Could Tacoma be the Next Sesame Street?

A team of Tacomans are endeavoring to produce a children’s show centered around The Peace Bus — the 1988, powder-blue Mitsubishi van that’s become a local icon.

With any luck, the Peace Bus we see driving around Old Town or along Sixth Avenue, will soon expand its visibility across the nation.

Kwabi Amoah-Forson, who you may have seen out delivering socks to the homeless this winter, is taking his peaceful endeavors to the big screen with his latest project: “The Peace Bus Show with Kwabi Amoah-Forson.”

The show, featuring Sesame Street-style puppets along with Amoah-Forson and his signature van, will delve into topics like peace literacy, homelessness, incarceration, poverty, and environmental issues, to name a few.

“Many people want to shelter their children away from these realities, but they’re ready — they can understand what’s going on in their community,” Amoah-Forson said. “We don’t want to lie to them. We want to tell them the truth in a safe way that they can digest and understand.”

He said if tomorrow’s world is to be a more peaceful and equitable one, we need to start with our youth.

“We feel that if we’re able to reach kids at a young age and have them be open to humanizing each other, they can help to create a better future,” Amoah-Forson said, adding that increased interpersonal connectivity among students could help decrease bullying, school shootings, and violence in general.

He hopes the the message will resonate with kids and encourage parents to allow the extra screen time, but on top of that, be something people will want to watch, featuring many entertaining characters and storylines.

The content will be relevant across the nation, but will be conceptualized and filmed here in Tacoma.

The first step to putting Tacoma on the map: Making a pilot. The first step to making a pilot: Getting the funding.

Amoah-Forson just published a GoFundMe page on Sunday, Dec. 8, to raise money to pay for actors, puppets, cinematography, and more for the first episode of the show.

The fundraising page will be live until Feb. 1, when he hopes to have filming of the pilot complete. After some editing and polishing of the footage, Amoah-Forson’s goal is to pitch the pilot to networks like PBS or Netflix.

If all goes well, our neighborhood could be on par with Mister Rogers’ before we know it. For more information, watch the promo below or visit the GoFundMe page.

 

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