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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Got YOUR Red Nose?

No, this doesn't refer to Rudolph the Reindeer (more on that famous reindeer below).

Red Nose Day is Thursday, May 26, when NBC will host a live TV event which will include stars of comedy, film, TV, and music. The 2016 Red Nose Fund is a program sponsored by Comic Relief. Monies raised will go to charities working to deliver basic needs to children living in poverty in the U.S. and some of the poorest communities worldwide.

Where to get your Red Nose . . .
At Walgreens, since this chain is is the exclusive U.S. retailer of red noses and related materials to raise funds that go to the Red Nose Day Fund which will distribute funds raised. 

It's not a "new" event in the UK . . .
In the United Kingdom, Red Nose Day has been a popular fundraiser for 30 years and is held every 2 years. Since its 1988 launch, it's nearly become a British institution since it was co-founded in 1985 by writer-director Richard Curtis (Love Actually, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Notting Hill, Bridget Jones's Diary). Comic Relief UK is built on the premise that media and celebrities can raise money and awareness of poverty to save and change millions of lives.

But relatively "new" in the U.S.
Unlike its British counterpart, Red Nose Day in the U.S. started in 2015. The inaugural event special raised over $23 million split among 12 domestic and international charities. 

The U.S. and UK Comic Relief are independent sister organizations sharing a goal to effect positive change through the power of entertainment. 

Find more information at rednoseday.org


What are you waiting for? — Get your own red nose — there's still time!

Now, about that Rudolph, the reindeer . . .
In 1939, Robert Lewis May created Rudolph, the young red-nosed reindeer buck as a copywriting assignment for the Chicago-based retailer Montgomery Ward. He was said to have considered "other" names (Rollo or Reginald) before deciding on Rudolph originally a moose, but later changed as a reindeer was deemed "friendlier".

May's project happened as MW had been buying and giving away coloring books at Christmas annually. MW executives decided that creating an in-house book would save money and be a good-will gesture to customers. Rudolph almost didn't get that signature red nose as this trait was closely associated with drunks. The story idea was rejected until Denver Gillen, May's illustrator friend at MW, draw reindeer similar to those that May's 4-year old daughter enjoyed at the Chicago Zoo. The bouncy red-nosed animal character that Gillen created overcame management objections. 

The book was a give-away during the 1939 holiday season at MW and proved very popular with shoppers; 2.4 million copies were given out. Then, WW II restrictions on paper use prohibited a re-issue until 1946, when 3.6 million copies were given to MW shoppers. 
In 1948, Johnny Marks, May's brother-in-law, adapted Rudolph into a song that was turned down by popular vocalists like Bing Crosby and Dinah Shore. Big Huge whoops since in 1949 the "singing cowboy" Gene Autry recorded Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and it hit No. 1 on the Billboard pop singles charts that Christmas selling over 2.5 million copies the first year and 25 million copies overall. It remained the second best-selling record until the 1960s and has sold more records than that "other" Christmas song, coincidentally Crosby's White Christmas.

NOW you know more about red noses than before reading this post.

9 comments:

Sandra said...

so Ruduolph is only a tad older than I am, i know he was around when i was a baby...

Emma Springfield said...

Red Nose Day is a worthwhile charity. And I loved reading the history of Rudolph. Thank you.

William Kendall said...

A whole lot I didn't know! That sounds like a good cause.

Mildred said...

Very cute red nose pics. Amazing the $$ that this raises for such an important cause.

Anvilcloud said...

First I've heard of this day, living in the backwater that is Canada. :)

Denise inVA said...

What a great tradition and so nice to see you all with your red noses :)

Connie said...

I've never heard of Red Nose Day! Sounds like a worthy cause.

diane b said...

We used to have that day but haven't seen it for a while. I remember cars even had red noses on .

Kay said...

Hello, Beatrice (Dorothy). Thank you so much for your visit and especially for your kind comment. I always love meeting new cyber friends. I've never heard of Red Nose Day. Love your photos.

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