Kids’ Choice Awards

Kids' Choice Awards logo from 1988

Published: February 8, 2020
Updated: March 7, 2023

Nickelodeon’s Kids’ Choice Awards (often shortened to “KCA” or “the KCAs”) got its start in 1987 under the banner of “Nickelodeon’s Big Ballot”. That year, the winners were announced over a four-week period as part of the network’s weekend TV program Rated K: For Kids by Kids [Los Angeles Times, 28 March 1987]. Nickelodeon considers this to be the first official Kids’ Choice Awards, despite lacking the name.

The first celebrity-hosted, and actually titled Kids’ Choice Awards, took place in 1988 and has aired almost every year since, except for 1993.

The Hosts

# Date Host(s) Co-Host(s) / Notes
1 Mar-28-1987
Matt Nespole,
Rebecca Schwager,
Mark Shanahan
movie winners (on 3/28)
TV winners (on 4/4)
music winners (on 4/11)
sports winners (on 4/18)
2 Apr-18-1988 Tony Danza Debbie Gibson,
Brian Robbins,
Dan Schneider,
Marc Summers (Double Dare segments)
3 Jun-25-1989 Nicole Eggert,
Wil Wheaton
4 Apr-23-1990 Dave Coulier Candace Cameron,
David Faustino
5 Apr-22-1991 Corin Nemec
6 Nov-14-1992 Holly Robinson Brian Austin Green,
Tori Spelling
7 May-7-1994 Candace Cameron,
Joey Lawrence
Marc Weiner
8 May-20-1995 Whitney Houston
9 May-11-1996 Whitney Houston Rosie O’Donnell (NYC)
10 Apr-19-1997 Rosie O’Donnell Terry Bradshaw
11 Apr-4-1998 Rosie O’Donnell
12 May-1-1999 Rosie O’Donnell
13 Apr-15-2000 Rosie O’Donnell David Arquette,
LL Cool J,
Mandy Moore,
Frankie Muniz
14 Apr-21-2001 Rosie O’Donnell
15 Apr-20-2002 Rosie O’Donnell
16 Apr-12-2003 Rosie O’Donnell
17 Apr-3-2004 Cameron Diaz,
Mike Myers
18 Apr-2-2005 Ben Stiller
19 Apr-1-2006 Jack Black
20 Mar-31-2007 Justin Timberlake
21 Mar-29-2008 Jack Black
22 Mar-28-2009 Dwayne Johnson
23 Mar-27-2010 Kevin James
24 Apr-2-2011 Jack Black
25 Mar-31-2012 Will Smith
26 Mar-23-2013 Josh Duhamel
27 Mar-29-2014 Mark Wahlberg
28 Mar-28-2015 Nick Jonas
29 Mar-12-2016 Blake Shelton
30 Mar-11-2017 John Cena
31 Mar-24-2018 John Cena
32 Mar-23-2019 DJ Khaled
33 May-2-2020 Victoria Justice (recorded remotely; subtitled “Celebrate Together”; originally scheduled for Mar-22-2020 with Chance the Rapper as host, but canceled due to COVID-19)
34 Mar-13-2021 Kenan Thompson
35 Apr-9-2022 Miranda Cosgrove,
Rob Gronkowski
36 Mar-4-2023 Nate Burleson,
Charli D’Amelio

Surrounding Programming

With the large audience that would tune-in for the event, Nickelodeon would often schedule new episodes before and/or after the awards show. The lead-out spot has served as a way to introduce many new series as well, including The Angry Beavers, CatDog, and most notably, SpongeBob SquarePants.

Key: (P) = Series Premiere; (N) = New Episode; (S) = Special

# Date KCA Day/Time Lead-In Program Lead-Out Program
1a Mar-28-1987 Sat 4p Special Delivery:
Chocky (1984)
Mr. Wizard’s World
1b Apr-4-1987 Sat 4p Special Delivery:
The Little Princess (1939)
Mr. Wizard’s World
1c Apr-11-1987 Sat 4p Special Delivery:
BMX: Win with the Pros
Mr. Wizard’s World
1d Apr-18-1987 Sat 4p Special Delivery:
Abra Cadabra (1983)
Mr. Wizard’s World
2 Apr-18-1988 Mon 7p Dennis the Menace Make Room for Daddy
3 Jun-25-1989 Sun 7p Count Duckula Looney Tunes on Nick at Nite
4 Apr-23-1990 Mon 7p Make the Grade The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis
5 Apr-22-1991 Mon 7p Make the Grade Mister Ed
6 Nov-14-1992 Sat 8p (LIVE) Rugrats The Ren & Stimpy Show
7 May-7-1994 Sat 8p (LIVE) Rugrats The Ren & Stimpy Show
8 May-20-1995 Sat 8p (LIVE) Rugrats The Ren & Stimpy Show
9 May-11-1996 Sat 8p (LIVE) All That All That
10 Apr-19-1997 Sat 8p (LIVE) Kenan & Kel The Angry Beavers (P)
11 Apr-4-1998 Sat 8p (LIVE) Rugrats CatDog (P)
12 May-1-1999 Sat 8p (LIVE) Rugrats (N) SpongeBob SquarePants (P)
13 Apr-15-2000 Sat 8p (LIVE) Rugrats Caitlin’s Way (N)
14 Apr-21-2001 Sat 8p (LIVE) Rugrats The Brothers Garcia (N)
15 Apr-20-2002 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants The Secrets of the Jimmy Neutron Movie (S)
16 Apr-12-2003 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants All Grown Up (P)
17 Apr-3-2004 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants (N) Danny Phantom (P)
18 Apr-2-2005 Sat 8p (LIVE) The Fairly OddParents (N) Drake & Josh (N)
19 Apr-1-2006 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants (N) Romeo! (N)
20 Mar-31-2007 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants (N) SpongeBob SquarePants
21 Mar-29-2008 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants (N) Dance on Sunset (P)
22 Mar-28-2009 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants The Penguins of Madagascar (P)
23 Mar-27-2010 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants VICTORiOUS (P)
24 Apr-2-2011 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants (N) VICTORiOUS (N)
25 Mar-31-2012 Sat 8p (LIVE) FRED: The Show (N) How to Rock (N)
26 Mar-23-2013 Sat 8p (LIVE) The Fairly OddParents (N) Monsters vs. Aliens (P)
27 Mar-29-2014 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants (N) Instant Mom (N)
28 Mar-28-2015 Sat 8p (LIVE) The Thundermans (N) Harvey Beaks (P)
29 Mar-12-2016 Sat 8p (LIVE) SpongeBob SquarePants (N) School of Rock (P)
30 Mar-11-2017 Sat 8p (LIVE) Henry Danger (N) Hunter Street (P)
31 Mar-24-2018 Sat 8p (LIVE) Henry Danger (N) Knight Squad (N)
32 Mar-23-2019 Sat 8p (LIVE) Henry Danger (N) The Substitute (S) / Henry Danger
33 May-2-2020 Sat 8p Danger Force Tyler Perry’s Young Dylan
34 Mar-13-2021 Sat 7:30p (LIVE) Danger Force (N) Side Hustle (N)
35 Apr-9-2022 Sat 7:30p (LIVE) Danger Force (N) iCarly (2021) (N)
36 Mar-4-2023 Sat 7:00p (LIVE) Sing (2016) (N) Big Nate (N)

Total Viewer Ratings

Once a top-rated viewing event each year, the KCAs hit their peak in the late-2000s, with 2009 remaining the most-watched. Ratings for 1987-1992 are not available. The ratings provided below are for Nickelodeon only. The show has simulcast on other channels, mainly Nicktoons and TeenNick, since 2015. (1994-2000 ratings via Ratings Ryan.)

# Date Total Viewers
7 May-7-1994 2.377 million
8 May-20-1995 1.833 million
9 May-11-1996 3.397 million
10 Apr-19-1997 4.660 million
11 Apr-4-1998 5.279 million
12 May-1-1999 5.209 million
13 Apr-15-2000 3.702 million
14 Apr-21-2001 4.233 million
15 Apr-20-2002 5.856 million
16 Apr-12-2003 3.140 million
17 Apr-3-2004 5.263 million
18 Apr-2-2005 5.177 million
19 Apr-1-2006 5.942 million
20 Mar-31-2007 6.115 million
21 Mar-29-2008 7.449 million
22 Mar-28-2009 7.675 million
23 Mar-27-2010 7.639 million
24 Apr-2-2011 7.287 million
25 Mar-31-2012 6.162 million
26 Mar-23-2013 5.821 million
27 Mar-29-2014 5.033 million
28 Mar-28-2015 3.630 million
29 Mar-12-2016 3.321 million
30 Mar-11-2017 3.054 million
31 Mar-24-2018 1.868 million
32 Mar-23-2019 1.293 million
33 May-2-2020 850,000
34 Mar-13-2021 529,000
35 Apr-9-2022 593,000
36 Mar-4-2023 343,000

KCA Logos

Nickelodeon's 1st Annual Big Ballot logo from 1987

Following the Big Ballot, the Kids’ Choice Awards used the same logo (with the only modification being the ribbon showing either “Nickelodeon” or “Awards” across it) from 1988 through 1996. For the 10th annual event in 1997, the awards show used a new logo. Since then, each year has featured a different logo and theme to go along with the event. While some of the logos may vary slightly between promotional advertisements and what’s actually featured at the awards ceremony, the most notable difference between the two was in 2001 (as shown in the pictures below).

Kids' Choice Awards logos from the 1980s until 2000
Kids' Choice Awards logos from 2001 until 2005
Kids' Choice Awards logos from 2006 until 2010
Kids' Choice Awards logos from 2011 until 2015
Kids' Choice Awards logos from 2016 until 2020
Kids' Choice Awards logos from 2021 until the current year