Aug. 07--NORFOLK -- In 1942, the Disney animated film "Bambi" taught us to care about about all the woodland creatures affected by fire.
Two years later came Smokey Bear, the symbol since then of America's wildfire prevention efforts, who turns 70 this year.
On Saturday, The Chrysler Museum of Art will open an exhibition on the evolution of the bear in a ranger hat, and the artist behind the animated character.
"Celebrating Smokey Bear: Rudy Wendelin and the Creation of an Icon" will include 19 original paintings by Wendelin as well as memorabilia, collectibles and preparatory drawings.
A free family day of Smokey-related activities will take place Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., including art projects, an exhibition tour at 11 a.m., and the chance to get your picture taken with Smokey the Bear from 12:30 to 3 p.m.
Gov. Terry McAuliffe has declared Saturday Smokey Bear Day in Virginia, timed for the show's opening but acknowledging the bear's 70th birthday and the 100th anniversary this year of the founding of the Virginia Department of Forestry.
The show is up through Feb. 1. Admission is free. The museum is at 1 Memorial Place.
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