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Scholastic also announced today the winners of the national 'Clifford's BIG Birthday Sweepstakes' – who will be hosting Clifford-themed birthday parties in their hometowns all this week:
Brandi Mulligan of
Lisa Wilson of
Jamie Martin of
John McKeel of
Oklahoma City, OK and
Heather Blume of
Austin, MN. Teachers also had the opportunity to enter 'Clifford's BIG Birthday Classroom Sweepstakes' – and five winning teachers will be welcoming Clifford to their classrooms this week in
Valley, AL and
Spring Hill, FL.
"We are delighted so many children, teachers and families have chosen to participate in the BIG birthday celebration" said
Deborah Forte, President of Scholastic Media and Executive Vice President of Scholastic Inc. "For 50 years, Clifford has earned a place as one of the most iconic and endearing characters for children, and we're so proud to congratulate
Norman Bridwell on reaching this incredible milestone."
"Clifford's popularity has always surprised me" said
Norman Bridwell – author, illustrator and creator of
Clifford The Big Red Dog. "My family and I are amazed that Clifford has been loved by so many children for so many years."
Today also marks the kick-off of the fifth annual
"BE BIG In Your Community Contest," a signature program of the ongoing Clifford
BE BIG!™ campaign, which invites everyone to take action and raise awareness for how Clifford's BIG Ideas
(Share, Help Others, Be Kind, Be Responsible, Play Fair, Be a Good Friend, Believe in Yourself, Have Respect, Work Together and
Be Truthful) can make the world a better place. Its mission is to recognize and reward others for their BIG actions, to catalyze change in local communities, and to provide resources for everyone to share BIG ideas. The contest invites participants to submit a BIG idea that demonstrates Clifford's Big Ideas for a chance to win
$10,000 in grants to be used toward implementing the winning proposals. Since its inception, the contest has generated more than 3,400 entries from more than 82,000 children, parents, teachers and community leaders ranging in age from 2 to 70 years old.
To kick off the program, the Scholastic Store in
New York City will be hosting a
generationOn 'Party with a Purpose' event for first graders. The event is designed to help children understand the importance of giving, and not just receiving, at birthday parties by providing resources and activities to help enrich children's celebrations with the gift of giving to others.
GenerationOn is the youth service movement of
Points of Light, the world's largest organization dedicated to volunteer service and Scholastic's partner in the BE BIG program.
For those Clifford fans on the go, 'Clifford's BIG Birthday App' is now available on
Google Play™ – and families can also mark the celebration by sending Clifford a personalized birthday card by visiting
www.scholastic.com/clifford/birthday. Older fans can play 'Clifford's BIG Red Word Scramble' on Facebook.
Since the first
Clifford® book was published in 1963, the property has expanded to include 126 million books in print in 10 languages and remains a literary classic embraced by parents, teachers and kids. CLIFFORD THE BIG RED DOG, the award winning television series, currently in its twelfth consecutive season on PBS KIDS, features the late
John Ritter as the voice of Clifford. Using classic storytelling to present universal social, emotional, and moral messages to children, Clifford and his pals have made a BIG impact on how children learn to get along. Now that's BIG.
For more information about Clifford or the BE BIG program, please visit Scholastic's media room at
www.facebook.com/officialclifford. For more information about the PBS KIDS series, visit