Washington, DC: Animatronic Smokey Bear
USDA Forest Service information Center features a small museum and includes a talking, moving version of their fire-preventing mascot.
- 1400 Independence Ave. SW, Washington, DC
- US Forest Service, USDA, Independence Ave SW, and 14th St. SW
- M-F 8:30 am - 4:15 pm. (Call to verify)
Animatronic Smokey Bear
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The USDA Forest Service information Center is essentially a very small, but well-done one-room museum, made to look like a western lodge. Video screens in the walls tell the story of the Forest Service. he main attraction, though, is the animatronic Smokey Bear. He greets you upon entering with the sage words: "Only you can prevent forest fires," and then goes back to "sleep" at his desk (an odd way to depict federal employees for a federal agency to project). They also give away free fridge magnets and picture postcards of Smokey's office.
The animatronic goofiness is welcome after a visit next door to the National Holocaust Museum.
[William Zaza, 01/17/2012]
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