HAPPY & BUDDY
Happy The Hodag is as chill as a Northwoods Spring evening and as sharp as a Blue Spruce Pine Needle. Happy lives in the Northeastern forests of Wisconsin that he calls the Mysterious Northwoods.
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Buddy the Bulldog is a small town dog with a big heart. Buddy lives near the edge of the Mysterious Northwoods. Buddy is best friends with Happy the Hodag, which is crazy, because everyone knows hodags eat bulldogs, but only once a month and only on a Sunday. But not Happy. Happy the Hodag isn’t interested in eating dogs of any flavor but does think dogs are super smart and make the bestest friends.
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Happy and Buddy were created for children by author and illustrator Jill Kuczmarski in 2006. Learn more about the 'real' hodag legend and its history here.
HAPPY THE HODAG IS A MONSTER OF THE HODAG VARIETY.
WHAT IS A HODAG?
Hodags are seldom seen, as introduced in Tales From The Trees.
Hodags are picky eaters, as explored in A Monster Misunderstanding.
Hodags are optimistic and awesome, as explained in HODAG.
Hodags are mysterious, as discovered season by season in HODAG, Color The Seasons.
Better together, the Happy and Buddy Plush set.
The Happy the Hodag premium plush toy stands 12" tall, is self-standing and features an embroidered face and soft fur.
The Buddy the Bulldog premium plush toy is 6" tall and 8" long. Buddy has a fully embroidered face, soft fur and is self-standing.
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A NOTE FROM AUTHOR AND ILLUSTRATOR JILL L. KUCZMARSKI
Hi, I'm Jill, the creator of Happy the Hodag and Buddy the Bulldog! I'm also the author and illustrator of all of the Happy the Hodag books, and really, all things Happy. Why did I create Happy the Hodag and Buddy the Bulldog? Well, there are many different depictions of hodags in my hometown of Rhinelander, WI and when I was growing up all of these hodags were shown to be mean and scary. I decided to add a new kind of hodag to the landscape and in 2006 I created Happy the Hodag to have traditional hodag characteristics, but in a more accessible style for children. Happy was the first hodag character to be specifically created for children. These days there are a LOT more hodags in and around the Northwoods—both friendly and scary.
Happy the Hodag, and most times Buddy the Bulldog, star in my children's books Tales From The Trees (2006), A Monster Misunderstanding (2007), and HODAG, A Happy the Hodag Book (2016), along with nine NEW friendly hodags. HODAG, Color The Seasons (2019), was my fourth Happy the Hodag book and featured eleven NEW Hodag depictions, with Happy on the back cover. It’s the exploration of what hodags are up to season by season in a keepsake coloring storybook.
Suffice it to say I've created my fair share of friendly hodags over the years, but there will always be the one and only Happy :)
Both my husband and I were raised in Rhinelander, WI and are graduates of Rhinelander Highschool which makes us official human hodags (the mythical creature known as Hodag is our town and school mascot.) We turned our daughter, Juniper, into a hodag a few years ago when we returned to our hometown to live full-time once more. We enjoy exploring the near, traveling the far, and hanging out with family and friends in the Mysterious Northwoods.