Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Anyone watch the Simpsons this past Sunday? Apparently a few folks over in Holland did (from mlive.com, which doesn't have permalinks):

Tulip Time's spokesman: Homer Simpson
Tuesday, March
22, 2005
By Shandra Martinez, The Grand Rapids Press

HOLLAND -- Homer Simpson tiptoeing through the tulips?

Apparently the bumbling pop culture icon dreams of visiting
Holland's famed festival.


"Wow, I wouldn't mind taking that to the Holland, Michigan, tulip festival," Homer said in Sunday's episode of "The Simpsons" as he admired a tricked-out RV while filling up the tank on his modest rig, bought with wife Marge's savings.

The mere mention of Tulip Time during the show that aired on WXMI (Channel 17) was the talk of the 35,000-population community on Monday.

"Wherever I'm going, people are talking and laughing about it. I'm ready to name a street after Homer," said Holland Mayor Al McGeehan, who admitted he doesn't watch the show.

While there are no plans to use Homer's endorsement to market the weeklong festival this May, Tulip Time officials couldn't be more thrilled with the exposure.

"Anytime you get a reach like that, who knows what impact it will have," said Tamara Bouman, festival president.

Tim Long, who wrote Sunday's episode, says he would be delighted if the show boosted the festival's attendance.

"People need to know there is more to Michigan than Detroit," Long said from his Los Angeles office. "There is Detroit and the tulip festival."

Credit for the line actually goes to Long's boss, Al Jean, one of the show's executive producers, who grew up in the Detroit area.

In addition, Chicago native Dan Castellaneta, the voice of Homer, has been one of the festival's millions of visitors.

"He said he had a lovely time," Long said.

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