Hermey the Dentist gets his (postage) due.

Four characters from the television special "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" are being featured on U.S. Postal Service stamps for the 2014 holiday season. Photo Courtesy U.S. POSTAL SERVICE

The Statue of Liberty, Albert Einstein, Elvis – through the years, these national treasures  joined the ranks of countless others whose images decorate the United States Postal Service’s precious commodity: postage stamps.

But have any received the rank of Dental Do Gooder?

Don’t think so.

After 50 years of dreaming about becoming a dentist and promoting good dental health to his friend Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and everyone in the North Pole, Hermey the Elf was not only featured on a Forever stamp, but also recently named a DDG—Dental Do Gooder, that is, by the president of the American Dental Association (ADA).

In honor of Hermey’s DDG designation, the ADA’s website, MouthHealthy.org, features a fun dental health quiz for families, plus a separate sweepstakes drawing to win a Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer prize package. Free downloadable coloring book pages featuring Hermey and good dental health tips also appear on the ADA’s MouthHealthyKids.org.

The animated classic “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” tells the tale of how Rudolph and Hermey were initially rejected by their peers for being different, yet they go on to triumph when they show that their differences make them unique and helpful to their community. The program airs Tuesday, December 9 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.

Earlier this year, Hermey’s creator, producer-director Arthur Rankin Jr. died, and was touted by Rick Goldschmidt in an LA Times story as “the Walt Disney of stop-motion animation.” Goldschmidt chronicled the history of Rankin-Bass productions in books and a website.

According to the LA Times article, more than five decades ago Rankin hoped a network would like his stop-motion holiday special enough to run it two or three times.

When “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” aired in 1964, the reception secured Rankin and partner Jules Bass a position in TV history as “pioneers of the animated holiday special.”

“Rudolph,” remains the longest-running Christmas TV special, “one of only four 1960s Christmas specials still being telecast,” according to the Archive of American Television. The others, according to the LA Times, are “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” and another Rankin-Bass creation, “Frosty the Snowman.”


Southern hospitality.

Regarding their recent Dentistry From the Heart event, Dr. Jeff Newbern of the Newbern Family Dental Practice told the Valdosta Daily Times “I was amazed at the generosity of our dental professional community."

Benco Dental rep Joe Ed Jackson, shown, manned the lunch grill at the Newbern Family Dental Practice Dentistry From the Heart event November 8 in Valdosta, Georgia.

The Valdosta Daily Times and Dee Rivers Radio helped get word out. Refreshments for the attendees, volunteers and staff were donated by McDonalds, Smok’N Pig, Pizza Hut, Chick-Fil-A, Pepsi, Blue Summit Waters, Food Bank of Valdosta, Sam’s Club, Winn Dixie and Publix. Benco Dental rep Joe Ed Jackson manned the lunch grill. Robert Shaughnessy, representing Sam’s Club, was a workhorse that day from pre-dawn to sunset. Kyle Keller’s band provided a mid-day music break for people waiting their turn in the dental office. Outhouse Port-A-Potties’ donation was a necessity.

Does this description by the Valdosta Daily Times sound like your summer family reunion? Perhaps that is because those at the November 8 Dentistry from the Heart event bonded throughout the day while providing free dentistry (an excess of $60,000 worth) to more than 170 residents of Valdosta and surrounding areas.

Event host Dr. Jeff Newbern of the Newbern Family Dental Practice, shown here with the practice staff, told the Valdosta Daily Times “I was amazed at the generosity of our dental professional community.”

Dentistry From The Heart is a national non-profit organization that works with hosting dental practices, like Newbern Family Dental Practice, to provide dental services to people who otherwise would be unable to take care of their dental needs.

New York loves teeth. Does your state?


At least that is how it appears to travelers passing through the Empire State.

During a recent visit to Kingsland Point Park in Sleepy Hollow, N.Y., CenterPoint Design’s Amanda Griffith spotted the tooth and toothbrush seating shown above.


Oral health-inspired artwork brightens the walkways of downtown Ithaca, N.Y.

On a stroll through Ithaca, N.Y.’s  downtown, this MolarMuse discovered community artwork, shown at right, seemingly inspired by a quest for better oral hygiene.

Transplanted to Pittston, Pennsylvania, a welcoming icon at the home office Benco Dental, once graced a park in NYC. The 1,000-pound sculpture with the original name “The Little Soldier,” shown below, has greeted visitors at of the nation’s largest privately owned dental distributor since 1984, but traces its, ahem, roots, to the Big Apple.

In an effort to inspire a bit of friendly competition, TheDailyFloss.com @the_daily_floss invites you to share photos that illustrate a denticle-loving location in your path. Perhaps another state serves up smiles with its unique incisor-inspired sculpture or a marvel of molar seating. Send your images to kceruti@benco.com and check back to see them featured in future blogs.

Benco Tooth

This 1,000-pound anatomically incorrect work of art greets visitors at Benco Dental’s CenterPoint home office in Pittston, Pa., but it originally hailed from NYC.


Rock with the Docs

rock with docs

Haven’t picked up your guitar since your dental school garage band? You could be using it and your oral health powers for good.
Just use the example set by New Hampshire General Dentist, Dr. Nicholas C. Kanelos Jr. who will take the stage with band Revolving Door to raise funds to support local families in the Greater Strafford County area gain access to quality health care, according to a story in seacoastonline.com

With Dr. Kanelos on keyboards, guitar and vocals, his band Revolving Door will join another band, No Heavy Lifting, at Rock with the Docs concert and dance party fundraiser on Friday, Nov. 14. The event takes place at the Rivermill at Dover Landing at 7 p.m. and features local, physician led rock bands.

A former member of the Boston-based band Unfinished Business that headlined at Boston rock clubs like The Paradise, Jumpin’ Jack Flash, Bunratty’s and the Channel, Dr. Kanelos is a general dentist and co-owner of Garrison Family Dental in Dover, New Hampshire.

Find out more about Rock with the Docs at: https://www.facebook.com/events/285401881608121/?fref=ts

Falsely accused?


Misplaced dentures are ranked among lame sick-day excuses (false teeth flew out the car window) and at the root of unique acts of kindness (dentist replaces dentures flushed down the loo). Most recently, one Massachusetts woman recently blamed her brush with the law on the artificial appendages.

Caterina Froio-Chaput, of Oxford, according to a report by the Telegram & Gazette, told police that false teeth had been planted in her pocket as, ahem,  false evidence.

Facing charges for allegedly yanking said teeth out of another woman’s mouth and throwing a beer bottle at her, Froio-Chaput presented her claim.

The backstory: According to the Telegram & Gazette story, police say she told police she confronted an American Legion bartender who she believed was having an affair with Froio-Chaput’s estranged husband.