Smokey Bear Is Getting A Makeover — And A Snapchat Lens

Smokey’s social media game is on fire.

Image via Wendy/Flickr.

“Only you can prevent wildfires.” We all know the mantra well because it’s been Smokey Bear’s slogan for the past 73 years. Whether you’ve seen him holding a fire danger sign at the entrance of a national forest or praising fire safety on TV, he deserves more attention than ever in light of a recent uptick in wildfires. Luckily, his new public service announcements are lit enough to spark some interest.

Partly to raise awareness about the little-known causes of wildfires and partly to bring Smokey Bear up to speed, the U.S. Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters partnered with the Ad Council to revamp Smokey’s image. Thanks to new artwork by Brian Edward Miller, Evan Hecox, Janna Mattia, and Victoria Ying and social profiles on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snaphat, Smokey Bear is now fully emerged in the 21st century.

Ever since the original, real-life Smokey Bear was rescued from a New Mexico blaze as a cub in 1950, he’s served as a gentle reminder to camp conscientiously — not to mention one of the most notable American icons to date. Though there’s still plenty of work to do when it comes to spreading awareness. U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell said in a press release,

“Humans cause nearly 90 percent of all wildfires nationwide, which today burn hotter and longer, destroying millions of forested acres and homes; Smokey needs our help now more than ever. It is helpful to provide information to children and adults about the less commonly known wildfire causes such as improperly burning debris and not fully extinguishing ashes and hot coals. By bringing awareness and inspiring responsibility, we hope to show how important it is to be mindful of how everyday activities can start harmful fires.”

Another fun fact: You can blame Steve Nelson and Jack Rollins for starting the controversy over including a “the” in Smokey’s name. While many have been calling him “Smokey the Bear” since their popular 1952 song debuted, his real name has always been a little simpler: just Smokey Bear. It’s cleaner.

With all the drama surrounding national parks this year at the hands of a less-caring administration, it really is up to us to preserve and protect what beautiful natural landscapes we have left. The Trump administration has moved to water down protections for public lands in the hopes of opening up pathways for extensive oil drilling and privatization of national parks. This goes against a century-long tradition of designating public lands as national monuments, effectively preserving them for future generations and maintaining the health of the ecosystem as a whole. That, combined with the Trump administration’s aggressive denial of climate change, means it’s entirely up to us to protect the environment — for both our sake and for generations to come.

via The Howard Stern Show / YouTube

Former Secretary of State, first lady, and winner of the popular vote in the 2016 presidential election, Hillary Clinton, sat own for an epic, two-and-a--half hour interview with Howard Stern on his SiriusXM show Wednesday.

She was there to promote "The Book of Gutsy Women," a book about heroic women co-written with her daughter, Chelsea Clinton.

In the far-reaching conversation, Clinton and the self-proclaimed "King of All Media" and, without a doubt, the best interviewer in America discussed everything from Donald Trump's inauguration to her sexuality.

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Offering parental leave for new fathers could help close the gender gap, removing the unfair "motherhood penalty" women receive for taking time off after giving birth. However, a new study finds that parental leave also has a pay gap. Men are less likely to take time off, however, when they do, they're more likely to get paid for it.

A survey of 2,966 men and women conducted by New America found that men are more likely to receive paid parental leave. Over half (52%) of fathers had fully paid parental leave, and 14% of fathers had partially paid parental leave. In comparison, 33% of mothers had fully paid parental leave and 19% had partially paid parental leave.

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Bans on plastic bags and straws can only go so far. Using disposable products, like grabbing a plastic fork when you're on the go, can be incredibly convenient. But these items also contribute to our growing plastic problem.

Fortunately, you can cut down on the amount of waste you produce by cutting down on disposable products. And even more fortunately, there are sustainable (and cute) replacements that won't damage the environment.

Coconut bowls


Who says sustainable can't also be stylish? These cute coconut bowls were handmade using reclaimed coconuts, making each piece one of a kind. Not only are they organic and biodegradable, but they're also durable, in case your dinner parties tend to get out of hand. The matching ebony wood spoons were polished with the same coconut oil as the bowls.

Cocostation Set of 2 Vietnamese Coconut Bowls and Spoons, $14.99; at Amazon

Solar powered phone charger


Why spend time looking around for an outlet when you can just harness the power of the sun? This solar powered phone charger will make sure your phone never dies as long as you can bask in the sun's rays. As an added bonus, this charger was made using eco-friendly silicone rubber. It's win-win all around.

Dizaul Solar Charger, 5000mAh Portable Solar Power Bank, $19.95; at Amazon, $19.95; at Amazon

Herb garden kit

Planter Pro

Put some green in your life with this herb planter. The kit comes with everything you need to get a garden growing, including a moisture meter that helps you determine if your herbs are getting the right amount of food to flourish. All the seeds included are certified to be non-GMO and non-hybrids, meaning you can have fresh, organic herbs right at your fingertips.

Planter Pro's Herb Garden Cedar Planter, $39.00; at Amazonedar Planter, $39.00; at Amazon

Reusable Keurig cups

K & J

Keurig cups are convenient, but they also create a ton of plastic waste. These Keurig-compatible plastic cups are an easy way to cut down on the amount of trash you create without cutting down on your caffeine. Additionally, you won't have to keep on buying K Cups, which means you'll be saving money and the environment.

K&J Reusable Filter Cups, $8.95 for a set of 4,; at Amazon

Low-flow shower head


Low-flow water fixtures can cut down your water consumption, which saves you money while also saving one of the Earth's resources. This shower head was designed with a lighter flow in mind, which means you'll be able to cut down on water usage without feeling like you're cutting down on your shower.

Speakman Low Flow Shower Head, $14.58; at Amazon

Bamboo safety razor


Instead of throwing away a disposable razor every time you shave, invest in an eco-friendly, reusable one. This unisex shaver isn't just sustainable, it's also sharp-looking, which means it would make a great gift for the holidays.

Zomchi Safety Razor, $16.99; at Amazon

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