Beer Bear - Paunchy animated mascot for the Theo. Hamm Brewing Company
spot that ran as a sequel to a Hamm's commercial that featured beavers beating
on tom-toms. Introduced in a regional Midwest TV spot, the Bear first appeared
in a 1952 black-and-white commercial entitled "Bear Beer" that combined
live-action and animation.
The ad spots used the Hamm's tagline "Yes, from the
Land of Sky Blue Waters, to you...comes Hamm's; the beer refreshing as the
crisp, cool land it's brewed in, the beer that captures for you the wonderful
refreshment of this enchanted Northland."
Throughout all his commercials, the friendly Hamm's Bear danced and jumped
and bounced around, but never in any of his spots did he speak (In the mid 1960s
he said one-line "It bears repeating").
The book "The Paws of Refreshment: The Story of Hamm's Beer Advertising"
(Pogo Press, 1990) chronicled the bear's rocky history who hailed "from the land
of sky blue waters."
The Campbell-Mithun advertising agency produced the first
Hamm's Bear ad campaign in 1952. An Ojibwa Indian named Patrick DesJarlait
designed the Hamm's Beer Bear character. Sasha the Bear (trained by Earl Hammond) appeared in a number
of Hamm's early commercials.
In 2000, St. Paul's Pioneer Press named the bear as a
runner-up on its list of "150 Influential Minnesotans of the Past 150 Years."
TRIVIA NOTE: The words from the Hamm's Beer Theme "From The Land of Sky-Blue
Water" were from a 1909 poem by Charles Wakefield Cadma (c) 1937 by Edwin H.
Morris & Company. The theme music by Nelle Richmond Eberhart.
"From the Land of Sky Blue Waters (Waters),
From the land of pines, lofty balsam,
Comes the beer refreshing,
Hamm's the Beer Refreshing"