The Peanuts and NASA have enjoyed a decades-long partnership. Since the late 1960s, astronauts have bestowed the Silver Snoopy Award to outstanding NASA employees, and Snoopy has been the space agency's official safety mascot ever since. As part of their latest collaboration, Charles M. Schulz's beloved characters will appear in a collection of NASA-themed books to be distributed at McDonald's restaurants.
Throughout the first half of September—National Literacy Month—kids will get one of four Snoopy mini-books as their McDonald's Happy Meal toy. The titles include Snoopy Blasts Off, Snoopy's Constellation Quest, Snoopy the Mars Rover, and Snoopy to the Moon. Each booklet features Snoopy on a different adventure in space and includes activities like a hidden-image search. In addition to marking National Literacy Month, the Happy Meal toys celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.
The Happy Meal promotion is part of a new effort from NASA and Peanuts Worldwide to get young learners interested in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math). The project was formalized through a NASA Space Act agreement, and so far it has led to a short documentary, events, and a STEM-based elementary school curriculum featuring Peanuts characters in space.
This isn't the first time McDonald's has given away reading materials with its Happy Meals. Earlier this year, McDonald's restaurants in New Zealand distributed miniatures version of Roald Dahl titles like Matilda and The BFG. As was the case with that promotion, these new NASA books will only be available for a limited time.