PITTSBURGH–(PRNewswire)–It really is “a beautiful day in the neighborhood” now that the U.S. Postal Service has immortalized Mister Rogers on a Forever stamp.
Postmaster General Megan J. Brennan dedicated the stamp honoring Fred Rogers on March 23 at the studio named in his honor where it all began 50 years ago — WQED’s Fred Rogers Studio in Pittsburgh.
“Mister Rogers and his Neighborhood of Make-Believe made the ups and downs of life easier to understand for the youngest members of our society,” said Brennan. “In Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, children learned, in a safe space, how to be a friend and create relationships. He shaped generations with his kindness and compassion. It’s why we honor him today.”
Joining Brennan in the dedication were The Fred Rogers Company President and CEO Paul Siefken, McFeely-Rogers Foundation Executive Director James R. Okonak and WQED-FM Artistic Director Jim Cunningham.
“We are proud to celebrate the enduring impact of Fred Rogers and Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood with this new stamp from the United States Postal Service,” said Siefken. “Fred Rogers left an indelible mark on generations of young audiences through his groundbreaking series, and his timeless wisdom and important messages of inclusion and neighborliness remain just as relevant today as they were 50 years ago.”
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.
The stamp features Walt Seng’s photograph of Rogers in a red cardigan and also includes puppet King Friday XIII, a Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood character hailing from “The Neighborhood of Make-Believe.” The words “Forever” and “USA” appear in the left corner.
Each episode of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood began with its host welcoming the audience into his television “house.” While singing the show’s theme song “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?,” which he composed along with hundreds of other songs, 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, like sharing and friendship, and difficult subjects like anger, fear, divorce and death.
Every episode also featured a Trolley visit to the Neighborhood of Make-Believe, where the personalities and interactions of many characters helped impart real-life lessons. Puppets like the self-important King Friday, wise Queen Sara Saturday, curious X the Owl, and shy Daniel Striped Tiger co-existed with human friends like King Friday’s niece Lady Aberlin and deliveryman Mr. McFeely.
Mister Rogers always managed to find wonder in seemingly everyday things, turning visits to factories, farms, and museums into engaging and educational journeys. Over the years, many guests, including famous musicians, artists, and authors, dropped by to visit Mister Rogers and share their talents.
New episodes of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood aired nationally from 1968 to 2001. To generations of viewers who grew up enjoying his show, Rogers remains a beloved figure.
Art director Derry Noyes of Washington, DC, designed the stamp.
The Mister Rogers stamp is being issued as a Forever stamp. This Forever stamp will always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce price.