of the ‘good old days’ of As The World Turns? Check out this classic clip of Kim and Nancy to relive one of those times!

And here is a classic moment from Carly and Jack!