Artist Mark Heckman and writer Mark Newman joined forces to tell the story of environmental superhero Billy Cooper, who does everything in his power to safeguard the Great Lakes from his headquarters in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

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Their book, Sooper Yooper: Environmental Defender, and subsequent tour is designed to educate and entertain kids about the importance of protecting our natural resources. Their message is simple: when it comes to the environment, everyone can be a superhero! Buoyed by the success of the book and tour, Newman decided a second book could offer additional opportunities to develop new programs that would appeal to students of all ages. Click on “The Sequel” and “Tour Schedule” pages for details.

Thanks to the support of the Wege Foundation and a partnership with the Grand Rapids Art Museum, students age 5-18 were able to participate in Sooper Art 2015, a competition designed expressly for kids but with an environmental twist. More than $5,000 in cash prizes were awarded to a total of 48 students in the fifth annual contest. See details on the Sooper Contest page.

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