When Fred Rogers was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in February of 1999, he said that fame was “a four-letter word like tape or zoom or face or pain or life or love.” What ultimately matters, he said, is what we do with it.
Mr. Rogers, as he was best known, used his fame to spread kindness, generosity of spirit, and caring for neighbors wherever they live in the world. Now, the man who entertained and educated children on his beloved television show (and taught them the beauty of changing into cardigans and slippers when they came into the house) is being honored with a Google Doodle.
The Google Doodle is timed to mark the 51st anniversary of the first filming of the first episode of the beloved television show Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. This year also marks the 50th anniversary of the show’s premiere in 1968. Rogers was both a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School of Child Development and an ordained Presbyterian minister who used the media as his pulpit. His calming presence was a fixture on TV until August 21, 2001, when the final episode of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood aired.
To honor the world’s most famous neighbor, the site launched a charming stop-motion animated video that takes viewers back to the Land of Make Believe. In the video, a familiar passenger in a cardigan rides a little red trolley through a small town, warming the hearts of everyone he meets. The video was created in collaboration with some of those who knew him best—the Fred Rogers Center, Fred Rogers Productions, and BixPix Entertainment.
In addition to the Doodle, Google will launch a behind-the-scenes video exploring the making of the Doodle as well as a Mister Rogers exhibit on Google Arts & Culture.