In case you forgot what day it was, Google is now 'Topeka'

Kansas City StarApril 1, 2010 

When you live in the state known for Toto, tornadoes and Obama's mama, it pays to have a sense of humor.

But Thursday, April Fool's Day, the folks at Google weren't kidding when, to honor the Kansas capital, the company changed its on-line logo, just for one day, to read . . . TOPEKA.

Yes, worldwide — from Bangor, Maine, to Bangladesh, from Kansas to Kuala Lumpur — if anyone who logs onto, up pops the name "Topeka" in Google’s characteristic blue, red, yellow and green (six letters in both names).

Talk about going global.

Of course, turn around is fair play. In many ways, Google is just being neighborly in a Midwestern way, like returning a bud case with a bud in it, or a casserole dish with, well, not tuna.

Early last month, Topeka Mayor Bill Bunten, hoping to lure Google's "Fiber for Communities" project — a technology initiative that, for free, aims to wire several chosen communities with ultra-high speed broadband internet, some 100 times faster than what is now available — signed a proclamation changing Topeka’s name for the month of March to Google.

All month, if you logged on to, up popped the page that read Google, Kansas in the upper left- hand corner. The logo was still there on April 1.

"Someone called it a monumental suck up. Sure! We're not proud," Bunten said.

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