The Johnstown Monster

Does anyone remember The Johnstown Monster, a kiddie film from the '70s about children who construct a fake sea monster to promote tourism in their town?

I think I saw this on TV a time or two, but I never knew the name of it. At least, the plot sounds pretty familiar.

I remember it. I think the kids had this little ditty that they’d sing about it, but I don’t recall nay of the words.

I remember them singing ‘The Johnstown monster / Kai-yi-yi-yi!’ or something like that, with the first part descending like ‘We’ll all be gay when’ in When Johnny Comes Marching Home and the last bit starting on a low note and then finishing on three high notes.

Could be wrong, but that’s how I remember it.

It’s one of those sunday afternoon made for children movies.

That’s basically what I remember. I seem to recall something about its “gaping maw” and “scaly claw” or something sounding like that.

I remember a similar story from The Mad Scientists Club by Bertrand Brinley, one of my favorite childhood books. The story was called “The Strange Sea Monster of Strawberry Cove” According to this review, Disney produced a movie version. The plot description in its IMDb entry doesn’t sound much like the original story or Johnny LA’s query, so maybe it was a different flick.