The world’s most famous doll turns the big four-O this year. In honor of Barbie’s official entrance into middle age, Mattel will be staging special promotions and releasing commemorative products throughout the year.
On February 7, the El Segundo, California-based manufacturer kicks off the festivities by holding a 40th anniversary Barbie Gala at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City. The Gala, which occurs on the eve of Toy Fair, will feature prominent women from all walks of life, who Mattel has selected to be its ‘ambassadors of dreams.’ At press time, talk show host Rosie O’Donnell was the only ambassador Mattel has confirmed publicly who will be attending the event.
On March 9-Barbie’s day of creation-Mattel moves the celebrations to New York’s financial district for its ‘Women in Wall Street’ promotion. As part of the occasion, it will decorate the outside of the New York Stock Exchange building with pink banners and signs announcing Barbie’s birthday. Surrounding streets will be covered in pink carpeting and street signs will be changed to Barbie Street. Inside the NYSE, all traders will wear pink vests and Barbie Rose boutonnieres and, of course, an actress playing Barbie will ring the bell to signal the start of the day’s trading.
In May, Mattel is set to release a special edition doll, called Barbie Rose, along with an official Barbie rose, which it has commissioned from a national florist. The same month, the U.S. Postal Service will put out a collectible commemorative stamp of Barbie as part of its Figures of the 20th Century series. Other products acknowledging the birthday are in development, which Mattel will release over the next year.