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Snuffy Smith cartoonist to make local appearances

Staff Report • Jul 8, 2013 at 11:22 AM

Syndicated cartoonist John Rose will make a number of public appearances in the Twin-Cities on Friday, July 12 and Saturday, July 13 as part of a promotional tour for his new book, “The Bodacious Best of Snuffy Smith.”

The book is a collection of King Features’ popular, long-running Barney Google and Snuffy Smith comic strip. In this volume — the first collection of Rose’s work on the strip and the first Snuffy Smith book published in America since 1994 — Rose selects his favorite strips from 2004 to 2013.

“Having this collection published is truly a dream come true,” Rose said. “Comic strip collections have lined the shelves of my bookcases for as long as I can remember and have served as great inspiration and enjoyment to me over the years.“I’ve said for years that having the opportunity to be the cartoonist for this comic strip has been the greatest joy of my professional career and having this book published is an extension of that joy.”

On July 12, Rose will sign copies of his new release from 2 to 4 p.m. at One of a Kind Gallery, 604 State St., in downtown Bristol. He will present a one-time Chalk Talk, a cartooning workshop, at 6 p.m. at Broadmore Senior Living, also in Bristol.

During the Chalk Talk, Rose will discuss his career as a cartoonist, show examples of his work and draw characters from the Barney Google and Snuffy Smith comic strip. A book signing and public reception will follow the workshop.

The following day, Rose will appear at a public presentation and book signing at 10 a.m. at the Bristol Public Library.

Barney Google and Snuffy Smith is one of the longest-running comic strips in history. Created by Billy DeBeck in 1919, it first appeared in the sports section of the Chicago Herald and Examiner as Take Barney Google, F’rinstance. It starred the cigar-smoking, sports-loving, poker-playing, girl-chasing ne’er-do-well Barney Google. By October of that year, the strip was distributed by King Features to newspapers all across the country.

In 1934, Barney Google met Snuffy Smith, a hillbilly who soon eclipsed him in popularity. Not long after this meeting, the strip became known as Barney Google and Snuffy Smith. In 1942, the comic strip was inherited by DeBeck’s long-time assistant, Fred Lasswell, who continued to draw the strip until his death in March 2001. Rose, who inked the strip for Lasswell, has been carrying on the bodacious tradition of being the strip’s cartoonist since 2001.

This tremendously popular feature boasts clients in 21 countries and 11 languages. It has added several phrases to the American vernacular, including “sweet mama,” “horsefeathers,” “heebie-jeebies” and “hotsie-totsie.” It has been the inspiration for a hit song, “Barney Google (With Your Goo-Goo-Googly Eyes)” and is one of a few historical comic strips to be honored on a special set of U.S. postage stamps.

Rose’s appearances in Bristol — co-sponsored by the Bristol Public Library and Broadmore Senior Living — are free and open to the public.

Due to its popularity and limited seating, reservations to Rose’s “Chalk Talks” are recommended, but not required.

For reservations to the “Chalk Talk” or for details on any of Rose’s other appearances, call Tim Buchanan at (423) 764-4622 or email him at info@broadmore-bristol.com.

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