Random House Children’s Books celebrates the 10th anniversary of the popular Stupid Smelly Bus Tour, scheduled to visit 27 bookstores, libraries, and military bases through June 29, including a stop at Books and Books in Coral Gables at 6 p.m. on June 11.
Launched in 2004 as part of the company’s “June Is Junie B. Month” promotional campaign to support Barbara Park’s bestselling Junie B. Jones book series, the Stupid Smelly Bus Tour continues to bring Park’s lovable character to fans across the country, all of whom love to meet their favorite book character in person.
The first tour was voted “Most Effective Children’s Marketing Campaign” by booksellers in Publishers Weekly’s annual Off the Cuff Awards (Publishers Weekly, 1/10/05). Last year’s tour brought Junie B.’s hilarious antics to life for more than 5,000 fans, and this year’s tour is poised to do the same.
“Yikes! I truly cannot believe that Junie B. and Mr. Woo have ridden that stupid smelly bus from coast-to-coast for 10 years in a row,” Park said. “That is just amazing! My thanks to all for allowing Junie B. to meet so many of her friends and share her ‘treasures’ from home. It has been such a happy ride!”
The eight-week tour features live performances by two actors playing Junie B. Jones and Mr. Woo, who travel from city to city in a bright pink “Stupid Smelly” school bus adorned with colorful graphics, including the series’ signature checkerboard and the faces of Junie B.’s friends in the windows. At each event, Junie B. will open her Big Pink Trunk of Junk and perform a Show and Tell, sharing instantly recognizable items from the series such as her stuffed elephant, “Philip Johnny Bob,” and the floaty ball from the toilet tank, Junie B.’s favorite plumbing supply. The events are recommended for children ages 5 up, and also include an official book stamping and free Junie B. souvenirs for all kids in attendance.
For more information about the Junie B. Jones book series and for complete details regarding the tour’s cities, dates, and event locations, visit the series website at JunieBJones.com.
To encourage an enthusiasm for and love of reading, this summer also will mark the launch of the new Junie B. Kids’ Reading Club. Members will receive a reading log full of activities, Junie B. quotes, and plenty of pages to record their favorite Junie B. moments, as well as a free copy of the first book in the series Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus.
As an interactive component, the JunieBJones.com website will host two new games, as well as book quizzes for kids to show off their Junie B. knowledge. For an added incentive, each quiz entry the child and parent submit will enter them to win a visit from the Stupid Smelly Bus to their school in summer 2014.
With over 55 million copies in print in all formats and translated into more than a dozen languages, the Junie B. Jones series first burst onto the literary scene in 1992, and has been keeping kids (and grownups) laughing — and reading — ever since. Over 20 years and 30 books later, Junie B. Jones has become a staple in classrooms across the country and been featured in USA Today, Time Magazine, and on the Today show.
Park adds, “I’ve never been sure whether Junie B.’s fans love her in spite of her imperfections: or because of them. But either way, she’s gone out into the world and made more friends than I ever dreamed possible.”
This original performance is produced and directed by G. Wayne Hoffman. The Junie B. Jones Stupid Smelly Bus Tour is produced and sponsored by Random House Children’s Books.