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Mayor’s days: No to Spongebob! Yes to Dora the Explorer!

August 12, 2010 - 6:06 pm

Aug. 14, 2010, is “Dora the Explorer Day” in San Diego, a day to recognize the young, Latina Nickelodeon cartoon character who teaches children about geography. Mayor Jerry Sanders proclaimed it so.

Hold on a second. Didn’t he also declare Aug. 14, 2010, ” Spirit of ’45 Remembrance Day,” a day of celebration of the Greatest Generation? Yes, he did. He also declared it “Ferragosto,” an Italian holiday (“A Night When Everyone is Italian”) that is traditionally on Aug. 15, but will be celebrated the night before in Little Italy.

Click to enlarge (Can you spot the error in the text?)

OK, those second two make sense—civic pride. But Dora the Explorer? Although educational, this is just part of giant promotional effort from Nickelodeon that has so far convinced 30 cities and states to get on board. The big event is a one-hour special, “Dora’s Big Birthday Adventure,” featuring the voices of Rosie Perez and John Leguizamo.

So, from a personal taxpayer’s point of view, I don’t really agree with giving TV shows free advertising via these official proclamations. In fact, with the budget deficit as it is, I question whether any resources at all should be devoted to these proclamations, which usually memorialize local historical events, honor local philanthropists, signify civic celebrations or highlight health and social issues.

In fact, I was going to e-mail this to Councilmembers Carl DeMaio and Kevin Faulconer under the subject line: “Start slashing here.”

Mayoral spokesperson Rachel Laing says that these proclamations take minimal resources. Literally pennies. An unpaid intern handles the proclamation requests and the only other costs are the paper and mail.

“Proclamations are part of the ceremonial function of a big city mayor’s protocol office, and we get numerous requests for these types of national promotions,”  she writes via e-mail. “We turn down most of them.”

Like what?

“Just last year, we turned down a similar request for Sponge Bob Squarepants. (Poor little sponge can’t catch a break.) The protocol director agreed to send this one because Dora is educational and teaches kids Spanish,” Laing writes. “Nick[olodeon] also was very persistent on this one, which indicated they really wanted San Diego on their list of cities honoring the show.”

Damn, Spongebob, you just got dissed.

You, too, can apply for a “YOUR NAME HERE DAY” by following this link. Here’s the full list of proclamations issued by the mayor this year:

01-9-10 -Linares Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution Day

01-10 – Train Your Dog Month

01-14-10 – Christopher Miller Day

01-16-10 -Erik A. Weichelt Day

01-18-10 -Spirit of 45 Day

01-19-10 10News Leadership Day

01-21-10 -Americas Finest Mentor Day

01-24-10 -VFW South-East Post 5179 Day

01-30-10 – Chinese New year Day

1-30-10 – Mormon Battalion Day

01-30-10 – San Diego Public Library 44th Annual Authors Exhibit Day

2-1-10 – Black History Month

02-01-10 – Go Direct Direct Express month

02-05-10 – George L. Stevens Senior Center Day

02-06-10 – Peggy Cooper Day

2-10-10 – Prostate Cancer Awareness Day

02-10-10 – San Diego Jewish Film Festival Day

02-14-10 – National Engineers Week

2-17-10- John David Butler Memorial

02-18-10 – Healthy Meals Healthy Kids Day

02-21-10 – Larry Ellison Day

2-21-10 – Military Saves Week

02-23-10 – 16th Annual SPAY DAY USA

2-26-10 – Joan Embery Day

2-28-10 – 9-1-1 Heroes For Kids Education Week

03-01-10 Dysphagia Week

03-04-10 – Inspire San Diego Day

03-06-10 – Marching for Kiki’s Red Ribbon Day

03-06-10 -Steve Pisanos Day

03-07-10 – San Diego Medical Services Day

03-07-10 – Women in Construction Week

03-08-10 Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Week

03-13-10 – Japanese Friendship Cherry Blossom Day

03-13-10 – Rocco Landesman Day

3-13-10 – St. Patrick’s Parade and Festival Day

3-20-10 – The Jewel of San Diego Day

03-20-10 -Annie Hightower Day

03-25-10 – Greek Independence Day

04-01-10 – Parliamentary Law Month

04-04-10 -Gary McDonald Day

04-06-10 – Tartan Day

4-07-10 – National Start! Walking Day

04-10 – Child Abuse Prevention Month

04-11-10 – Holocaust Remembrance and Liberation Day

04-12-10 U.S.S. Carl Vinson Day

4-18-10 -Avena Earth Day Beach Clean Up

4-20-10 – Equal Pay Day

04-21-10 – Leonard Sylvester Chicoine Day

4-24-10 – Southeast SD Women Inc Day

04-24-10 -Sleepless San Diego Day

04-25-10 Parental Alienation Awareness Day

04-27-10 -Southern Cal 8a Association Day

04-29-10 -Executive Women International Day

04-30-10 – New Horizons Day.doc

5-01-10 – Carol LeBeau Day

05-01-10 – Dragon Boat Festival

05-01-10 – Walk n Roll Day SPCA proclamation

5-1-10- Suzy’s Zoo Day Proclamation

05-03-10 – Public Service Week

05-03-10 -Southwestern College Sun Day

05-06-10 – Provider Appreciation Day

05-08-10 – A Day of Education and Hope

5-08-10 – Mormon Helping Hands Day

05-09-10 National Women’s Health Week

05-10 – Huntington’s Disease Awareness Month

05-10 – National Exercise is Medicine Month

05-10 – Preeclampsia Awareness Month

05-11-10 – US Constabulary proclamation

05-13-10 – Oncology Nursing Day Proclamation

5-13-10 -RED Day (Renew, Energize, Donate)

05-14-10 -Darlene Shiley Day

05-16-10 – Public Works Week

05-17-10 – Norway Day

05-19-10 – BRAVO Day

05-20-10 – Mary Clark Day

5-20-10 Music Memory Day

05-21-10 Bike to Work Day

5-22-10 – Special Libraries Association 50th Anniversary Day

05-22-10 – USO San Diego Day

05-22-10 -Dr. Ida Greene Day

5-22-10 Southwestern Yacht Club Day

05-22-2010 National Maritime Day

5-25-10 – Mental Health Month

5-25-10 – Robert K. Goff Day

5-26-10 – Breast Cancer Awareness Day

05-26-10 – Young Womens Leadership Day

05-26-10 -Marty Levin Day

5-27-10 International Economic Summit Day

05-28-2010 Sergeant Major Jackson Day

05-31-10 – Financial Literacy Week

06-02-10- Kathryn Vaughn Day

06-04-10 -Robert J. Collins Day

06-04-10- Stepping Stone Day

06-08-2010 World Harmony Day

06-11-10 – ABC Apprenticeship Graduation

06-11-2010 National USA Bid and FIFA World Cup Day

6-12-10 -Girl Scouts Diamond Service Unit Day

06-19-10 – Honor Thy Father Appreciation Day

6-19-10 – Somali Family Service Health Fair Day

06-22-10- Natl YMCA Gynamastics Day Proclamation

6-23-10 Paralegal Day

06-23-10- San Diego-Japan U+I Alliance Days

6-26-10 – US Japanese Friendship Day

06-27-10- 16th annual national HIV testing day

06-27-10 -The Girl in Red Shoes Day

06-29-10- Debra Kilcline Day

07-01-10- LGBT Pride Month

07-01-10 Vice Admiral Kilcline proclamation

07-04-10 – Magic Week

07-09-2010- Scripps Mercy Hospital Day

07-10-10 Tom Hom proclamation

07-10-10 – Somali Independence Day

07-10-10 OMBAC Tournament

07-14-10 Willy C. Gaa Day proc

07-14-10 American Subcontractors Assiociation Day

07-17-10 National Stand Down Day

7-20-10 – Nellie M. Allen’s 90th Birthday Day

07-22-10 -Rev Willie James Smith Memorial

07-24-10 Judy Reeves Proclamation

07-25-10 – Patient Safety Day

07-25-10 -San Diego Yacht Club Day

07-26-10 Supplier Diversity Achievement Week

07-27-10- San Diego Housing Federation Day

07-28-10 – Ricardo Rabines Day

07-28-10 – Douglas G. Sharon Day

07-28-2010- National Association of Black Journalists Day

07-29-10 San Diego Community Housing Corporation Day

07-29-10 – CONNECT 25th Anniversary Day

07-30-10 – Urban Corps Day

07-31-10 San Diego Model Railroad Museum Day

07-31-10- San Ysidro Health Center Day

08-03-2010- National Black Nurses Associations Week

08-3-2010- National Night Out

08-06-10 Rear Admiral Michael C. Bachmann day

08-06-2010-Thanksgiving WISH Week  (Worldwide Initiative to Save Humanity)

08-07-10 House of Ireland Day

8-07-10 -Mr. and Mrs. Angel S. Leano 50th Anniversary Day

08-10 -Purple Heart Recognition Month

8-11-10 San Diego HIV Community Day

08-14-10 -Dora the Explorer Day

08-14-10 -Ferragosto 2010 – A Night When Everyone is Italian

08-14-10 -Spirit of 45 Remembrance Day

08-17-10 Navy Gold Coast Small Business Day

08-25-10 Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability Days

8-28-10 St. Paul’s 50th Anniversary Day

09-04-10 – MDA Labor Day Telethon Weekend

09-12-10 Mama’s Kitchen Day

09-17-10 Constitution Week

09-25-10 Strut for Sobriety Day

10-19-10 San Diego Marine Corps Mustang Week

10-26-10 Access Inc. Summer Youth Day

11-06-10 Playwrights Project Day

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