2021 - Volume #45, Issue #5, Page #20[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Little Grey Fergie Loved By Kids, Adults
The 2 to 5-year-old children Myklebust had in mind when he brought Fergie to life love the little grey tractor and the toys, games, clothing and other items derived from it. But so do adults who want to pass on good work and life values to children.
“Fergie started because we did not like the children’s programs on Norwegian TV in the late 90’s when our son was a little boy,” says Anne Thovsen, producer for Fergie videos. She and Myklebust, who had careers in graphic design, cartoons and writing, wanted to create a character of their own. “We also wanted to share values of farming and food, and it meshed together.”
After selling their popular T-shirts, the couple produced books and episodes for a Norwegian public TV station. Later they made movies and put short teasers on YouTube. Fergie’s co-stars include farm animals, Farmer George, Daisy the farmhand, Clunky the robot, Gramps and Hubert and Hieronemus the inept, villain scrap dealers.
They sold licensing rights for a company to open the amusement park Fergie Land in 2014 and were invited to Disneyland in 2015 to accept a Themed Entertainment Association Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement.
“It’s edutainment,” Myklebust says. “You have fun but learn without knowing you are learning.”
There are lessons about being proud of who you are, that everyone has a role, that you don’t throw away old friends - like an old tractor.
The Ferguson tractor is treasured in Norway and much of Europe and some older adults who collect and restore them appreciate Fergie for giving them and their grandchildren a common interest. That includes fans in North America, who pay more for shipping than the clothing, toys and items they order from the couple in Norway.
“Our goal is to make more shows, books and toys for all children and families worldwide that build on good values and entertainment,” Thovsen says.
The couple is negotiating with a distribution company to make their products less expensive and more available in North America in the near future. They also plan to produce a whole season of episodes for television.
You can see for yourself at YouTube. Just search: Little Grey Fergie.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Anne Thovsen, Aarfuglveien 2, 3123 Tonsberg, Norway (ph 011 47 41 41 16 10; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.littlegreyfergie.com).
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