Make the most of a beautiful day in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania by attending the First-day-of-issue Dedication Ceremony for the United States Postal Service’s new Mister Rogers Forever stamp.
Postmaster General and Chief Executive Officer Megan J. Brennan, the first female Postmaster General, will preside over the ceremony, scheduled for Friday, March 23, 2018, at 11am (ET). Join the crowd at this free, public event at WQED’s Fred Rogers Studio, 4802 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Not in the Pittsburgh area? Watch the ceremony live on the US Postal Service’s Facebook page at facebook.com/USPS.
Either way, the USPS asks that the hashtag #MisterRogersStamp be used when sharing online.
From the USPS announcement:
Fred Rogers (1928–2003) was known as a beloved television neighbor to generations of children. His groundbreaking public television series “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” inspired and educated young viewers with warmth, sensitivity, and honesty.
Filmed in Pittsburgh and first distributed nationally in 1968 by a predecessor of the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), the program was innovative and unlike anything on television for children at that time. Each episode of “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” began with its host welcoming the audience into his television house. While singing “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” Rogers always put on his trademark cardigan, changed into sneakers, and then introduced the day’s topic. He discussed many of the experiences of growing up, delicately covering everything from sharing and friendship to difficult subjects like anger, fear, and divorce.
While not featured on the stamp, the neighborhood included friends, special guests, and “puppet” characters voiced by Mister Rogers, including Henrietta Pussycat, X The Owl, King Friday XIII (thirteenth), Queen Sara Saturday, Daniel Striped Tiger, and many others.
Other stamps to be released in 2018 include:
- Love Flourishes (Love series)
- Year of the Dog (Celebrating Lunar New Year series)
- Lena Horne (Black Heritage series)
- US Flag (new folded flag design)
- Bioluminescent Life
- Illinois Statehood (Statehood series)
- STEM Education
- Peace Rose
- Sally Ride
- Flag Act of 1818
- Frozen Treats (various icy pops on sticks)
- O Beautiful (America The Beautiful scenes)
- World War I: Turning the Tide (soldier gripping flag)
- Birds in Winter (chickadee, cardinal, woodpecker)
- John Lennon (Music Icons series)
- The Art of Magic
- Byodo-In Temple (Hawai‘i, Priority Mail)
- Sleeping Bear Dunes (national park, Priority Mail Express)
- Meyer Lemons (2-cent definitive stamp)
The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products, and services to fund its operations.
You didn’t have to live in Pittsburgh to grow up with Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, though those of us who were children in the ‘Burgh remember the show broadcasting on the Pittsburgh public television station. His Neighborhood of Make-Believe was known and loved by children nationwide.
He was more than just Mister Rogers. In 1969, he appealed to the US government (Congress) to fund better television programming for children. See the 1969 video on YouTube.
(I’m old enough to remember when Prince Tuesday was a baby, and Lady Elaine Fairchilde seemed scary… early 1970s. My oldest watched as Purple Panda — an outer space visitor — became a part of the neighborhood. Re-runs are still available for children today.)
In the 1990s, WQED opened the Neighborhood of Make-Believe for one day a year (if I remember correctly), and area parents could take their children to meet Mr. McFeely, walk through the Neighborhood, and view a video of Mister Rogers.
In the new milenium, despite Fred Rogers’ death in 2003, his legacy carries on through a television arts scholarship program, and The Fred Rogers Center — located at Saint Vincent College in Fred Rogers’ hometown of Latrobe, Pennsylvania.