Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

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Steve Rosinski
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Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Sat Oct 14, 2017 6:34 pm

In the first picture posted below, there is a Batgirl photo on Burt's table from this 1978 appearance, where he is pictured with young Jason Malone at the Gibson's store at the Hamilton Hill's Shopping Center in Jackson, Tennessee. The Batgirl in the photo is not in the style of the TV show and is not Yvonne.

The second picture below that is of Karen Whitfield, who says she was a friend of Burt Ward's family and began traveling with Adam and Burt to their appearances in 1979. She says that with Yvonne Craig's blessings and after receiving the rights from D.C. comics in 1979, she became their "traveling Batgirl" for five years. Does anyone have any memories or pictures of Karen at Adam's appearances? Does anyone know anything about this?
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Steve Rosinski
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Sat Oct 14, 2017 8:53 pm

I found some corroboration. This article from Port Neches Midcounty Chronicle in Texas on February 16, 1983 talks about Burt and Karen appearing at an MDA Friendship Run in Texas:

"In addition to last year's activities, the appearance of Robin (Burt Ward), and Batgirl (Karen Whitfield) of Santa Monica, California will be featured. Robin and Batgirl will be at the Park Central Recreation Center on Saturday, February 26, and Sunday, February 27, from 1-3 p.m. On Saturday, the kids can have their picture taken with the celebrities. Sunday, children can have a picture with Batgirl or Robin autographed as they personally meet one half of the 'Dynamic Duo' and his friend. All monies collected for pictures and autographs will go towards the fight against Neuromuscular disease Ms. Whitfield and Mr. Ward are appearing for the benefit of the Muscular Dystrophy Association."
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BatmiteReturns
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by BatmiteReturns » Sat Oct 14, 2017 9:12 pm

there was a batgirl at our toys r us grand opening in the early 80s.

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Steve Rosinski
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Sat Oct 14, 2017 9:43 pm

BatmiteReturns wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 9:12 pm
there was a batgirl at our toys r us grand opening in the early 80s.
Were Adam and Burt with her at the appearance? Did she look like the Batgirl in the picture above?

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Ben Bentley
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Ben Bentley » Sun Oct 15, 2017 2:50 am

That's really interesting, Steve. I've never seen or heard reference to a "traveling Batgirl". Definitely intrigued to hear more.

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Steve Rosinski
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Sun Oct 15, 2017 9:38 am

Ben Bentley wrote:
Sun Oct 15, 2017 2:50 am
That's really interesting, Steve. I've never seen or heard reference to a "traveling Batgirl". Definitely intrigued to hear more.
Thanks, Ben. I've reached out to Karen for more details, stories and memories of that time. I urge anyone who has contact with Burt to ask what he remembers about those days.

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Steve Rosinski
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:27 pm

Karen Whitfield replied back. She says that picture on Burt's table is indeed of her. She also says she has more pictures and more stories to tell. She retreated from the personal appearance lifestyle to focus on her family. Now that her kids are grown, she'd like to tell her story, possibly in a book.

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Steve Rosinski
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:43 pm

Karen provided me with one more piece of the puzzle by sending me this image from STAR Magazine from 1978. Karen is pictured here in the bottom photo with Burt and described in the caption as his girlfriend.
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BatmiteReturns
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by BatmiteReturns » Sun Oct 15, 2017 2:56 pm

Steve Rosinski wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 9:43 pm
BatmiteReturns wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 9:12 pm
there was a batgirl at our toys r us grand opening in the early 80s.
Were Adam and Burt with her at the appearance? Did she look like the Batgirl in the picture above?
adam and burt were not there. other dc and marvel heroes including batman and robin were.

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Progress Pigment
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Progress Pigment » Mon Oct 16, 2017 3:47 am

Apparently she was Burt Ward's girlfriend at the time. That explains a lot. She's traveling with Burt already -- put her in a Batgirl costume. The one story involving Burt & a girl that didn't make "My Life in Tights" I suppose.

http://www.66batman.com/cgi-bin/yabb2/Y ... 1262979356

I remember the article stating how madly in love Burt and the girl in the pic were and that they were planning to wed.I can't remember the girl's name,but perhaps it was Burt's 3rd wife.

the girls name was KAREN WHITFIELD ,.and THAT NATIONAL ENQ. article was about the upcoming 'CHALLENGE OF SUPERHEROES' reunion of THE DYNAMIC DUO!! not the animated one. and no she never became MR.S WARD, burt has been married 4 times..BONNY, KATHY KERSH,, MARIANA { she appeared on lifestyles of rich & famous w/ burt}..and TR !!ACI
Next week, the Dynamic Duo meets the Clock King!

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Steve Rosinski
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Mon Oct 16, 2017 11:06 am

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Karen provided me with this a better copy of the picture of her as Batgirl that was on Burt's table in the picture above

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Jim K, Bat fan
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Jim K, Bat fan » Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:26 pm

This is a very interesting topic - I never saw Karen as Batgirl or even read about it before.

So - was Yvonne not touring at the time? Actually, I never remember hearing that she was around, either!

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Steve Rosinski
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Mon Oct 16, 2017 8:48 pm

Jim K, Bat fan wrote:
Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:26 pm
This is a very interesting topic - I never saw Karen as Batgirl or even read about it before.

So - was Yvonne not touring at the time? Actually, I never remember hearing that she was around, either!
According to Karen, Yvonne explained to her that when she was in her early 40's , she had young children to care for and didn't want to be traveling to the conventions.. So Karen asked for her blessing to go in her absence and she says Yvonne was more than happy to give it. Karen says that she and Burt applied for and received licensing rights from DC to use the character of Batgirl for appearances. We all know Yvonne did do the occasional appearance in later years,, but not in costume like Adam and Burt did.

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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by West Fan » Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:08 pm

Perhaps now we can put to bed the story that Yvonne always told that Burt "stole" a Batgirl costume from the set and did appearances with his girlfriend with it. Burt has always been adamant that never happened, and was actually quite hurt she was accusing him of that for many, many years. Clearly he was right, as that's not an original costume in those photos.

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Steve Rosinski
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Re: Was there a Traveling Batgirl at Adam and Burt's Appearances?

Post by Steve Rosinski » Mon Oct 16, 2017 10:20 pm

Karen told me she was aware of the rumors, but she didn't attribute them to Yvonne.
She told me:

"We had also heard it was stolen. Burt did not steal it for me for certain. Mine was made for my body like a glove, The color was diff than what she wore. Also, if it were stolen D.C. Comics would not have agreed to have me travel with them nor stamp my autographed picture with their logo."

Karen also told me that this was the look from the comics she was going for. She didn't want to duplicate Yvonne's look because she wasn't Yvonne.
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