An Atlantic County man has received more than 15,000 calls and text messages, thanks to his grown sons' "ultimate" birthday prank. Christopher Ferry, of Linwood, will turn 62 on March 16.

A billboard bearing the elder Ferry's face next to his personal cell phone number has been up alongside the Black Horse Pike since last week, encouraging anyone seeing it to “Wish My Dad Happy Birthday. Love, Your Sons.”

By late last week, Ferry had already heard from thousands as he posted on Facebook, "As far as Australia. Washington State to Florida. Massachusetts to San Diego. Minnesota to Texas. Amazing. But it’s time for me to get back to work. Thank You All. God Bless You. Best, Papa Ferry"

Christopher Ferry Jr., who lives in Florida, said on Facebook that the billboard is an extension of a favorite prank that he and his brother, Michael, used to pull in their days as teammates on an ice hockey travel team. They would repeatedly tell wait staff that it was their father's birthday, when it really wasn't, in order to get them to publicly sing to him.

The younger Ferry said his dad plans to keep his phone number, even after the birthday celebrations are wrapped.

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