IDYLLWILD, Calif. -- -

The U.S. Forest Service will celebrate Smokey Bear's  70th birthday and teach attendees about wildfire prevention in Idyllwild Saturday.

Well-wishers can sign a card from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. at the Idyllwild  Ranger Station, according to Forest Service spokesman John Miller.

Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell said Smokey's "message of personal  responsibility continues to be as critical and relevant now as ever."

According to the Forest Service, the Smokey Bear Wildfire Prevention  campaign is the longest-running public service advertising campaign in U.S.  history.


In August 1944, artist Albert Staehle painted a poster of a bear  pouring a bucket of water on a campfire and saying, "Care will prevent 9 out  of 10 fires." In 1947, the slogan became, "Only YOU Can Prevent Forest  Fires"; in 2001, it was modified to "Only You Can Prevent Wildfires," in  response to an outbreak of fires in natural areas other than forests.