LIGONIER (KDKA) — Daniel Tiger debuted 60 years ago on Josie Carey’s “Children’s Corner,” on WQED-TV.
The puppet was manipulated and voiced by Fred Rogers, who came into his own on “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.”
Now, the legacy lives on, in an animated show called “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.”
The “neighborhood” and trolley in Idlewild Park has been updated, according to Idlewild’s Jeff Croushore.
“It features characters that they know and love, including Daniel Tiger and his friends from the new show,” Croushore says.
The Fred Rogers characters have grown up. The new neighborhood includes their “children.” But riders young and old share the songs.
“Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” was designed by the Fred Rogers Company, and Schell Games of Station Square.
“We’re moving from the old neighborhood of make-believe, which was a world of puppets, to the new world, which is about animated characters, which is a new look,” CEO Jesse Schell said. “And we had to figure out how that was going to work. We tried to add a lot of new surprises. This is the world’s only sing-along ride, for example.”
It used to be the parents had to explain the characters to the kids. But now, with the popularity of the young Daniel Tiger, and his young friends, it’s the other way around.
Idlewild Park opens, weekends only, this Friday. It opens full-time June 5.