Did You Know…
- Stan and Jan Berenstain started drawing together in 1941 when they met in Miss Sweeny’s drawing class on the first day of art school at Philadelphia Museum School of Industrial Art (now called The University of the Arts).
- Before creating the Bears series, Stan and Jan Berenstain were known for their witty cartoon art and illustrations on the joys and foibles of parenting. The couple’s work was regularly published in such popular magazines as the Saturday Evening Post and Collier’s.
- The Berenstains had two sons, Leo and Mike.Mike continues to write and illustrate Berenstain Bears books in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, a beautiful region that very much resembles Bear Country.
- With more than 300 titles in print, the series stands as one of the most successful in the history of children's book publishing. The Berenstain Bears have also starred in 3 animated television series, five NBC holiday specials, and several edutainment software titles.
- In the mid-2000s, The Strong collaborated with the Berenstains to develop two original exhibits: The Berenstain Bears: Down a Sunny Dirt Road—still on view and a favorite of the pre-school set—and a pre-bear art exhibit called Child’s Play on the Crabgrass Frontier: The Baby Boom Cartoons of Stan and Jan Berenstain, displayed at the National Museum of Play at The Strong from July 2007 to April 2009.
- The Bears’ story began in 1962, when Stan and Jan Berenstain published their first book—The Big Honey Hunt—about a family of bears who live down a sunny dirt road in Bear Country.
- Theodor Seuss Giesel—Dr. Seuss—was the couple’s mentor and editor at Random House.
- Thanks to a generous donation from the Berenstain family, the more than 450 Berenstain Bears objects in the museum’s collection represent the full range of licensed Bears products through the years.
- The Strong also holds the Stan and Jan Berenstain Archive of Cartoon Art, which provides a unique glimpse of mid-to-late-20th-century family life in America as seen through the pop culture lens of syndicated comic strips, monthly comic series, and humorous books.