Meet Cathy and Robert Kothe: Inside the Collection
What a perfect collection for anyone who hates Mondays but loves lasagna.
Jun. 19, 2023
With over 6,000 unique pieces of Garfield memorabilia, it's no surprise that Cathy Kothe holds the Guinness World Record for the largest collection featuring the orange tabby cat.
As a child, Cathy fell in love with the Sunday comic, and that love turned into a house packed wall-to-wall with very special and rare Garfield collectables.
We were also joined by Cathy's husband, Robert, who embraces life with the orange cat and refers to himself as Cathy's greatest "enabler." The couple co-authored a book, Loves Garfield, which documented their collecting adventures over the years.
Although Cathy doesn't own a real cat, she has enough tabby cats to go around. Take a look at this massive Garfield collection, and experience Cathy and Robert's love for the lazy, lasagna-loving feline.
1. Original Garfield plush toy
This was the tabby cat that started it all for Cathy. This is one of the original Garfield plush toys. According to Cathy and Robert, as newspaper printing got more expensive, they made the comic strips smaller. The expressive parts, such as Garfield's facial features, kept shrinking. So, creator Jim Davis made Garfield's eyes more expressive. This plush has Garfield's original eyes.
Today this item would be worth around $30, but it's not the price that matters for Cathy. This item changed the course of her life.
2. Garfred Rogers statue
This was a statue originally made for Garfield's 25th birthday. Only 25 of these were made and given away to local charities, who would buy and paint them in anyway they wanted to.
Cathy's version was made in the likeness of Fred Rogers, from Mister Rogers' Neigborhood, and was painted by a local radio station.
Cathy was a huge fan of Fred Rogers growing up, and so her two worlds collided in one item.
Despite it's size, this Garfield is an inside cat only! Today this item would be worth around $25,000, but Cathy will never sell it.
3. Garfield amusement ride
Cathy's collection isn't limited to size and this item proves it. This larger than life Garfield amusement park ride is displayed inside her home, of all places.
This special item still works, and was worth the price she paid. (Which included $800 shipping!) According to Cathy and Robert, it took around two hours to get this Garfield ride into their house. There may or may not be a hole in the wall from their dedication to the process.
The big question: How will they get it back out? Today this item would be worth around $2,500.
4. Garfield crystal
Cathy's Garfield collection comes in all shapes and sizes. This Garfield crystal is seemingly very rare. According to Cathy, no one had seen any of these before.
Not many of these had been made which makes this item extra special for Cathy. Today this item would be worth around $2,000. Now, please don't drop it!
5. Garfield prototype award
This is an item that Cathy found at the 2019 Garfield Convention. It was signed by Jim Davis, making it even more rare. It's a prototype sample, and it was made for an award show.
The final version did end up looking like the original prototype. It makes sense for this award to go to Cathy, we think she deserves it.
With only a few of these made, this item would be worth around $750.
6. Pachinko machine
This item came all the way from Japan. What looks like an American arcade game is actually a Japanese game called Pachinko. It took Cathy about two or three years to find a Garfield version. It still works and is totally playable.
Mainly due to this item's rarity, it would be worth around $750 today.