Where’s Waldo? In Farmington of course. The iconic children’s book character in the red-and-white-striped shirt and black-rimmed specs will visit 23 local businesses throughout the community in July. Find Waldo Local is a summer vacation activity and a way to support local businesses and the Shop Local movement in the community, including Maine Stone Jewelry, Reny’s, Tranton’s, DDG Booksellers, 3-D Games, Up Front and Pleasant and many more.

This is the eighth summer Waldo has hidden in Farmington, according to a news release from DDG Booksellers.

Anyone who wishes to participate can pick up a “Find Waldo Local in Farmington!” passport, which contains the names of all the participating sites, and get their passport stamped or signed for each Waldo they spot. And to make things a little more challenging, Waldo’s nemesis, Odlaw, also will be hiding in DDG Booksellers.

Collecting store stamps or signatures at 20 or more businesses will entitle seekers entry into a grand-prize drawing on July 31, with the top prize being a copy of “Where’s Waldo?” Destination: Everywhere!, a tribute to Waldo’s many decades of wandering.

According to the release, Martin Handford’s collections of crowd scenes took the world by storm in the late 1980s, and since then they have held a cherished spot on bookstore shelves. There are now more than 72 million Waldo books in print worldwide, and they’ve been translated into more than 30 languages. An entire generation has grown up searching for Waldo.

Once again, in celebration of Waldo’s longevity and popularity, his American publisher, Candlewick Press, is teaming up with the American Booksellers Association and 250 independent bookstores across the country for some hide-and-seek fun to encourage communities to patronize their local businesses. There is no charge to participate, and the hunt lasts for the entire month of July.

For more information about hunting for Waldo in Farmington, call DDG Booksellers at 778-3454.

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