Woah! Meet the Enjoy Illinois mascot 'Mini Abe' - FOX 32 News Chicago

Woah! Meet the Enjoy Illinois mascot 'Mini Abe'

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - The magic behind Mini Abe, a pint sized replica of our 16th President, has set social media on fire.

Good Day Chicago landed an exclusive interview with the tiny travel ambassador that is boosting our state's tourism mile by magnificent mile.

With the top hat and all, the Illinois Tourism Bureau dipped their toe into an advertising gold mine. But it all started out as a tiny fluke.

When the film "Lincoln" was nominated for 12 Academy Awards, the Illinois Tourism Bureau and their creative agency of record JWT Chicago sprung into action. They knew they needed something big to compete with Wisconsin's commercials and the giant flip flops that Arizona dropped on Chicago during the polar vortex.

The Tourism Bureau put together a video of Mini Abe getting ready for his big night on the Red Carpet ahead of the Oscars. During the video, he worked out, went to the spa, walked the red carpet and won his Oscars.

Now, Illinois is definitely a step above the competition. Mini Abe has become a social media star. The Illinois Tourism Bureau says they expect to break visitor records for a fourth year. But the commercials were not inexpensive.

Many of the commercials were shot during the winter for spring travel promotion. So, there were a lot of challenged with every shot.

The Tourism Bureau says Mini Abe is keeping busy this summer. We can expect to see him for a special Illinois fall promotion introducing some romance packages around the state.

Visit Enjoy Illinois' website for more information on Mini Abe and follow him on Twitter at @EnjoyIllinois. Watch the exclusive interview by clicking play in the viewer above.

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