Mini Ben Details:
Born: April 30th 2013 on a flight to Mexico
Countries visited: 37 +
Pictures Recieved: last count was nearly 16,000 however we stopped counting in 2015 and estimate a much higher amount on our hardrives
Dolls in circulation: 12,000+ mailed however we estimate additional 4,000+ have been printed from our website and facebook doll album.
Doll Creative: Each original doll is handmade with fabric or paper and have become very detailed.
Seperate doll designs: 180+
Designers: Current/primary: Amanda Kohler, First: Tracey Anderson, many others have made a doll or two.
Places of note: furthest North: North Pole Alaska-The entire City Council. Furthest South: Antarctica, McMurdo Station with Philip S.
Deepest: 51 feet in Puget Sound with Erika Polcuch and Chris V.
Highest: well….he was born on an airplane between Seattle and LAX 🙂 but there have been some mountain tops.
People of note: General Colin Powell the 65th US Secretary of State, Mark Hamill -Luke Skywalker, Alex Trebek -Jeopardy, Grandpa John Schnabel from- Gold Rush, Maasai Tribal Prince aka Chief’s son in Kenya, Africa, and so many more.
- Family puts Mini Ben on their mothers casket durning the funeral.
- A couple believed they were going to be arrested and their camera was confiscated in Rome.
- We have several picture request rejection leters from the Queen of England.
What Mini Ben has become: It’s about sharing your adventures, culture, and the abundance of life. Mini Ben has become something that brings people together from all walks of life and social classes. Maybe it’s a connection you make sharing your Mini Ben adventures and then seeing Mini Ben in a remote region you will likely never be able to go or with somebody famous you may never meet.
Mini Ben back story:
Almost 20 years Ben Kohler had not taken a real vacation, friends wanted to include him on their trip to Mexico.
First Doll: On April 30th 2013 Tracey Anderson cut out a paper ginger bread man shape and pasted Ben Kohler’s face to the doll. She also made clothes for the different adventures she enjoyed with her sister Kim and cousin Jayme. They posted the pictures each day to Ben’s facebook page just for fun among friends. (pic 1 on flash drive is the three of them with the first doll on that trip)
Florida- Second Doll: Soon Ben’s friend Velvet in Florida asked if she could take Mini Ben on her adventures with her friend Heather. Velvet took pictures with her co-workers at her fire department, even a pic of Mini Ben receiving a scolding from the fire chief. They also visited NASA, Daytona Beach, Daytona 500, Seaworld, and several other locations. Velvet’s son Philip S. also took Mini Ben to work in Antarctica at McMurdo Station. Within a few months there were over a hundred dolls traveling the world and soon thousands.
Nova Scotia: Fisherman in the small village of Pubnico, Nova Scotia began taking pictures of Mini Ben with each other, their boats, and their catch. This led to a much larger participation around the world and a tv interview.
CTV2 Atlantic, Morning Live: Host Heidi Petracek requested a Skype interview with Ben Kohler to talk about the Mini Ben adventure. This interview led to a trip to Nova Scotia for Ben Kohler to spend time with the fisherman who had taken pictures with Mini Ben and tour the region.
Real Ben finally travels: During June 2014 Ben Kohler visited Nova Scotia spending 8 days swordfishing in the Atlantic off Georges Bank. He was also invited to a child’s christening, toured Eel Lake Oyster Farm, Peggy’s Cove, Lobster Pound Holding facilities, Port Royal, Citidal Hill, and many other locations and events. Ben filmed the adventures for a future show. There’s a short video of this on our website www.myminiben.com
Ben Kohler Back Story: Ben is from Redmond, Washington working as a Landscape Contractor and Welding artist with many hobbies and interests. He is married with 2 kids, enjoys spending time with friends and living real life adventures.
What Does Ben Think: I have always viewed everyday life as funnier, crazier, and sometimes more tragic than anything scripted. This story has been no different. At first, I didn’t know what to think, it was fun among the few of us close friends but other people would tease me. The day I decided Mini Ben was really cool, I had been pulled over by a police officer for talking on my phone. He gave me the third degree but when he returned from his car he gave back my license and info. Confused that he had walked away, I leaned out the window and said, “I thought for sure you were giving me a ticket.” He turned with a grin and said, “I recognized your face from a doll my daughter has.” Then he told me again not to use my phone while driving and went to his car.
Mini Ben has changed my life significantly. Before this doll, I had very few pictures of myself throughout my lifetime. Now there are a lot because people asked me to all kinds of parties or adventures with them and we took pictures. I’ve traveled to Nova Scotia. People have come from as far away as Thailand and Florida to meet me. I was asked to sign the bottom of the F/V Wizard from Deadliest Catch I have had a lot of corespondence from celebrities new and old. I drove a lot of people crazy talking about Mini Ben pictures, gifts people sent me, and even distant people that wanted to meet me. It’s hard not to talk about good things going on in your life but sometimes I’ve learned to talk less and nod more 🙂 The people that teased me about Mini Ben slowly went away as a paper doll became fun and cool or because I stopped letting negative people in my life.
4244 236th Ave NE
Redmond, WA 98053