Patricia "Peppermint Patty" Reichardt is a fictional character featured in Charles M. Schulz' comic strip Peanuts. She is one of a small group in the strip who lives across town from Charlie Brown and his school friends (although in The Peanuts Movie she lives in the same neighborhood and attends the same school). She has freckles and auburn/brunette hair and generally displays the characteristics of a tomboy. She made her first appearance on August 22, 1966.
The following year, she made her animated debut in the TV special You're in Love, Charlie Brown and began (in the comics) coaching a baseball team that played against Charlie Brown and since has had other adventures with him. Uniquely, she refers to Charlie Brown and Lucy as "Chuck" and "Lucille", respectively. Schulz described in one interview how, "By 1966, I realized that it had been quite some time since I'd introduced a new character, five years since Frieda's debut and seven since Sally's. I got the idea for her name after looking at a dish of candy on my desk and decided that 'Peppermint Patty' was such a great name that I just had to use it before some other cartoonist beat me to the idea." He also stated that his original intention had been to develop Peppermint Patty as the main character of a new comic strip, but since he did not have the time to pursue the project, he instead incorporated her into Peanuts. At the time, Schulz already had a different character named Patty as a regular cast member in the strip; the original Patty's role, already in decline because of Schulz's inability to flesh out a unique role for her, was consequently cut back to cameo appearances. Schulz also said that Peppermint Patty was created in response to the women's liberation movement in the late 1960s as part of an attempt to have a character that defied standard gender norms. As a result, he gave her a tomboy personality in addition to being the first female character in the strip to wear a shirt and shorts instead of a dress. In addition, she was shown as being part of a single-parent household. Peppermint Patty was first voiced by Gail DeFaria in the CBS specials, then by various other child performers both male (such as Christopher DeFaria and Stuart Brotman) and female (including Donna Forman (1974), Linda Ercoli (1974), Victoria Vargas (1983), Gini Holtzman (1984–1985)). "Peppermint Patty" was also the title of a song by pianist Vince Guaraldi, which is the theme music for the character in the animated specials (starting with her first appearance in You're in Love, Charlie Brown).