For half a century, Scholastic's Clifford the Big Red Dog property has endured to become a leading children's favorite. With more than 126 million books in print and a television series that is broadcast in more than 30 countries and 12 languages around the globe, it is not surprising that Scholastic would celebrate Clifford's golden anniversary with fanfare.
Launched Sept. 24 with the Biggest Birthday Party Ever campaign, Scholastic kicked off a year-long national promotion to celebrate 50 years of Clifford at classrooms around the U.S. in addition to the launch of new publishing initiatives, a birthday card program and a national sweepstakes leading up to his official birthday, Feb. 14, 2013.
The Clifford property found a home at Scholastic in 1962. Commercial artist Norman Bridwell brought original Clifford the Big Red Dog artwork to the publishing house and soon a book was in the works. The partnership proved to be beneficial to both parties: Bridwell landed a book deal that would allow him to support his family, while Clifford helped establish Scholastic Books as a premiere publishing company.
Fifty years on and Clifford continues to be a flagship brand for Scholastic that is supported in all aspects of the business–from publishing to consumer products.
"Scholastic certainly does not have any other brands that are 50-years-old. I'd say it's our most important brand," says Leslye Schaefer, senior vice president of marketing and consumer products, Scholastic Media. "Clifford really embodies what Scholastic is all about. We're a mission-driven company that reinforces the love of learning and that follows Clifford's goals, including his 10 Big Ideas."