Patrick Star - July 4, 2014

We've been spending the better part of this week discussing some of the well-known characters honored with their own stuffed animals.  Their honor is intensified by their inclusion in the vast collection of the American Treasure Tour, here in Oaks, Pennsylvania.  Today, we are not going to talk about Spongebob Squarepants.   The cartoon we are not talking has aired continuously since 1999, for nine seasons.  If you do the math, it will only confuse you.  No, today, we are talking about Spongebob's friend Patrick Star.

Patrick Star is Songebob's loyal friend, a pink starfish who might not win any I.Q. tests, but what he lacks in brain he more than compensates for in heart.  He is voiced by the 6'6" actor Bill Faggerbakke, known by fans of the sitcom Coach as Assistant Coach "Dauber" Dybinski. We can assure you that Patrick is in the tour, but he may not be that easy to find among all the other pieces in the collection.  Consider that a challenge!

QUESTION:  What are the names of Patrick Star's parents?

a)  Herb and Margie

b)  Squidworth and Sandy

c)  Ron and Sally

d)  Bleckwith and Fredina

ANSWER BELOW

HISTORY TODAY:

The second half of the year officially begins this week.  Now, we are closer to 2015 than we are to 2013. There are a few anniversaries to be celebrated today, although few Americans may be aware of them.  First and foremost, it was on this date in 1803 that Thomas Jefferson's decision to purchase the Louisiana Territory from Napoleon Bonaparte became public knowledge.  Many Americans were actually very unhappy about it.  For one, some saw the act as a violation of the Constitution.  For another, the slavery question would intensify as new lands would be opening up to the controversy.

Only fourteen years later, the opening of the American west officially begins in Rome, New York when shovel meets soil and the first dirt is removed for the Erie Canal.  It took eight years to complete but, when finished, it quickly transformed New York City into the most important harbor in the United States, having opened the Great Lakes region and beyond to eastern trade.

BIRTHDAYS:

We get to celebrate a future president today!  In 1872, Plymouth Notch, Vermont celebrated the birth of Calvin Coolidge, Jr. on Independence Day - the only president (thus far) born on the important national holiday.  Three men had died on July 4th (Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and James Monroe), but Coolidge was the only one born today.  He guided the country through the prosperous and colorful time of the 1920's upon the death of his predecessor, Warren Harding, and departed just in time to avoid the stock market crash of 1929.

Mitch Miller shares his birthday with Coolidge.  Born in 1911, the famous conductor, recording producer, and oboist grew up in Rochester, New York.  He married Frances Alexander in 1935 and they remained together for 65 years, until her passing in 2000.  He is likely best-known for his short-lived tv series Sing Along with Mitch.  From 1961 through 1964, you could follow the bouncing ball and sing popular tunes with Mr. Miller. 

QUOTE:  Don't expect to build up the weak by pulling down the strong. - Calvin Coolidge

ANSWER:  a)  Herb and Margie