Loss for kids’ lit
By Stephanie E. Ponder
Co-creator of Berenstain Bears dies
Stan Berenstain, co-creator of the
Berenstain Bears series, died November 26 of
complications from cancer. He was 82.
Berenstain began writing the bestselling series
in 1962 with his wife, Jan. Their first title
about Mama, Papa, Brother and Sister Bear
was The Big Honey Hunt.
wrote more than 250 books, selling more than
260 million copies. The Berenstain Bears family,
which added Baby in later years, also appeared
on TV, in videos and stage productions and as
toys. They even had their own cereal.
While some readers and editors complained about the family’s outdated clothing
and language and Papa’s milquetoast personality, the series was wildly successful.
In interviews, Berenstain said he was
inspired to write children’s books after reading an article about a Random House editor,
Theodore Geisel (better known as Dr. Seuss),
who was launching a line of books for young
Over the course of 43 years the Berenstains
Berenstain’s books, geared for readers
between the ages of 4 and 8, covered everyday
topics such as doing homework and cleaning
one’s room, but also addressed more heavy-hitting topics such as the environment and
Costco has one signed copy of each
of the following books to give away:
• Reversible Errors, by Scott Turow
Brain Quest products are known for boost-ing brain power. For two lucky Costco families,
they’ve boosted college savings as well.
• Second Glance, by Jodi Picoult
• Ask Me Again Tomorrow,
by Olympia Dukakis
• My Life So Far, by Jane Fonda
• A Ship Made of Paper,
by Scott Spencer
Last spring Brain Quest sponsored the
Win Your College Tuition Sweepstakes, for
entrants between the ages of 2 and 13. Of the
60,000 entries, two of the five runners-up are
sons of Costco members and now have
$10,000 to put toward a college education.
• Ties That Bind, by Phillip Margolin
• The Confessor, by Daniel Silva
Brain Quest card decks feature questions
covering math, science, history and English,
and are designed for age groups from 2 to 13
To enter, print the name of the
book you’d like to win, your name,
membership number, address and
daytime phone number on a postcard or letter and send it to: The
Costco Connection, P.O. Box 34088,
Seattle, WA 98124-1088, or fax it to
Nathan Cashmore of Grayslake, Illinois,
is 3 years old and not interested in thinking
about college, much less elementary school.
He does, however, love being outside, playing
sports and answering Brain Quest questions
with his older brother.
No purchase is necessary.
Entries must be received or postmarked by midnight, February 1,
2006. Void where prohibited.
Employees of Costco and their families are not eligible. Winners will be
notified by mail. One entry per
His mom, Kristin, says the Brain Quest
question-and-answer cards are great to have
in the car because the questions are fun and
the cards are portable. She adds that the family is pretty excited. Her husband is a financial
planner, so socking away money for their
kids’ education is something they’ve always
Send your feedback
on this month’s buyer’s pick to:
Another parent who was busy thinking
about her children’s education is Robyn
Elkins of Chugiak, Alaska. She was thrilled to
learn that her 2-year-old son, Carson, was one
of the $10,000-scholarship winners. She says
she’d just been talking with her mother about
her two kids’ college savings. The winnings
EXCLUSIVE TO THE ONLINE EDITION
Brain Quest received more than 60,000
entries for its Win Your College Tuition
Sweepstakes. Two of the $10,000 scholarship winners are from Costco families.
have boosted Carson’s savings to the level of
his older brother’s.
Although what Carson will study and
where is anybody’s guess, Robyn says, “Carson
has shown a curiosity about how things work.
He watches us and then imitates the action.
He really likes to climb and move furniture
around to get at things that are out of his
reach. He’s very curious about what buttons
do, like turning a TV or computer on.”
Both mothers expressed an interest in
their sons attending the schools they
attended—or at least schools near family. But
those decisions are still more than a decade
away. Until then, Nathan and Carson can
busy themselves with sports and buttons, and
maybe a few more rounds of Brain Quest
W.E.B. Griffin signs The Hostage on
January 14, at noon, at the Arlington,
Virginia, Costco, at 1200 S. Fern St.
Linda Fairstein signs Death Dance on
January 21, at noon, at the Westbury,
New York, Costco, at 1250 Old Country
Rocco DiSpirito signs Rocco’s 5
Minute Flavor on January 21, at noon,
at the Queens, New York, Costco, at
32-50 Vernon Blvd.
(Click here for maps and
directions to Costco locations.)