Anderson Press has announced plans for Elmer the Elephant's 30th anniversary, celebrating the patchwork pachyderm's tenure with a programme of exclusive, bespoke books and merchandise, plus the biggest ever marketing and PR drive from the books’ publisher.
Elmer's paper and hardback books remain a staple of UK youngsters early reading material, with the brand seeing significant throughout 2017 and 2018. Written and illustrated by celebrated children’s author and artist David McKee, the Elmer books have been translated into more than 50 languages and now new books, toys and clothing add to the world of Elmer the Patchwork Elephant.
Special anniversary editions of books, clothing and consumer products throughout the anniversary year alongside a brand new Elmer book Elmer’s Birthday, written and illustrated by David McKee.
The biggest ever Elmer Day on May 25th 2019, with schools, nurseries, bookshops and libraries hosting their own birthday parties for Elmer. Andersen Press will provide an exclusive anniversary event pack for anyone who signs up.
2018’s Elmer Day continues to grow, with over 2400 sign-ups for event packs. More bookshops than ever before are taking part, including over 50 Waterstones stores.
Elmer and Friends: The Colourful World of David McKee – the first ever major retrospective of David’s beautiful original art, displayed for children in an immersive and interactive way. Curated and hosted at Seven Stories, The National Centre for Children’s Books in 2019, before a UK tour.
Elsewhere, Elmer’s Big Art Parades will hit the road, with interactive, family art trails in association with Wild in Art, featuring Elmer statues decorated by artists from around the country. Each trail in Tyne and Wear, Suffolk and Plymouth are in aid of a local hospice charity, and finishes with each statue auctioned off to raise funds.
In addition to this plethora of activity, Anderson has confirmed that the brand's creator David McKee will be committed to increased media opportunities and event appearances throughout the anniversary celebrations.
Elmer’s licensing programme has gone from strength-to-strength since the launch of apparel in 2017. In 2018, Metrostar has signed Lifemarque for backpacks and harnesses, further signings will be announced soon.
Penguin Ventures is currently in discussion with several toy and game partners to ensure that there will be an increased offering for Elmer in the run-up to the anniversary year. They are also working with existing licensees to expand their ranges and looking at new opportunities for the brand overall.
Products across all lines will be launched later this year and throughout 2019.