Sunday, August 9, 2009

Smokey Bear turns 65 today!

Happy Birthday to Smokey Bear, the mascot of the U. S. Forest Service created to educate the public on the dangers of forest fires.

Smokey Bear's famous message "Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires" was created in 1944 by the Ad Council. It’s the longest running PSA campaign in U.S. history.

Smokey's correct full name is Smokey Bear. In 1952, the songwriters Steve Nelson and Jack Rollins had a hit with "Smokey the Bear". The pair said that "the" was added to Smokey's name to keep the song's rhythm. This small change has caused confusion among Smokey fans ever since.

Smokey's debut poster (see picture above - on right) was released on August 9, 1944, which is considered his birthday, making him 65 today.

Be sure to check out the Smokey Bear website to see the history of the AD campaign. The site includes an interactive trail by decade with an extensive collection of old posters, TV/radio spots (including the famous Bambi TV spot), and other memorabilia.

Jeff Detailed information on trails in the Smoky Mountains; includes trail descriptions, key features, pictures, video, maps, elevation profiles, news, and more.

Smoky Mountain Day Hikers Store


JOE TODD said...

Thanks for the post

Stacy said...

Thanks for your post about Smokey's birthday! I thought you might be interested in sharing this e-card with your readers where they can encourage their family and friends to "get their smokey on" with tips to prevent wildfires:

Here's a widget you can embed on your blog that celebrates Smokey's 65 years of hard work with a quiz on pop culture facts. It includes a link to the e-card at the end:

We're also celebrating Smokey on Facebook and polling people on their favorite Smokey PSA. To see all of Smokey's work and cast your vote, go here:

Thanks so much for your help in celebrating this great milestone!


Stacy Cohen
Home Front Communications for the Ad Council

~Follow @Smokey_Bear on Twitter!