Franklin Countys First News

Franklin County Animal Shelter seeks votes for Bangor Savings Bank donation

Vote for Franklin County Animal Shelter at the Bangor Savings Bank website.

BANGOR - If you grew up in Maine, the iconic Bangor Savings Bank commercial featuring two playful kittens is a beloved part of your holiday memories. Waylon and Willie scurry under the Christmas tree, swat their paws at ornaments, tear open gift-wrapping paper, and lap up the milk they spilt – all while a musical medley plays that has become embedded in our collective consciousness.

While every advertisement has a shelf life, the Christmas Kittens are truly the exception – standing the test of time with an annual airing every holiday season since its debut in 1980. For many, the Christmas season didn’t begin until this 60-second image ad – meant to evoke an emotion rather than sell a product – had hit the airwaves. Forty years later, it’s still going strong with some fans asking as early as August: When will the kittens ad begin playing?

To mark the commercial’s 40th anniversary, Bangor Savings Bank is celebrating in two ways:

This video ( released today - which peeks behind the curtain of one of the most iconic TV ads the region has ever seen, featuring: Phil Cormier, a TV commercial editor who worked on this ad, the Nite Show’s Danny Cashman, who parodied the commercial, reflections of Bangor Savings Bank employees, trivia including the names of the kittens (Waylon and Willie), that it took four times as long to shoot the commercial because Waylon and Willie kept falling asleep, and that the “meow” at the commercial’s end didn’t come from a cat – but from a studio employee.

Bangor Savings Bank is donating $10,000 to animal shelters in Maine and New Hampshire. The shelters will be chosen by an online vote that starts today and runs until midnight, December 31, 2020. Voters can submit their choice here (

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