Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires: New Smokey the Bear Ad Campaign

15 Jul

Smokey the Bear made his first appearance in 1994 and the protector of the forest is still around today. The Ad Council and the USDA Forest Service have launched a new Smokey the Bear ad campaign, however the slogan has been tweaked to remind us that “only you can prevent wildfires” and they have added on something quite ridiculous to the tag line as well, but we’ll get to that in a minute.

The new campaign includes a series of PSA’s that are already airing on television, as well as an educational DVD designed for elementary children.

I don’t know if agree with the tag line “Get Your Smokey On”.  Aren’t we trying to put fires out? Wouldn’t something like “Smoke Them Out” be better?  Instead the first thing that comes to mind is they’re telling us to light up a cigarette or a cigar. Hello! this is geared towards children is some cases. And don’t get me started on the bear graphic.

Here is the classic poster ad…

I think they should have just revamped the old poster with a more updated cute bear and use the same slogan. It’s short and sweet and gets the message across in two words. But what do I know?

Here two ominous yet classic Smokey the Bear PSA’s from 1969…

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By 1974 they toned it down a bit and went the ‘save the cute creatures’ route instead…

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See all the new Smokey Bear ads at

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