Letters to Boomer
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Boomer Bear/Mascot

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Boomer doing butterfly stroke in pool wearing swimming gogglesDear Boomer,

Do you know any good books for when we’re stuck at home? I really like Harry Potter, John Green and Ransom Riggs. I miss meetings at Bookmans! 

Stay safe! A.H.

Dear A.H.,

I’m really glad you’ve been reading so muchyou have great taste, too. John Green hit it big with his award- winning first book, “Looking for Alaska.” And his fourth book, “The Fault in Our Stars” took him to the top of the New York Times Best 

Sellers list in 2012. Ransom Riggs wrote the hit book, “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children,” which was also made into a movie.

A former Young Reporter of mine loves the Maximum Ride series by James Patterson. To start from the beginning, his first book is “The Angel Experiment.” These young adult fantasy novels center around Max Ride and her family, referred to as “the Flock”human hybrids born with wings. If you find a good book, send me your book review. The good news is that Bookmans is open again. We’ll let you and your parents know when our Young Reporter Nights will start.

Readers are winners! Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I am homeschooled, so I am enjoying school very much. We are operating pretty well. But I also miss some things that we cannot do because of this COVID-19. I think my favorite one of them (I’ve been missing) is we can’t go anywhere like museums or aquariums. I know we can do virtual visits, but that isn’t as much fun.

Yours truly, K.D.

Good news, K.D.

One by one, these places are beginning to reopen!

With the coronavirus still infecting people here in Arizona, the challenge is how to best keep visitors and employees from passing along the virus. The Arizona- Sonora Desert Museum and the Tucson Museum of Art should be open now. And fun places where you can get moving like Golf N’ Stuff and Skate Country are openjust keep your hands clean and remember to social distance!

Enjoy, Boomer Bear

Hi Boomer!

The kind of technology that I would like to write about are computers and rockets.

Your friend, N.S.

Dear N.S.,

Be sure to check out my In the Spotlight story about astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley becoming the first humans to fly a SpaceX Crew Dragon spaceship.

They made it safely to the International Space Station. This is the first time in almost nine years that an American-built rocket has carried people into space.

Technology rocks, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

What I like best about Bear Essential News are the hidden pictures on the front cover because it’s fun!

—T.M.

Dear T.M.,

That’s my favorite part, too!

Your friend, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

During this COVID-19 pandemic, I find great comfort in turning to nature. I used to stay inside all the time, but more and more I find myself becoming closer to nature! I long to listen to the birds chirp their sweet songs. I ache to lay on the cool, wet grass and stare up into the beautiful sky. Nature has become part of me…and I’m glad! 

Your truly, L.D.

Dear L.D.,

Am I ever impressed that you discovered such a positive side to this difficult situation. And with so many staying home more, nature is bouncing back on many levels. You should really enjoy my News Highlights story about some special bald eagles here, and the main feature highlights some amazing desert critters.

Have fun & stay hydrated!

Boomer Bear

Boomer riding a bicycle with helmet.Dear Boomer,

Biking is so fun! You can have adventures just about everywhere!

Do you agree?

Your friend, I.M.

I agree wholeheartedly!

You can call me Boomer the Biking Bear. All these bike paths make it a lot safer to get around, and I ALWAYS wear my helmet. I love the adventure of pedaling around. 

Enjoy! Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer Bear,

Since we’ve been in quarantine, I miss that I can’t see my friends. I miss that I can’t play football or tag with them at recess. I miss that I can’t chat or talk with them in person, but now I talk and chat with them online. School is so different than it used to be. Now I’m always on the computer doing work. It’s strange that I’m not around so many kids.

Sincerely, L.W.

Dear Boomer,

We have been out of school now for a month and a half, and I miss my friends the most. It was always fun to hang out and mess around, but now because of the coronavirus, I never see them anymore. At recess we used to toss the football around or play infection tag. All I really want to do is go back to school and see my friends. I’ve been reading Harry Potter during this stay at home order, and it’s slowly getting better. I’m now in the middle of book 5, “The Order of the Phoenix.” It’s so different doing school online. I miss moving from class to class.

Yours truly, H.W.

What great letters, L.W. & H.W.!

Like most school kids, I really miss my friends, too. We went on spring break and haven’t been back to school since then. I’ve got friends who are used to doing online learning. It is really different from actually going to school. I am much sharper on what I can do on a computer now. And some of the virtual zoo tours and stuff are fun. Certainly, a lot of kids (and adults) are having a hard time adjusting to being at home so much and miss being with friends and others they care about. Be nice, be understanding and try to do thoughtful things when you can! 

Hope to see you soon, Boomer

 

Boomer flying a drone with birthday cakeDear Boomer,

What I love about Bear Essential News is that it really takes reporting seriously. 

Yours truly, M.H.

Thanks for compliment, M.H.!

The news business isn’t an easy one. And for the last couple years, we’ve been emphasizing the importance of being accurate to our awesome bunch of Young Reporters! 

Glad you care, 

Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer Bear,

I want to attend drone camp to improve my piloting skills.

Your friend, A.H.

The sky’s the limit, A.H.!

The versatility and hi-tech precision of drones amaze me. Let me know if you find a drone camp around here. Check out my Summer Camp Guide—one of my listings up in Scottsdale has campers building their own drone to take home.

You can fly, Boomer Bear 

Dear Boomer,

We could live in a more friendly way by fostering more pets.

Your friend, Y.H.

That shows great heart, Y.H.!

I’m all for taking care of our four-footed, furry friends. I also think that making sure that your pet is spayed or neutered is a really good idea for preventing too many unwanted pets in this world. 

Take care, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I want to attend a summer camp that includes art, sports, and nature, too. But I’m not sure what it’s called.

Your friend, A.R.

Hey, A.R.!

There are several traditional summer camps that offer these fun and fabulous activities and more. My Camp Guide begins on page 17 if you are looking for a summer camp that fits your needs.

Have a great time,

Boomer Bear

Boomer Bear,

I think we could live in a more environmentally friendly way by picking up trash off the streets.

Your friend, A.B.

Good thinking, A.B.!

Cleaning up and beautifying our neighborhoods and schoolyards help. Maybe work with your teacher or parent to organize a cleaning crewjust be safe and stay out of the streets! April 22 will be the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.

All my best, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I like the activities the most in your newspaper because they are fun!

 —M.B.

Boomer outdoors taking snapshots at lizardI love the activities, too, M.B.!

The word games, drawing contests and the front cover seek-and-find make this newspaper different than the rest.

Enjoy, Boomer Bear

Boomer Bear,

I’d like to know where you were born! 

Your friend, S.B.

Dear S.B.,

Now that’s an easy one for me to answer. I was born a little over 10 years ago up in the frigid northern reaches of Canada. Then my parents decided to move to Arizona when I was just a young polar bear cub. Years later, I just gotta say that I’m the coolest polar bear in the desert, and that coolness is a state of mind.

Your best buddy,

Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I am interested in how the Earth was made.

Yours truly, A.B.

Boomer Bear,

When it comes to science, I’m interested in geology and plate tectonics.

—A.V.

Interesting, A.B. & A.V.!

 Earth sciences are just a fascinating field. Geology and plate tectonics make learning science so much fun. And with the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show happening this month (Feb. 13–16 at the Tucson Convention Center), I’ll be adding some great minerals to my rock collection.

This issue of Bear Essential News has some great science sections, too!

Check out the pull-out from the ASU Sustainability Solutions Service, “Your Field Guide to Community Action.” This 12–page guide will help you learn to appreciate your community and give you some ideas on making your community stronger and more resilient!

And a few pages after that, there are four pages from the Arizona SciTech Festival, filled with science fun and dozens of Signature Events happening throughout the state.

Rock on! Boomer Bear



Dear Boomer,

I could live in a more environmentally friendly way by being driven around less, which would use less gas.

Your friend, A.V.

What a great plan, A.V.!

Things like walking or riding your bike to more places really cut down on the pollutants your family car puts out. You can also carpool with friends or your family can catch the bus or light rail to help the planet, too! Be sure to do the pull-out Field Guide for more ideas. 

Thank you,  Boomer BearBoomer Writing

Dear Boomer,

 I would most like to interview Stephan Pastis because he is my favorite author and illustrator.

Your Young Reporter, E.A.

Good choice, E.A.!

 Stephan Pastis, with his Timmy Failure books, would be a very funny person to interview. I want to read “Timmy Failure: Sanitized for Your Protection.”

Keep reading! Boomer Bear

Hey, Boomer!

I want to wish everyone Happy New Year! 

Yours truly, A.B.

How thoughtful, A.B.!

Now that we’re back in school, did you make any New Year’s resolutions when it comes to your grades, classmates or anything? 2020 seems like a good time to  set a few goals for yourself! One of my resolutions is to stress less and to write more. And this “Letters to Boomer” column gives me a perfect reason to write.

Happy New Year, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

This year, I want to write more stories about science.

Your friend, Z.G.

Boomer Bear,

I’d like to write about the Science Fair this year!

—M.B.

Sounds like a plan, Z.G. & M.B.!

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) stuff fascinates me. And since you dig it too, this issue and the next one of Bear Essential News will really put a smile on your face! In the middle of this newspaper is a funtastic pullout about the Arizona SciTech Festival. 

This celebration of STEM has hundreds of events statewide and kicks off this month with the last events happening in May. The program offers some great activities, including a fun password generator, some fascinating stories and a list of some of the bright events certain to spark your interest!  And next month, Bear brings you a fabulously fun booklet on living more sustainably

STEM Rocks! Boomer Bear 

Dear Boomer,

For the New Year, I want to express who I really am and be myself.

Your friend, C.K.

We all need to do that, C.K.!

Expressing yourselfeither through speaking with others, your written words, through art, etc.is important. And sometimes having an opportunity to say who you are can make a huge difference. From what I know of you, I think you’re AMAZING!

Have a great 2020, Boomer Bear

Hi, Boomer!

The kinds of stories I would like to write about this year are anything about cars.

Your Young Reporter, L.B.

Happy New Year, L.B.!

There’s so much going on about how we get from here to there. And with Tesla showing off its new all-electric Cybertruck, getting ready to launch its Semi for hauling goods, and upgrading its Roadster, the electric car company is now the most valuable car manufacturer.

Sounds like a story, Boomer Bear

Boomer Forming Snow AngelBoomer Bear,

My favorite family tradition for the holidays is making tamales with my dad’s family! 

Your friend, A.H.

Dear A.H.,

YUM! What a great family tradition this time of year.

Making a tasty tamal isn’t easy, either. My favorite are green corn tamales with some gooey cheese and a sliver of green chile running down the middle.

When I first arrived in Arizona, I made the mistake of tucking the corn husk into the front of my shirt, thinking it was supposed to be some sort of built-in napkin.

I’ll take a dozen, please!

Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I hope you have a Merry Christmas! You’re a wonderful friend to me, and working for Bear Essential News (as a Young Reporter) is so much fun. I think of you every time I read Bear Essential News. I have lots of fun reading your newspaper every month. I hope all your Christmas wishes come true and are full of many special and unforgettable memories.

Merry Christmas, B.E.

And to you, too, B.E.!

The amazing card you made this year is on the front desk of our office so everyone can enjoy your fireplace art with the 3D stockings hanging over it. 

Wishing you a Beary one, Boomer

Dear Boomer,

I’m helping other people this holiday season by donating to our school’s canned food drive.

 —C.A.

Boomer,

I would like to help others this

holiday season by donating clothes.

Yours truly, K.E.

Wow, C.A. and K.E.!

Those are simple but very thoughtful ways to help people this season. I love collecting for my school’s canned food drive here at Bear Canyon Elementary. And all sizes of clothing from kid through adult sizes can brighten a family’s holiday. (Remember, warmer clothes are needed, too.)

Make things bright, 

Boomer Bear

Hello, Boomer Bear!

I would like to help other kids by sharing my toys this season.

Yours truly, A.B.

Dear Boomer,

I would like to help others by going to or donating to a children’s hospital or writing a story (about what they do there).

Your Reporter, K.S.

Happy Holidays, A.B. & K.S.!

Those are some very generous and thoughtful ways of helping to make things brighter for other kids (and for yourselves, too).

The Marines’ annual Toys for Tots Drive is short on gifts right now, and there’s also KVOA’s Season 4 Hope drive, where you can donate food, new toys and clothes. 

Thank you! Boomer Bear

​​​​​

Dear Boomer,

My favorite book is “Young Scrooge (A Very Scary Christmas Story). It’s by my favorite author, R.L. Stine! 

Yours truly, A.H.

Dear A.H.,

I haven’t read that book, but the plot sounds great with young Rick Scroogeman hating just about everything that has to do with Christmas. But then the nightmares start.   One of our Young Reporters got an exclusive interview with R.L. Stine a couple of years ago when he was here for the Tucson Festival of Books! Rori did great and interviewed the famous author and his wife.

Keep on reading,

Boomer Bear

Boomer Bear,

Halloween isn’t my favorite holiday because Christmas is better.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas,

A.B.

That’s a tough call, A.B.!

I had such a great time at Halloween trick-or-treating as Smokey Bear! I’d hold out my shovel to get all sorts of candy! But when it comes to being with family, cool temperatures and things that warm your heart, I do love Christmastime.

Thanksgiving rocks for food and great leftovers, though! 

Have a very beary one, Boomer

Dear Boomer,

Are you a mascot in real life?

Just wondering, P.H.

What a funny question, P.H.!

I like to think of myself as more than a mascot. I write, have all sorts of friends, go to Bear Canyon Elementary and help run the show here at Bear Essential News. I especially love reading books and hope to get a few great reads under the Christmas tree next month!

More than a mascot, 

Boomer Bear

Hey, Boomer!

I would like to go to the Winter Street Fair on Fourth Avenue for the holidays.

Your friend, S.M.

Dear S.M.,

There are so many booths filled with so many one-of-a-kinds, handmade creations at the Winter Street Fair—it makes my head spin! I enjoy seeing the variety of things for sale even though I usually can buy just one or two gifts. 

Hope you get to go,

Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

How did Bear Essential News start?

Your friend, T.M.

Great question, T.M.!

Bear Essential first rolled off the press here in Tucson 40 years ago. It was started by a teacher and her husband, a graphic designer.

Enjoy! Boomer Bear

Boomer Halloween Head

Dear Boomer,

Halloween is my favorite holiday because you get to be whatever you want! 

Yours truly, P.H.

Dear P.H.,

Halloween is always such a thrill for me! I’ve been spooktacular characters, and I’ve been silly ones. I liked this one where I wore a giant pumpkin head while I carried my candy bucket head around. This year, my friends and I are going trick-or-treatingI can’t wait to see what they wear!

Halloween Rocks,

Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I want to be a Kit Kat this Halloween. I plan on playing with my cats, too.  Happy Halloween, A.H.

Happy Halloween to you, too, A.H.!

Those little Kit Kat bars are one of my favorite treats to get. That costume isn’t going to be easy to make, so I’d start on it really soon! They probably sell some foam ones at the store. I still haven’t figured what I should go as this Halloween. I’m leaning toward something sort of scary though! 

BOO! Boomer Bear

Hi, Boomer.

For Halloween, I want to be a creepy/haunted doll—maybe one of those scary antique dolls!

I can’t wait, C.A.

Sounds chilling, C.A.!

Some people like to be scared; some people like to be scary. And a lot of kids like to be both this time of year. For some reason, scary clowns and unblinking old dolls freak me out. 

Have a ton of fun! 

Boomer Bear

Hi, Boomer.

My favorite Halloween treat is candy corn. My mom buys it every Halloween!

Your friend, A.M.

Such a sweet holiday tradition!

Did you know that there are many people—my guess is they are mostly adults—who don’t like candy corn? That means more candy corn for you, A.M.!

Be Safe Out There, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

Halloween isn’t my favorite holiday because I’m not a huge fan of candy.

Yours truly, L.B.

Hey, L.B.!

Too much of a good thing isn’t good for anybody. I love dressing up in costume though.

Your buddy, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

Why are you in (Arizona), and why are you here in the heat? 

Your friend, T.M.

Dear T.M.,

As a special treat (and to escape the heat) my folks took me up to the White Mountains this past weekend! It has been rather warm here in the Valley, and even I was getting tired of being in the swimming pool so much. The mountains are cool in so many ways. We got to fish, and I caught three trout. While we fished, an osprey dove into the water and came out with a fish! I even saw a herd of elk up there. They’re HUGE!

Your buddy, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I want to be a Kit Kat this Halloween. I plan on playing with my cats, too.

Happy Halloween, A.H.

Happy Halloween to you, too, A.H.!

Those little Kit Kat bars are one of my favorite treats to get. That costume isn’t going to be easy to make, so I’d start on it really soon! They probably sell some foam ones at the store. I still haven’t figured what I should go as this Halloween. I’m leaning toward something sort of scary though! 

BOO! Boomer Bear

Hi, Boomer.

For Halloween, I want to be a creepy/haunted doll—maybe one of those scary antique dolls!

I can’t wait, C.A.

Sounds chilling, C.A.!

Some people like to be scared; some people like to be scary. And a lot of kids like to be both this time of year. For some reason, scary clowns and unblinking old dolls freak me out. 

Have a ton of fun! 

Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer Bear,

I hope you had a happy birthday! How are you, buddy? I really enjoy being a reporter and writing stories for your newspaper. Do you enjoy being on the front cover (all the time)? You’re a wonderful friend and mascot. I hope all your wishes came true on your special day!

Happy Birthday, B.E.

Thanks a bunch, B.E.!

September was my birthday month AND the month that Bear Essential News got started. Can you guess how old the newspaper is? That’s right, it just turned 40now that’s something to celebrate!

A lot was going on back in 1979 when this newspaper for young people, classrooms, and families first rolled off the press here in Arizona. And kids in grades 3 thru 8 who’d like to write for me and my newspaper can go to BearEssentialNews.com and print out the Sign-up Form under the Young Reporters or Teachers tabs. When you mail in your completed form, signed by your parent on the bottom, I’ll send you your official Young Reporters Kit, which has instructions and all the tools you need to get started. 

Write for me! Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I’m not happy to be back in school because I (really) dislike my teacher.

Sincerely, M.P.

I’m so sorry, M.P.,

What a tough predicament! You might want to talk things over with your parent and maybe the two of you can meet with the school counselor or principal to come up with a plan, whether it’s to stick with this teacher or maybe to transfer to a different class.

Best of luck, Boomer Bear 

Hi, Boomer.

My favorite Halloween treat is candy corn. My mom buys it every Halloween!

Your friend, A.M.

Dear Boomer,

I feel a bit bored during summer, and I do well in school. Usually, it’s just a relief to have something to study, to do.

Yours truly, K.L.

Now that’s a sweet holiday tradition!

Did you know that there are many peoplemy guess is they are mostly adultswho don’t like candy corn?

I don’t know what’s wrong with them!

Have a happy and safe Halloween, A.M.

Boomer Bear

Hi, Boomer!

The best part about going back to school is history class because I have a passion for it and strive in that class.

Your friend, S.M.

Great attitude, S.M.!

School isn’t just about learning this and that, being with friends and doing your homework. It’s also to expose you to a variety of things so that you can find your passion! Keep up the great work!

Your best buddy, Boomer Bear 

___________________________________________________

Breaking opening a piñataDear Boomer,

Why are you in Tucson, and why are you here in the heat of the summer? 

Your friend, T.M.

Dear T.M.,

As a special treat (and to escape the heat) my folks took me up to the White Mountains this past weekend! It has been broiling here in the Old Pueblo, and even I was getting tired of being in the swimming pool so much. The mountains are cool in so many ways. We got to fish, and I caught three trout. While we fished, an osprey dove into the water and came out with a fish! I even saw a herd of elk up there. They’re HUGE!

Your buddy, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

Yes, I’m happy to be back in school. I am excited to see my science teacher.  

Yours truly, A.H.

Dear Boomer,

I am excited to be back in school because I get to see all my friends again!

—A.V.

That’s outstanding, A.H. & A.V.!

 I’m pretty happy to be starting fifth grade and to be back with some of my buddies again. We’re reviewing a lot of the stuff we learned last year, so I’m looking forward to the more challenging and interesting stuff. As you know, I’m into reading and writing, but science really fascinates me. 

Best of luck, Boomer Bear

Super Boomer going Back To School

Dear Boomer Bear,

I hope you have a happy birthday! How are you, buddy? I really enjoy being a reporter and writing stories for your newspaper. Do you enjoy being on the front cover (all the time)? You’re a wonderful friend and mascot. I hope all your wishes come true on your special day!

Happy Birthday, B.E.

Thanks a bunch, B.E.!

September is my birthday month AND the month that Bear Essential News got started. Can you guess how old the newspaper is? That’s right, it just turned 40—now that’s something to celebrate! A lot was going on back in 1979 when this newspaper for young people, classrooms, and families first rolled off the press here in  Tucson. Read all about it on pages 14 & 15, plus there are several tidbits of trivia for you! And if you want to start reporting for this fun-filled, 40-year-old newspaper (and go on TV with KVOA-4, too) the free Young Reporters Workshop is Saturday, Oct. 26 at the TV station. A parent or teacher needs to call to reserve your space. Teachers can bring up to 20 students. Details are on the right sidebar of the feature (p. 15). 

See ya there, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I’m not happy to be back in school because I (really) dislike my teacher.

Sincerely, M.P.

I’m so sorry, M.P.,

What a tough predicament! You might want to talk things over with your parent and maybe the two of you can meet with the school counselor or principal to come up with a plan, whether it’s to stick with this teacher or to go to a different class.

Hang in there, Boomer Bear 

Dear Boomer,

My favorite book series is Dork Diaries, and Rachel Renée Russell is my favorite author!

Yours truly, S.S.

Dear Boomer,

Dork Diaries are my favorite books.

Your friend, D.K.

Hi Boomer,

My favorite book is “Gamer Army,” and my favorite author is Lincoln

Pierce. 

— L.B. 

Dear S.S., D.K. & L.B.,

You’ve got a great taste in books and authors! Both the Dork Diaries by Russell and the Big Nate series by Lincoln Pierce is way too funny.

With school getting going, please ask your teacher to enroll in this year’s Book It! reading program.  It’s Pizza Hut’s free, rewards-based literacy program, which runs from Oct. 1 through March 31.

This issue shines a light on being kind, and Book It! has four book recommendations about kindness and free activities to go along with them: “Have You Filled a Bucket Today?,”“Judy Moody & the Bucket List,” “Lend a Hand—Poems About Giving” and “Ordinary Mary’s Extraordinary Deed.” Go to www.bookitprogram.com/articles/read-do/kindness for the activities.

Readers are Winners, Boomer

Dear Boomer,

I think it’s important to be kind and respect others because we are all equal and deserve to be treated with love.  

Your friend, A.L.

Dear Boomer,

It’s important to respect others because everyone is the same, and it’s nice to be kind.

Yours truly, A.C.

Dear A.L. & A.C.,

Kindness can make a HUGE difference—especially at school. Having empathy for other students and trying to better understand kids (including those who may be bullies or giving you grief) will help you grow, too! Check out my main feature on kindness. Learn about the Kind Campus program of Ben’s Bells and check out “25 Ways to Be Kind!”

Peace, Boomer Bear

Boomer Bear,

For a field trip, I would like to go to some sort of concert.

Sincerely, T.L.

Dear Boomer,

I want to visit a farm for a field trip because not only do you get to spend time with animals, but it gets you used to the heat! 

Yours truly, E.A.

Terrific ideas, T.L. & E.A.!

I really enjoy concerts—they make me want to dance! I like everything from hip-hop to classical music. One of my favorite field trips was to a dairy farm. Loved seeing all their black-and-white cows. Check out my 2019–2020 Field Trips, Family Destinations and Teachers Resource Guide in this issue! You’ll get some fabulous field trip ideas for unforgettable fun.

Enjoy, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

This school year, I would like to get straight A’s and start a shool newspaper.

Your Young Reporter, A.H.

Sounds like a plan, A.H.,

I’m sure you’ll figure out how to pull great grades this year. If you need help starting a school newspaper, I’m your bear!

Your buddy, Boomer 

Dear Boomer Bear,

Boomer on the MoonNASA should send astronauts to Mars because they should do further research into Mars having life.

Yours truly, L.B.

Dear L.B.,

Wouldn’t that be exciting—after all these robotic missions with rovers and orbiting satellites, to actually have astronauts looking for evidence of life on Mars? The UofA and ASU have played important roles in exploring Mars and looking for signs of water. That’s where scientists think life could be found!

Let’s explore! Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

Thank you for choosing our comics to win. We used our gift card to buy Ninja Turtles named Mikey and Ralph. We love the Ninja Turtles. We like reading your newspaper, too!

Love, J & M

Congratulations, J & M!

Your entry in my Caption and Coloring Comics Contest inspired me. Thank you for enjoying Bear Essential News and putting so much thought and great coloring effort into your entry.

Readers are winners, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

I think NASA should send astronauts to Pluto next. Then we could see the size of it.

Sincerely, A.M.

Hi, A.M.

The dwarf planet Pluto is fascinating with its blue skies and spinning moons. But it’s 2.7–4.7 billion miles away from us, so getting astronauts there and back safely would be a challenge. It would be amazing to explore Pluto! 

Your buddy, Boomer Bear

Hi, Boomer.

It’s important that we continue to explore space to try to find more planets like Earth.

Your friend, G.L.

Dear Boomer.

I do think it is important to continue exploring space because otherwise, we will never know what’s out there.

Thanks, J.H.

Boomer Bear,

Yes, it’s important for us to continue to explore space! The more we know, the more it may help us.

Yours truly, S.S.

Great thoughts, G.L., J.H. & S.S.!

The costs were high to get us to the moon, but the scientific discoveries and inventions that came of it are amazing. To celebrate the 50th of our first step on another celestial body, check out my feature “To the Moon!” on pages 10–12.

Goin’ boldly, Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer,

The best part of my summer so far has been getting my advanced child care diploma!

Sinerely, A.H.

Way to go, A.H.!

Such an impressive effort.

Good luck, Boomer Bear

Boomer with Inner tubeDear Boomer,

This summer, I plan on going to the pool and to the park!

Your friend, A.W.

Hey Boomer,

My plans are having fun, swimming and writing stories.

Yours truly, K.E.

Dear A.W. & K.E.,

When it’s scorchingly hot here in the desert, there’s nothing better than jumping into the pool! Just remember to always have adult supervision when you’re in or near the water. Being a polar bear, you might say that I was born to swim. And I love being in the pool or at the park with my buddies. Can’t wait to read some of the stories that you write this summer, K.E.!

Splish, splash, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

One of my favorite places is the Children’s Museum Tucson! It’s great because the games are cool and really fun.

Sincerely, L.R.

Good call, L.R.!

Museums are a great way to beat the summer heat. To celebrate them, I’m featuring some super cool ones in this newspaper (check out pages 10 thru 12), including the Children’s Museum. On page 13, you and your friends can do our coloring contest for a chance to win passes to your favorite museum!

Readers are winners, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

I am going to the YMCA for nine weeks, and I’m going camping this summer break.

Yours truly, P.H.

How exciting, P.H.!

The YMCA has great summer programs. And if you want to get moving, whether it’s on the basketball court or in the Y pool, you have found the right place. For families still looking for summer camps, go online to BearEssentialNews.com  to the Guides tab, where you’ll find dozens of Tucson and Phoenix  Summer Camps. When it comes to camping, I love going up to the mountains or setting up near a lake.

Have a ton of fun! Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

Do you play an instrument?

Just wondering, A.B.

Dear A.B.,

I LOVE music! I tried playing the piano, but my paws were sort of big and my claws kept getting stuck between the keys. Evidently, violins are kind of delicate, so having a polar bear playing one was a bad idea. So I’m sticking to my saxophone and will be playing it quite a bit this summer.

Your buddy, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

Have you ever created a story yourself?

Sincerely, S.C.

Good question, S.C.!

I love to write and have written a few short stories, including some silly ones. I also like to write poetry and a joke or two—you should try it!

Yours truly, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

This summer, we are going to visit my aunt and her newborn baby down in Mexico.

Young Reporter L.R.

Now that’s worth a trip, L.R.! 

Congratulations on your new cousin! Is it a boy or a girl? And since you’re going to Mexico, you might as well do a story or two on your adventures. How is it different from where you live? Do the kids play different games there? What are the stores like? And with all the controversy lately, what do people have to say about President Trump?

Have a great trip, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

I think it is cool to keep sending humans into space, but it is not too, too safe.

Your friend, K.E.

Dear K.E., 

July 20 is the 50th anniversary of American astronauts being the first to step foot on the moon! Be sure to read about this amazing feat and where our space program is headed to next in the July issue of my newspaper. Bear will also have some fun and challenging space-related activities to test your smarts and creativity.

Lifting off! Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

What is your favorite color?

—P.H.

Dear P.H.,

I’m kind of fond of blue!

See ya, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

One of my family’s favorite museums is the (Arizona-Sonora) Desert Museum. It is so fun!

Yours truly, S.B.

Dear S.B.,

The ASDM is an Arizona gem and consistently ranks as one of the top zoos in the nation! I love going there and learning about what makes our Sonoran Desert (from the desert floor to its sky islands) so special. Check out my 2019 Summer Camp Guide in this issue to see the ASDM camp offerings. I’d love to see a Gila monster this summer.

School’s almost out! Boomer Bear


Boomer Bear,

I love reading. What’s your favorite book? Mine is Percy Jackson and the Olympians: “The Lightning Thief.” You should read it, too!

Your friend, L.P.

What a great book, L.P.!

Rick Riordan is one of my favorite writers. It’s been a few years since I’ve read this, so I’ll read it again this summer.

Readers are winners, Boomer Bear


Boomer with dinosaur fossilWell, I don’t know the name of the museum, but we went there at Christmas and someone there put a Rudolph nose on the T. rex skeleton!

See ya, A.B.

Now that’s funny, A.B.!

There aren’t very many museums that have full T. rex skeletons on display. And even fewer that put a red nose on it! I’ve seen the one at the Field Museum in Chicago. And the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles has its T. rex Growth Series that includes a baby, a juvenile and a T. rex teenager. For my June issue, of Bear Essential News, I’ll feature fabulous museums for families that are right here in Arizona. 

And get ready for Red Nose Day, an effort to end child poverty that happens March 23 this year. Walgreens is one of the partners where you can purchase your red nose in one of several silly styles.

Museums ROCK! Boomer Bear


Boomer Boomer,

Are you a bear? What do you eat?

Yours truly, A.W.

Dear A.W.,

Of course, I’m a bearaardvarks have a lot less hair, larger ears, and a longer nose. As a polar bear, I do like fish. But as all my fans and friends know, my favorite food is pepperoni pizza!!!

Your bear friend, Boomer


Dear Boomer,

Have you ever created a story yourself?

Sincerely, S.C.

Good question, S.C.!

I love to write and have written a few short stories, including some silly ones. I also like to write poetry and a joke or twoyou should try it!

Yours truly, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

My family is going to Belarus during our summer break.

Your friend, M.B.

Dear Boomer,

This summer, I plan on playing the violin, going on a trip to Belarus and relaxing.

A.B. (M.B.’s older sister)

Wow, M.B. & A.B.! 

That might be the farthest any of my friends will travel this summer. Belarus, for those who are curious, is a land-locked Eastern European country bordered by Poland,

Lithuania, Latvia, Russia, and Ukraine. And since you’re a Young Reporter, A.B., I expect a few great stories about you and your family’s epic summer adventure! 

Your buddy, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

Why do people not like writing 80 percent of the time?

Just curious, L.B.

Good question, L.B.! 

For a lot of peopleand polar bears, toowriting can be a difficult process. That’s why I encourage young people to have fun with their words. Words evolve and are meant to be stretched and shaped in different ways.

So this summer, write every day for at least 15 minutes. Maybe try your hand at poetry, keep a journal or diary, write short stories or join my Young Reporters Program and try newswriting!

Write on! Boomer Bear

Boomer the Reporter

Dear Boomer,

My favorite community service project is picking up trash!

Your friend, F.T.

Dear F.T.,

Thanks for helping to keep your neighborhood clean! It’s amazing how much a small team of people can accomplish when they work together. Did you know that Bear Essential News is one of the original sponsors of the Tucson Earth Day Festival? This free environmental event happens on Saturday, April 20 at the Children’s Museum on Sixth Avenue from 10 till 2. It’s so much fun and there are a lot of ideas and environmentally friendly freebies to be had. Read “In the Spotlight” on page 5 for details or see the ad on page 4 in this newspaper!

Going Green, Boomer Bear


Boomer,

I think it’s important to respect others and to be kind so we have a kind world.

Yours truly, D.L.

Dear Boomer,

It’s important because if you respect and be kind, it will make others feel good.

Your friend, S.P.

Dear D.L. & S.P.,

That is so true! A kinder world is something we all can work toward.

And I think that kindness can begin by respecting others, even when you disagree with them. 

Be kind! Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

 I would most like to interview the mayor because he’s coming to our school!

Your Young Reporter, J.C.

That’d be great, J.C.!

Mayor Jonathan Rothschild is such a great role model, and this is his last year as mayor after eight years in office. I see him everywhere around town, celebrating events and talking to folks young and old.

Get the scoop! Boomer Bear

Dear Boomer, 

I’d like to go to summer camp at the UofA! 

Your friend, A.F.

Boomer Bear,

I’m going to stay sharp this summer by taking extra math classes.

— K.P.

Boomer,

For summer, I plan on doing lots of summer camp!

Yours truly, C.W.P.

Sounds awesome, A.F., K.P. & C.W.P.! 

The UofA has its Fusion Summer Camp for science stuff and Campus Recreation’s “A” Camp. And for math and other STEAM fun, Pima Community College offers its Pima for Youth summer camp.

This issue has Bear’s big 2019 Summer Camps Guide to help kids and their families find just the right camp for them!

Summer camps ROCK,

Boomer Bear


Boomer,

Who is your favorite president?

Thank you, E.A.

Dear E.A.,

Thomas Jefferson is my fave.

Your buddy, Boomer Bear 

Boomer reading under a tent.

Dear Boomer,

How many authors will show up at the Tucson Festival of Books?

Your friend forever, L.B.

Dear Boomer,

At the Festival of Books, I would like to meet my favorite people!

Yours truly, P.H.

Dear L.B. & P.H.,

When it comes to reading and science fun, there’s nothing bigger and more fun than the Tucson Festival of Books in the state!

The two-day fun-for-all is March 2 and 3 on the UofA campus, going from 10 a.m. till 5:30 p.m. for both days. The event and street parking are FREE! (Of course, there are all sorts of your favorite or other fantastic books to buy and have signed, plus a fiesta of food. There is a free book giveaway in the children’s area, so stop by the tent.

Check out the middle pullout pages of this newspaper for the complete schedule of Children/Teen happenings, including where well over a hundred kid and young adult writers and illustrators will be!Enjoy lots of hands-on activities in the kids' area and at Science City.

Science City takes up the east side of the Uof A Mall and offers dozens of tents of things to build and experiments to do. We have the Science City pullout guide here, too!

Bear is in tent #303, Boomer Bear


Hello, Boomer Bear,

What inspired you to start this (newspaper) program?

  —A.H.

Great question, A.H.!

Bear Essential News and its Cub Reporter Program were started almost 40 years ago here in the Old Pueblo by a TUSD teacher and her husband, a graphic designer. But we all know that I was the inspiration for the whole thingit wouldn’t be “Bear” without the Bear! 

Your buddy, BoomerBear 


Boomer Bear,

What is your favorite food? P.S.—I just sent in my cyber bullying story.

Your Young Reporter, A.A.

Much appreciated, A.A.,

Learning about cyberbullying and what to do if you, a sibling or a friend experience it are super important these days, so I appreciate you covering it. FYIPepperoni pizza is my favorite food.

Yum! Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

I would like to cover Peter Larangis, one of the authors of “The 39 Clues,” at the Festival of Books.

Thanks, B.P.

He’ll be there, B.P.! 

I also want to encourage young readers to participate in Pizza Hut’s BOOK IT! program, where you can earn free Personal Pan Pizzas for reaching your monthly reading goals.

Readers are winners, Boomer


February 2019 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Boomer sitting on iceberg reading.

Dear Boomer,

Do you like being on the covers of the newspaper?

Yours truly, E.A.

Dear E.A.,

Who wouldn’t love being on the cover of Bear Essential News?! What’s really cooland I don’t know if it’s just me or Art Director Gary Shepard, who draws mebut I always look good on the cover! Remember to find the 10 hidden items on the cover, too.

It’s not just about me, Boomer Bear


Boomer Bear,

At the Tucson Festival of Books, I would like to see the authors of all the hit books.

Your friend, L.B.

You’ve come to the right place, L.B.!

The Festival of Books is coming early to the UofA this year—March 2 and 3. As usual, Bear Essential News will be near the Children’s area over by the Modern Languages Building, so stop by Tent #303 and say hi. We have a News Highlights story on page 5 about some of the fabulous authors and illustrators who create books for kids or young adults.  Three-time Caldecott Medal winner David Weisner will be at TFOB. Juana Martinez-Neal, whose book, “Alma and How She Got Her Name,” was just dubbed a Caldecott Honor Book, will be there, too. And you can also meet James Dean of Pete the Cat fame. 

See you there, Boomer Bear 


Dear Boomer,

How do you come up with interesting stories?

Thank you, D.K.

Hi, Boomer,

What are your best stories?

Your friend, S.C.

Dear D.K. & S.C.,

This polar bear is such a newshound! To sniff out great stories for readers like you, I keep up with the news online, in the newspaper and on TV (you may have seen my Young Reporters delivering their stories Saturdays on KVOA-4). Kids in grades 2 thru 8 can visit BearEssentialNews.com to print and fill out my YR Sign-Up Form to become an official Young Reporter. There are a ton of events coming up that make for great stories! La Fiesta de los Vaqueros (aka the Tucson Rodeo), the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show, Young Reporter Science Night (see page 28) and the Tucson Festival of Books, just to name a few. Young Reporters are our eyes and ears at their schools, on their teams and in their communities! 

Be a Reporter, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

It’s important to respect others and to be kind so people don’t get sad.

When you’re kind to others, they are kind to you.

Thank you, E.H.

Those are some kind thoughts, E.H.! 

 Respecting others is something we all need to keep in mind. Just because someone is different or has different views doesn’t mean they don’t deserve respect. And you’re rightbeing kind to others can go a long way!

 Thank you, Boomer Bear

January 2019 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Boomer swinging at a piñata.

Dear Boomer,

My New Year’s resolution is to get better at spelling so I can write a big story!

Your friend, P.H.

Good for you, P.H.!

Writing gives you valuable practice when it comes to spelling. And just because you don’t spell well yet, don’t let that keep you from writing your BIG story. Once you’ve written your first draft, you can go back and edit it for spelling, punctuation, etc. And one of the best ways to learn new words and how to spell them is to read a lot!

Thank you, Boomer Bear


Hey Boomer,

For New Year’s Day, we partied at our house with all our family.

Yours truly, P.

What a great time, P.!

I stayed up with my folks, watching the rainy Times Square celebrations on TV. We watched the dazzling ball drop, complete with fireworks and cheers from the crowd below. 

Make it a great year! Boomer


Dear Boomer,

This year, I want to write about kids who are making differences in their communities.

Thanks, H.B.

Dear H.B.,

There are so many young people who help make things better for others. Some are part of the neighborhood clean up crews. Some collect food, coats or blankets to donate. Some help at their local animal shelter. I’m looking forward to your story! 

Your buddy, Boomer Bear


Happy New Year, Boomer!

When it came time to celebrate New Year’s, we played games, watched movies with family and ate many snacks.

from H.

Happy New Year to you, too, H.! Sounds like a great way to usher in 2019.

Sincerely, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

As a (Young) Reporter, I would like to write about activities happening at school.

Young Reporter, S.S.

Sounds like a plan, S.S.!

Young Reporters are our eyes and ears for what’s happening at their schools, in their clubs, on their teams and wherever they may be.

Any kid in grades 2 through 8 can join my Young Reporters Program! Just print out the sign-up form at BearEssentialNews.com and bring it to our next Young Reporter Night, which is Thursday, Nov. 12 from 5 till 6 p.m. at Bookmans on Speedway and Wilmot. You’ll get your official Young Reporters Kit and have a chance to win prizes, too!  

Write for me, Boomer Bear


Hi, Boomer!

(As a Young Reporter) I want to write about the weather and my vacation.

 — V.O.

Dear V.O.,

Start writing before the snow melts! It was fantastic that many places around Phoenix and Tucson got snow on New Year’s Day and a few days later. A lot of kids traveled to some interesting places that make for good news stories, too!

Your buddy, Boomer


Boomer peeping through wreath

Dear Boomer,

I like helping serve meals to the homeless, especially around the holidays.

Yours truly, R.A.

Happy Holidays, R.A.!

I’m sure life is hard for homeless people. The basics like staying warm and dry, finding a place to sleep and getting the food you needthings we take for grantedare probably daily challenges. Here in Arizona, we have tens of thousands of homeless adults and kids, so I’m really glad you take the time to help serve up some good food. Check out myfeature on pages 12–13, “Food for EVERY Body,” on how you and classmates can help!

Keep up the good work, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

I am most thankful for making friends since I just moved here!

Your friend, M.K.

Good hearing from you, M.K.

Moving to a new place isn’t easy, but it gives you the chance to make new friends. Hopefully, they’ll show you fun things to do at school and around the Old Pueblo! 

Your buddy, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

What is your fave food? And what is your favorite movie?

—S.S.

Good questions, S.S.!

When it comes to food, Thanksgiving mashed potatoes and gravy are great, as are all those decadent desserts during the holidays. But those who know me know that my favorite food is available year-roundpepperoni pizza!

For some reason, I usually like movies with animals in them. The preview of the remake of “The Lion King” looks great, but it isn’t in theaters till July. 

All my best, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer & Bear Essential News,

I like to read the letters in your newspaper.

I hope you have a Merry Christmas! 

Your friend, R.M.

Thank you, R.M.

Your holiday card with the polar bear mama and her two cubs is adorable. I put it up in the office for everyone to enjoy.

Happy Holidays, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

My favorite food during the holidays is my nana’s tamales.

Your friend, V.O.

I’m so there, V.O.!

I love red beef, pork, and green corn tamales. So remember to have your nana invite me to the celebrations next time she’s making any of these.

Yum! Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

My favorite community service project is working on a community garden.

—C.M. Dear C.M.,

Community gardens are such a great idea. Being grown right there can mean fresher, healthier food for you and your family. Plus, it makes for closer neighbors. Read about growing food in my food feature!

Get planting, Boomer Bear

November 2018 Letters to Boomer Tucson

 

Dear Boomer,

My favorite food during the holidays is turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce.

Your friend,

H.B.

Dear H.B.,

I can’t wait for Thanksgivingthe smell of turkey roasting in the oven, pumpkin pie, and gravy simmering on the cooktop! 

Enjoy your Thanksgiving, Boomer Bear


Boomer Bear,

My favorite holiday is Halloween because you dress up and you get treats.

Yours truly, S.C.

Dear Boomer,

My favorite holiday is Halloween—it is the only time I will dress up!

from A.L.

Dear S.C. & A.L.,

Hope you had a hauntingly happy Halloween! What did you go as? Just to let you know, I made the perfect Totoro. It got me a ton of candy, including some of my faves: Swedish Fish (I’m a bear after all), candy corn and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. 

Your buddy, Boomer


Hi, Boomer!

My favorite holiday is Christmas because my family gets time to be together.

Yours truly, S.S.

Dear Boomer,

My favorite holiday is Christmas because I get to see all my family.

—S.C.

Boomer,

My favorite holiday is Christmas because I love spending time and opening presents with my family.

Your friend, H.B.

Happy Holidays, S.S., S.C. & H.B.!

While any holiday that brings a family together is great, Christmas is certainly a super special time.

Christmas songs help get me into the spirit of the season, and I love trying to come up with thoughtful gifts for my friends and family. 


Have a merry one! Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

I would like to cover events that are happening in Arizona or (do) book reviews.

Young Reporter R.A.

Great timing, R.A.! 

’Tis the season for holiday events. There are concerts, plays, parades and special events at places like zoos, botanical gardens, museums, and kid-oriented places.

And the winter break is when I catch up on the books that I’ve been wanting to read, especially new releases. Can’t wait for your stories.


Thanks, Boomer Bear


Dear Bear,

My fave holiday food is pumpkin pie.

Your friend, A.V.

Dear A.V.,

I totally agreeYUM!

Thanks, Boomer Bear


Boomer-shaped pumpkin

October 2018 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Hi, Boomer!

What is your favorite holiday and why?

Your friend, B.F.

Dear B.F.,

Halloween definitely gets things off to a great holiday start for me.  Costumes, ghoulishly good makeup and a pillowcase full of candy are a few of my favorite Halloween things! Then there’s all that good food and family time during Thanksgiving. And then comes winter break with my family celebrating ChristmasI love the music and the joy of the season.

Happy Holidays, Boomer Bear


Happy Birthday, Boomer Bear!

I had a wonderful experience when you had a showing for “Planes” many years ago. I’m in eighth grade now but still, love reading your newspaper and hope to be a Young Reporter soon.


Thank you, T.T.

Dear T.T.,

What a memory you have and thanks for the birthday wishes.

Any kid in grades 3 thru 8 can be one of my Young Reporters and write for Bear Essential News and even air their stories on TV with KVOA-4, our long-time media sponsor. We have free Young Reporter Nights on the third Thursday of each month. This month it’s at the Bookmans on Speedway near Wilmot on Oct. 18 from 5 till 6 p.m. You can sign up there and get your Young Reporters Kit so you can get started! Check out page 22 for details!

Your buddy, Boomer Bear


Happy Birthday, Boomer!

We enjoy the newspaper.


—A.M.

Happy Birthday, Boomer!

Thank you for keeping kids writing and informed!


—J.S.

Aw, thank you A.M. & J.S.! 

I love knowing that kids and their families are getting the most out of my newspaper.

J.S., I appreciate the recognition. It takes a whole team to produce this educational newspaper.

Thank you, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

How many newspapers do you make (print) a year?


Your Reporter, D.M.


Dear Boomer,

Are you as old as Bear Essential 
News?

Yours truly, I.B.

Hey, D.M. & I.B.

Here in Arizona we print over a million newspapers a year! The newspaper got its start in September, and this is our 40th year of providing great news for kids and classrooms. Last month, I turned 10.

Yours truly, Boomer Bear

September 2018 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Boomer,

Where were you born? And how old are you? I was born in Tucson and am 5 years old.

Your pal, D.S.J.

You’ve got great timing, D.S.J.!

With this issue, Bear Essential begins its 40th year of delivering the great news to kids, classrooms, and families. So be sure to check out my main feature with your parent(s)about how the newspaper got its start here in Tucson. September is also MY birthday month, but I’m just turning 10.

I wasn’t born heremy family and I came down from Northern Canada when I was just a cub!

Your birthday buddy, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

I like writing for other kids. (Actually) I like writing for anyone or anything, and I like reporting!

Yours truly, C.W.

Wow, C.W.

Do I ever dig your love of writing? And for any kid in grades 3 through 8 who would like to start writing for Bear Essential News and even air their stories on TV with KVOA-4, call us at (520) 792-9930 to sign up for the Young Reporters Workshop! It’s Saturday morning, Sept. 15 at KVOA Studios. Professional journalists from TV and print will teach you what you need to know to get started. At this free workshop, you’ll also get your official press pass and Young Reporters Kit so you’ll have the reporting tools you need. We’ll serve up pizza and refreshments to close out the workshop. Hurry, you only have a few days to call 792-9930 to reserve your spot.

Report for me! Boomer Bear


Help, Boomer!

I like this boy and everyone in my grade knows, including him. What should I do?

Thank you, T.P.

Dear T.P.,

There’s nothing wrong with liking someoneit’s how you act that matters. Take it easy, be nice, and see how he acts toward ya! I usually encourage young people to pursue friendship because a good friend can make all the difference in the world. Hope everything works out for you!

Best of luck, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

I hope you like the cupcake (I drew for you). I really enjoy the contests that you put up, and I like the newspaper itself. I’ve always wanted to know your real name. By the way, I was born 9-27-02.

T.M.C.

Thanks for the cupcake, T.M.C.! 

The contests are a whole lot of fun, not just winning, but also doing the activities. Happy birthday, T.M.C. I figure you’ll be turning sweet 16 later this month! Hope you’re still a fan of this newspaper.

Best wishes, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

I think my favorite pizza toppings are bacon, cheese, and NOT pineapple.

Yours truly, H.S.

Hi,

My favorite pizza topping is cheese—I just love it so much!!!

Do you?

— L.M.

Dear Boomer,

My favorite pizza topping is BACON! I love bacon! Do you like bacon, Boomer?

— B.B.

Dear H.S., L.M. & B.B.,

For the record, pepperoni pizza is my favorite food, and I think pineapples everywhere are either disappointed or relieved that H.S. doesn’t like ’em! Being from Canada, I prefer Canadian bacon on my pizza. That ooey, gooey cheese definitely can make or break a pizza.

Your pizza pal, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer Bear,

I hope you have a wonderful and happy birthday! I really enjoy working for your newspaper and having you (as) a friend! It’s a good feeling to see my stories published on the “Get the Scoop!” page or other parts of Bear Essential News. You’re a really good mascot.

Your best friend, B.E.

That card ROCKS, B.E.!

Thanks for all your efforts. I enjoy reading what you write.

Your buddy, Boomer


August 2018 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Dear Boomer,

The best part about going back to school is getting a new start in a new school—I love it.

Yours truly, W.H.

Love your positivity, W.H.!

Hope this new school of yours leads to some really great friends and lots of learning. Let me know how you like your new teachers, too.

Have a great year, Boomer Bear


Boomer Bear,

The best part about going back to school is that I get to see my friends. That’s good because then I have people to play with.

Your friend, W.N.

Dear Boomer,

The best part about going back to school is meeting new friends because it’s fun.

—B.B.

Welcome back, W.N. & B.B.!

I didn’t get to see most of my friends during summer break, and I missed ’em a whole lot. On the bright side, I did get in tons of pool time and most of it was with a few of my neighborhood friends. I was in the pool so much this summer, I think my fur is still drying out!

Glad to be back, Boomer Bear


Hi, Boomer!

When it comes to news, I trust articles that have proof.

Sincerely, P.S. Dear Boomer,

When it comes to news, I trust KVOA.

Young Reporters, C.M., D.M., S.M. & W.H.

Dear C.M., D.M., S.M. & W.H.,

Being Young Reporters who are broadcast on KVOA-4, I should hope you trust its news! And P.S. is rightalways look for proof (accurately reported, that is) when it comes to the news you’re unsure of. To help you separate fact from fiction and report the facts accurately, be sure to read this month’s feature all about media literacy!

Always be accurate, Boomer Bear


Dear Boomer,

When it comes to news, I trust BBC (the British Broadcasting Corporation).

Your friend, K.J.

Dear Boomer,

When it comes to news, I trust FOX News and KHON-2 (TV news out of Honolulu). Other than that, I don’t watch the news.

— K.L.

Dear K.J. & K.L.,

You get your news from some really interesting sources! I also enjoy BBC coverage (the English accents are fun to listen to, too).

I’d be interested to know-how news is covered in Hawaii compared to here in Arizona. 

Stay well-informed! Boomer


Hi, Boomer!

The best part about going back to school is history class because I have a passion for it and strive in that class.

Your friend, S.M.

Dear Boomer,

I feel a bit bored during the summer, and I do well in school. Usually, it’s just a relief to have something to study, to do.

Yours truly, K.L.

Well said, S.M. & K.L.!

Enjoy your studies and have a “beary” good school year.

Your buddy, Boomer Bear


February 2018 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Dear Boomer,

WOW! The Young Reporter Night was awesome—thank you so much! My favorite part was hiking (after sundown). I am so glad that my family and I could be there. Thank you again!

your reporter, C.M.

What a great adventure, C.M.!

For Young Reporters and those who want to start writing for Bear Essential News, call us at (520) 792-9930 to save your spot at our YR Science Night!

You’ll love this if you enjoy science and nature (and barbecue, too). This is a Signature Event for the 2018 Arizona SciTech Festival and happens on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, starting at 3:30 p.m. Bear is teaming up with Saguaro National Park West for an unforgettable night to learn about what’s around us. This year, we’re adding astronomy and will go for a nature hike to learn about what creeps and crawls in the Sonoran Desert.

YR Science Night is free! It starts in Saguaro National Park West’s Visitor Center to watch a short movie on the environment. Then we head out to enjoy barbecued burgers and hot dogs before looking through telescopes and taking a nature hike. You must call ahead of time to reserve your spot. And if you want something sooner, come to our Young Reporter Night at the Bookmans on Speedway and Wilmot on Thursday, Feb. 15 from 5 till 6 p.m. It’s free, and if you have a story to have edited, bring it in around 4:30.

See ya there, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer Bear,

Happy Valentine’s Day! You’re a good friend to me, and I like you very, very much. I really enjoy writing…stories for Bear Essential News. I have fun reading your newspaper

every month. It’s full of excitement and fun. I also enjoy doing the (front cover) Seek ’N Find!

from B.E.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you, B.E.!

That’s such a great card you created for me. I like it so much that I put it up in my office! Enjoy all those candied hearts and the little messages written on ’em!

Thanks so much, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

After (reading your feature on drones) and deep consideration, I think drones are helpful in many ways.

Police officers use helicopters to catch criminals. They waste a lot of money to ensure that they find (the criminals). A cheaper alternative is to use drones. They are small, unexpected and affordable. Thieves won’t know what hit ’em until they’re behind bars!

yours truly, B.W.

Dear B.W.,

What a great use for drone technology! It would help keep officers safe while giving them the element of surprise. That drone feature was so fun to research and write. Thanks for sending in your entry and cool ideas!

Your buddy, Boomer Bear

January 2018 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Happy New Year, Boomer Bear!

My New Year’s resolution is to get better grades and to learn more about reporting.

yours truly, S.C.

 

Happy New Year to you too, S.C.!

A lot of kids need to work on doing better at school. The question is, how do you plan on making better grades? Are you going to be more attentive during class? Study harder and with less distractions at home? Get help from your teacher or ask for a tutor for tough subjects?

For reporting, my Young Reporter Night is the third Thursday of each month, so it’s Thursday, Jan. 18 at the Bookmans on Speedway and Wilmot from 5 till 6 p.m. It’s free, and if you have a story to edit, bring it in a little earlier!

See ya there, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

For the rest of the school year, I’m going to be prepared and willing to learn.

yours truly, A.L.

 

Boomer Bear,

To make the rest of the school year a success, I’m going to study hard!

your friend, O.M.

 

Welcome to 2018, A.L. & O.M.!

What great attitudes to have as you head back to school. I had a fabulous winter breakmy aunt and uncle and a couple of my cousins came down from up north, I got some great new books and organized the stuff I needed for school. I can’t wait to see my friends again, and I feel like I can accomplish anything.

Best of luck, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

I’d like my class to take a trip to the Humane Society so kids can think about adopting animals.

from A.W.

 

Dear A.W.,

That sounds like a great plan for a field trip! The Humane Society does such important work when it comes to finding awesome, sometimes abandoned pets their forever homes. Fortunately, if you adopt a puppy or kitten, dog or cat from there, it has to be spayed or neutered first. That really helps in keeping down the numbers of unwanted or abandoned pets here.

Have a great New Year, Boomer Bear

 

Boomer Bear,

My New Year’s resolution is to be a better writer.

Happy New Year, A.L.

 

Dear Boomer,

My New Year’s resolution as a Young Reporter is to write news stories!

yours truly, C.M.

Dear A.L. & C.M.,

Writing is like sportsthe more you work at it, the better it gets. Have fun and take chances with your words! Hope you stop by for Young Reporter Night at Bookman's at Speedway and Wilmot on Thursday, Jan. 27 at 5 p.m.

See ya there! Boomer Bear

December 2017 Letters to Boomer Tucson

My favorite community service is going to and supporting the Honor Flight and our veterans.

your friend, M.K.

Wow, M.K.!

What a great way for Tucsonans to show their appreciation and respect for veterans. Honor Flight Southern Arizona brings WWII and Korean War veterans to Washington, D.C., to see their national memorials. At every stop, people gather to cheer for these veterans, shake their hands and thank them for their service. What a great way to give.

Your buddy, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer Bear,

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas! You’re a wonderful friend. I hope Santa brings you lots of good presents and fills your Christmas stocking with lots of treats. I really enjoy being a (Young) Reporter for you. And I hope this Christmas comes with making many special memories. You’re very, very special to me each and every day of the year. I got a letter from the general manager of the Grand Canyon Railway this year since I sent him a copy of the story I covered back in October.

Have a fun and very merry one, B.E.

Loved the card, B.E.!

How did your Thanksgiving go? Hate to admit it, but I ate enough for two bears! All the turkey and the fixings were just too scrumptious. And, the leftover green beans and stuffing and turkey might be my favorite part of the meal (besides the great company).

A few of my aunts and uncles and my cousin are coming from up north for a holiday visit. I am SO EXCITED!

Happy Holidays, Boomer Bear

 

Boomer Bear,

I recycle milk cartons and cereal boxes.

—A.I.

 

Hi Boomer,

At my house, I recycle paper and plastic.

yours truly, N.B.

 

Dear Boomer,

We recycle cans at our house.

—S.S. & S.S.

Nice work, A.I., N.B., S.S. & S.S!

Tucson and other cities are working to make recycling easy for you and your families. Check out this month’s main feature, “It’s Time to Recycle!” to learn all the things you should be putting in your blue bin and definite no-nos that need to be kept out so you don’t contaminate your recyclables. For example, if the bottom of your pizza box is oily, tear off and recycle the top of it!

Know how to recycle, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

My favorite food for the holidays is tamales!

Your friend, S.C.

Dear S.C.,

Just gotta say that you have excellent taste!

Season’s eatings, Boomer

 

November 2017 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Boomer Bear,

Have you ever celebrated Thanksgiving?

from R.B.

Dear R.B.,

Did you know my parents and I originally came from the northern reaches of Canada and arrived here in Arizona when I was just a cub?

Luckily for me and my family, we’ve already celebrated our Canadian Thanksgiving on Oct. 9. We started out with some creamy hodgepodge soup, had poutine (fries with gravy and chunks of cheese), a smoked turkey and blueberry grunt (a cobbler you cook in a cast-iron frying pan)! Can’t wait for our second Thanksgiving this month. Be sure to check out my “Kids Who Give” feature in the middle of the newspaper to find out how you can help others. The Salvation Army and Gospel Rescue Mission need frozen turkeys and fixings to put on their free Thanksgiving celebrations for those who need it!

You can do a lot, Boomer Bear

 

Hi Boomer!

My favorite community service project is raising money for different centers (that help people).

yours truly, D.L.

How generous of you, D.L.!

Sometimes it’s easier for kids and teens to collect items, like warm jackets for a coat drive, or shampoo, toothpaste and other toiletries for hurricane survivors like those in Puerto Rico.

But for a lot of aid organizations, money is more helpful. Food banks can take your money, and with special buying power can get four times the food that your money would ordinarily buy!



You rock! Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

Helping kids with their homework is my favorite thing to do for the community.

Your friend, N.B.

 

Nice work, N.B.!

Lifting up other students, helping them to understand and learn to do their schoolwork, is a great way to make your community strong!

What are some of your favorite school subjects? I bet reading and writing are high on your list.

Keep up the good work, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

I’m most thankful for making lots of friends and learning that my aunt is pregnant this year.

— D.L.

Dear D.L.,

What great news for you and your family! I wonder if your aunt’s going to give birth this year or in 2018? And, are you going to have a new niece or nephew?

Your buddy, Boomer

 

Dear Boomer,

My class loves your front cover Seek-n’-Finds, and they love the articles, too!! You are the best writer!

Your friend, B.E.

Dear B.E.,

Thanks for the encouragement!

Keep reading, Boomer Bear

October 2017 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Have a Happy Halloween, Boomer!

I really like you very, very much. Having a friend like you and writing for you is a real TREAT!

from B.E.

Dear B.E.,

Thanks for the groovy Halloween wishes and for the even groovier

3-D card…plus the pun
I did pick up on your play on words!

Wishing you and all kids and families a spooktacular and safe Halloween.

BOO-mer Bear

 

Hello, Boomer!

I’m L.G., and I want to sign up to be a Young Reporter for Bear Essential News. But there’s one problem—I’m not a good writer. My teacher gave me one of your newspapers, and I saw that I could sign up. In class, I have to practice speaking and writing. Should I give it a try?

yours truly, L.G.

Of course you should, L.G.!

No one is born a great writerit’s the sort of thing that takes practice. What’s neat is that Bear Essential News gives you the opportunity to write regularly (I want our reporters to send in at least one story every other month) and to have your stories edited before they’re printed in the newspaper.

Lucky you! We’re about to have our fabulous Young Reporters Night! It’s free and happens on the third Thursday of each month, which means it’s Oct. 19 this month.

It’s at the Bookmans on Speedway near Wilmot between 5 and 6 p.m. You and your parent can fill out the sign-up form and you’ll get an official Young Reporters kit so you can get started. Reporters with stories can arrive at 4:30 to have their articles edited. There’s a presentation on reporting, and snacks and prizes, too!

Report for me, Boomer Bear

 

Boomer Bear,

How long have you been a bear?

—E.L.

Dear Boomer,

What’s your favorite animal?

Your friend, C.M.

Dear Boomer,

As a Young Reporter, I would most like to interview a veterinarian because I want to be a vet!

Yours truly, A.C.

Dear E.L., C.M. & A.C.,

I’ve been a polar bear all my lifeso it has been 10 years now (my birthday happened in

SeptemBEAR).

My favorite animal is the black rhino because they’re big, strong and cool like me. I hope we can work together to bring up the numbers of these majestic beasts to a healthy population.

And A.C., I know a couple of veterinarians who would love to answer all of your questions. One is a reptile and amphibian doctor who has some interesting stories!

Your buddy, Boomer Bear

September 2017 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Boomer Bear,

When is your birthday?

yours truly, K.P.

Dear K.P.,

Funny you should ask that because my birthday’s in September, and it’s also the anniversary of Bear Essential News! While this is the start of the newspaper’s 39th year, I’m turning 10 this month.

I’m the Birthday Bear! Boomer

 

Happy Birthday, Boomer Bear!

I hope you have a happy 10th birthday—you’re a very good friend to me! I really enjoy working for you and writing stories for your newspaper a lot. It’s a lot of fun writing for Bear Essential News and having a special and good friend like you.

from B.E.

Thank you, B.E.,

I love the birthday card you sent, and I also enjoy getting stories every now and then from you!

You’ll really dig this SeptemBear edition. Not only does it have your birthday greeting, but the main feature focuses on journalism.

Much appreciated, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

I’m happy about school (being back in session) because I love going to school, and my friends are there.

Your friend, R.B.

Boomer,

I’m excited to be in school where I get to see my friends again.

—R.W.

Dear Boomer,

I’m happy to be back because I love school and my teacher!

Yay, C.M.

Dear R.B., R.W. & C.M.,

This is my favorite time of the school year! My classmates and I are getting into a good routine at our school, and the nervousness and anxiety of this new year have eased up.

It’s great to be back learning new things and writing more. I love playing sports at recess, and my teacher rocks!

But the best part is getting to be with my old buddies again and making new ones.

Have a great year, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

What is one of your favorite articles?

your reporter, H.W.

Dear H.W.,

Your question sure got me thinking! Our Young Reporters and I have covered so many super cool stories. Some of our reporters have met movie stars, directors, singers…even presidents and first ladies! I’ve ridden in the police helicopter chasing criminals and got to go into Kartchner Caverns before it opened!

There are just too many, Boomer

 

Boomer Bear,

I am happy because I am now in middle school.

your friend, Z.G.

How exciting, Z.G.!

You’re not a little kid anymore. What are you liking most about middle schoolhaving different teachers throughout the day? Getting to choose some of your classes? Having more challenging stuff to learn?

Make it a great school year! Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

Do you prefer math or reading?

from C.C.

Dear C.C.,

My love of reading started when I was a little cub! To be honest, the math doesn’t come easy to me, so I have to work extra hard at it.

All your effort really adds up, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

I’d like to go to the movie theater for a field trip this year.

—C.A.

Boomer Bear,

For a field trip, I’d like to go to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. I want to interview someone there.

Yours truly, R.W.

Dear C.A. & R.W.,

It’s time to plan those field trips! Fortunately, Bear’s Field Trip and Teachers Resource Guides run on pages 20–28 and are online. Also, check out the feature on reportingthe Workshop is this month!

Sign up today! Boomer Bear

August 2017 Letters to Boomer Tucson

Dear Boomer,

Going back to school, I like the recorders from my music class, and I like learning about the scientific method.

yours truly, K.S.

Hey Boomer,

The best part of the new school year? I like my teacher the best.

your friend, K.W.

Dear Boomer,

What I like best about the new school year so far is making new friends!

sincerely S.P.

Dear K.S., K.W. & S.P.,

Hope your school year is off to a rockin’ good start! (Of course, a big part of that is being prepared when you went back.) Recorders are definitely not for memy paws and claws are too big for the little instrument, but I love science! My new teacher is Mrs. Oso, who is amazing. I hope all of you are making a new friend or two at school.

Wishing you a fantastic year! Boomer Bear

 

Boomer Bear,

Do you play video games, eat pizza and read books?

from E.A.

Dear E.A.,

Yes, yes and yes, but I can’t do all three at the same time! The pizza part I can do with either of the others.

What do you like on your pizza?

Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

My family and I just went to San Diego and Los Angeles. We went to Disneyland, Universal Studios and to the beach. It was a long trip to get back to Tucson. When we got back, we all fell asleep and are staying at home. Have a great day, Boomer!

your friend, A.S.

Thanks for the update, A.S.!

What a fun-filled trip to Southern California. I enjoy all of those places but love the beach the most. Earlier this summer, there were a lot of sightings of young great white sharks swimming near shore, so a lot of beachgoers couldn’t go in for a swim. Did you get to enjoy the water?

Your buddy, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

You are awesome.

your reporter, A.F.

Dear A.F.

You’re equally, if not more, AWESOME!

Hope to see you soon, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer Bear,

What’s your favorite thing about going back to school?

yours truly, M.D.

Dear M.D.,

I miss a lot of my friends I didn’t get to see this summer, and I like making a few new friends, too.

Welcome back, Boomer Bear

 

Dear Boomer,

This year I hope to get better at writing through Bear Essential News.

Young Reporter T.L.

Sounds great, T.L.!

See page 23 to attend my Young Reporters Workshopstart writing for Bear and be on TV, too!

Reserve your spot! Boomer Bear

 

Edition: 
Phoenix
Tucson
Issue: 
June 2020