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Breaking News Carroll County

Deb Hoffmann, Guinness World Record Holder for Largest Winnie the Pooh Collection, Reaches 20K-Item Ceiling

Guinness World Records adjudicates the new collection number for Hoffmann, who has held the world record for 13 years

By: Deb Hoffmann

Read the article on PRLog


WINTER HAVEN, Fl. & WAUKESHA, WI.
- April 13, 2021 - PRLog -- Deb Hoffmann, the world record holder for the largest collection of Winnie the Pooh memorabilia, has reached her 20,000-item goal.

Hoffmann reached 20,000 distinctive Winnie the Pooh items on Dec. 20, 2020. On 3/26/21 she received amazing news that Guinness World Records verified the quantity and updated her world record. She has held the record title since 2008.

Hoffmann, 56, has enjoyed a personal brand as the "Pooh Lady" for over three decades. The role has gotten media interviews from around the globe, and never-ending inquiries from collectors seeking or donating collectibles linked to Pooh and his friends from the classic A. A. Milne stories.

While her collection's numbers merit the world record, her hobby's true passion goes beyond the memorabilia themselves, Hoffmann explained. Most fulfilling are the people she and her hubby, Gary, meet, and the events associated with them.

"Not a day goes by that something Pooh-related doesn't occur," Deb Hoffmann said. "Sometimes it's a message from a Carroll County mom asking for help replacing their kid’s lost Pooh. Other times it's someone with Pooh plush who wants to find them a new home where they'll be valued, rather than sold at a thrift store for $1.00."

"Many Carroll County collectors needing to reduce their collection reach out to me asking if I'd be willing to take the items," she said. "I 'take care' of their memories as much as the items themselves."

https://youtu.be/0wGbYiM-9n0


Seeking something positive in a crazy 2020, Hoffmann set a December 20 goal to reach 20K non-duplicated Winnie the Pooh items. The record-breaking item was a vintage 1980s Pooh costume used at Sears and the Disney Parks.

"I searched for almost a decade," Hoffmann said "including in Carroll County". "Finally, a collector reached out and offered the walkaround Park costume to me. He is in fantastic condition and came in the original shipping crate." The costume stands in her office, next to a vintage 1960s costume.

The collection has grown to a point where Gary Hoffmann created a phone app to aid Deb in her searching. She enters a few keywords and has returned photos from her collection database thus preventing purchasing duplicates.

"Prior to 12,000, I most times knew if I had an item," Deb Hoffmann said. "Now I need confirmation from the app. After all, the collection does span two houses."

All-things-Pooh is a way of life for the Hoffmanns. A few years ago, they traveled to England to tour the house of "Winnie the Pooh" author Milne, participate in a Poohsticks competition and visit the offices of Guinness World Records. In 2019, they were featured on the TV show Collector's Call, hosted by actress Lisa Whelchel ("Facts of Life").

"While working on 'Collectors Call,' I met the show's other collectors and compared collecting styles" Deb said. "Now, if we find an item the other collects, we text them a heads-up. Fantastic camaraderie!"

The Hoffmanns annually emcee Winnie's Hometown Festival in White River, Ontario, home of the bear that inspired the stories. Deb Hoffmann donates her duplicates to the White River Heritage Museum for the town to display or sell to help support the museum.

Hoffmann's next target for her collection is significant … but she is well on her way to reaching it.

"We might need another pleace," she teases of the future. To quote Winnie the Pooh, "Oh, bother."

If you are from Carroll County and want more information about Hoffmann, and her world record Pooh collection, is available at www.mostpooh.com and www.YouTube.com/MostPooh5150.


 

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