tele·​thon ˈte-lə-ˌthän How to pronounce telethon (audio)
: a long television program usually to solicit funds especially for a charity

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Richard Nixonshowed in 1968 how to use television to win elections by answering callers’ questions in a telethon. Arthur Herman, WSJ, 1 Dec. 2022 In a statement, head coach John Calipari said UK players approached him about participating in the telethon. Victoria Moorwood, The Enquirer, 2 Aug. 2022 On Saturday, a telethon featured live performances during a variety show hosted by WHAS11's Shay McAlister and 840 WHAS Radio's Terry Meiners. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, 6 June 2022 The telethon airs at 9 a.m. PT/noon ET Sunday, Feb. 12. oregonlive, 6 Feb. 2023 On top of donating toys, the Coyotes scheduled a telethon on Bally Sports to support the Phoenix Children’s Hope Fund during Friday’s game against the New York Islanders. Jenna Ortiz, The Arizona Republic, 16 Dec. 2022 Ukraine has also launched the production of 152-millimeter and 122-millimeter projectiles, Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksiy Danilov said during a telethon on Tuesday, reported on by Ukrinform. Kelsey Ables, Washington Post, 14 Dec. 2022 But this week, the institute, off Wurzbach Parkway on the North Side, was turned into a giant television studio in preparation for its annual telethon, which provides most of its budget. Richard Webner, San Antonio Express-News, 15 Dec. 2022 Plaza spoke excitedly on speakerphone to actor Clark Gregg, who was in the KTLA studio serving as part of the telethon’s celebrity phone bank. Cynthia Littleton, Variety, 10 Dec. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'telethon.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


tele- + -athon

First Known Use

1949, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of telethon was in 1949

Dictionary Entries Near telethon

Cite this Entry

“Telethon.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Apr. 2023.

Kids Definition


tele·​thon ˈtel-ə-ˌthän How to pronounce telethon (audio)
: a long television program usually to raise funds for a charity
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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