It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’” 

“Love isn’t a state of perfect caring. It is an active noun like struggle. To love someone is to strive to accept that person exactly the way he or she is, right here and now.” 

“Often when you think you’re at the end of something, you’re at the beginning of something else.” 

“Forgiveness is a strange thing. It can sometimes be easier to forgive our enemies than our friends. It can be hardest of all to forgive people we love. Like all of life’s important coping skills, the ability to forgive and the capacity to let go of resentments most likely take root very early in our lives.” 

“There are three ways to ultimate success: The first way is to be kind. The second way is to be kind. The third way is to be kind.” 

“You’ve made this day a special day, by just your being you. There’s no person in the whole world like you; and I like you just the way you are.”

These are just a few of the many amazing quotes are by the one and only Fred Rogers.

Two weeks ago, we decided to take a trip to Pittsburgh during spring break. Not the first place that comes to most people’s mind when you think of spring break, but we wanted to check out the Mister Rogers Exhibit at the Heinz History Center.

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Admittedly, I did not grow up watching Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. Of course I had seen it, but my brother had been a fan when he was younger and I didn’t take to it in the same way. As I got older and learned more about him, watched interviews and read articles, I came to appreciate his message. Now that I’m a mom, it speaks to me even more.

With his 50th anniversary last month, PBS started showing some old episodes. I wasn’t sure how the kids would react to it since it’s older, slower and not all the sparkle that is everywhere on children’s programming now. Once I put it on, both ‘J’s,’ ages 3 and 1IMG_6907.jpg, were hooked. Mister Rogers never needed the sparkle, and it still holds true.

Although the exhibit isn’t big, it doesn’t have to be. As soon as you walk in, you’re transported to the land of make believe. You can see King Friday’s castle, Henrietta’s Treehouse, the trolley and of course a few puppet friends. There are so many little details from Mister Rogers’ shoes to the trolley. They are playing clips from the show and have two booklets you can read through about Mister Rogers’ life and the show.

There weren’t many people there on the Friday that we visited, but you almost felt the need to talk quietly. Everyone was there to take it all in and appreciate the artifacts from the show. His fanbase and the people he has affected spans 50 years.

Pittsburgh is a 6-7 hour drive for us and we took 48 hours out of our spring break to make the trip. As a bonus, the Heinz History Center also has a great kids’ area with building blocks, air tunnels, coloring and more! Of course there are many great exhibits for adults as well. If you can get there to visit, I highly recommend you do. You won’t regret it!

And now Mister Rogers defending PBS to the US Senate Subcommittee of Communications. A clip that shows the power of Mister Rogers perfectly:

 


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