Stillwater News Press

June 21, 2013

Where in the world is Flat Owlbert?

By Chase Rheam
Stillwater NewsPress

STILLWATER, Okla. — A recent program from the Oklahoma WONDERtorium encourages sharing and learning as families travel and go from their day-to-day lives this summer.

The children’s museum is offering its mascot, Owlbert, as a printout titled “Flat Owlbert” for individuals and families with which to take pictures and post to the organization’s Facebook page.

“We just thought it would be fun to take our mascot and provide it for families to take on their travels this summer,” said Programs Coordinator Debbie Williams.

“Flat Owlbert” has already attended a wedding and experienced a hot air balloon ride, according to pictures posted on the WONDERtorium Facebook page and it’s website.

“We just really launched the program last week and it is beginning to pick up,” Williams said. “We have the cardboard ‘Flat Owlberts’ you can pick up at the museum or you can download them at our website.”

Williams said the organization encourages everyone to take their Owlbert on vacation or to local outings, including the museum itself. The photos can also be tagged on Instagram with “#flatowlbert.”

“We can see where ‘Flat Owlbert’ might encourage families to get active and photograph him while they’re out on a nature hike or swimming,” Williams said. “We can see it going through many venues.”

The inspiration for the project comes from a few sources.

One is the popular “Flat Stanley Project,” which is based on a 1964 children’s book. That project began in 1995 under Dale Hubert,  a third-grade schoolteacher in Canada, who would print out, color and keep a journal documenting activities and places their “Flat Stanley” had been. Another inspiration was the Stillwater NewsPress and a former promotion in which readers were encouraged to take pictures with a copy of the NewsPress while on vacation.

“I remember my family going to London and I packed my Newspress and we held it up in front of the Tower of London,” she said. “That’s what really inspired me to conceive the idea.”

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