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After six years of trying, the Washington State Legislature has finally passed SB 5741, the Patches Pals license plate bill! Thanks to the tireless efforts of the J.P. Patches License Plate Committee, Erik Madsen, Chris Rimple, Curt Hanks and Eve Kopp, along with bill sponsors Senators John Lovick, Jamie Pedersen, Steve Conway, T'wina Nobles, Rebecca Saldaña, Lisa Wellman and Claire Wilson, Governor Jay Inslee signed the bill to create the Patches Pals special license plate on Wednesday March 30th, 2022!
Click here to watch Governor Inslee sign the bill (jump to 27:30).
The Patches Pals plates are expected to be available to purchase when you renew your vehicle registration beginning around October 1st, 2022 and are expected to cost around $77. More information will be available at the Department of Licensing website.
Those who grew up in the Pacific Northwest know how beloved and significant J.P. Patches and Gertrude were to our culture. Played by Chris Wedes and Bob Newman, they created one of the longest running children’s television shows in American history (1958 – 1981) and were an important part of the fabric of our community for decades after. In order to commemorate and pay tribute to their legacy, we’re working to galvanize the community to support the creation of a Patches Pals Washington State special license plate.
We have met our goal of 3,500 signatures from Washington state residents in order to be considered by the Department of Licensing.
Proceeds from the plates will benefit Seattle Children’s cancer immunotherapy research with worldwide implications for potentially curing childhood cancers using a patient’s own immune system.
Seattle Children’s and J.P. Patches have a long history together going back to the early 1960’s. J.P. & Gertrude often visited the hospital, entertaining patients, families, and staff. During the 1970’s, J.P. and friends made a significant donation to the hospital, funding the J.P. Patches Playroom. The J.P. and Gertrude statue, located in Fremont, also generated a significant gift for Seattle Children’s at the behest of Chris Wedes and his wife, Joanie.
Over time, it is expected that the special J.P. Patches license plate could raise as much as $250,000 or more for cancer immunotherapy research at Seattle Children’s. Immunotherapy is a groundbreaking new treatment that harnesses the power of a patient’s immune system in order to seek and destroy cancer cells, limiting the need for toxic treatments like chemotherapy and radiation.
It's a shame to cover up your smile, but now you can wear the famous smile of J.P. or Gertrude! Sure to bring a spark of joy and nostalgia to all who recognize it! A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Seattle Children's.
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