SpongeBob Candidates Put Their Best Claw Forward in Presidential Race

Nickelodeon is encourage kids to cast their vote for president of Bikini Bottom in an online promotion with supporters to receive three all-new episodes of SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS on Feb. 19, 2007, President's Day in the U.S. Top candidates are Patrick Starfish and Larry the Lobster. The Patrick for President programming event kicks off Monday at 5:00 p.m. with an interactive, two-hour marathon during which votes are tallied as they come in, and followed by three all-new back-to-back Patrick themed episodes (7:008:30 pm). An announcement of the new president-elect will cap off the premieres.

SPONGEBOB has been the number-one animated kids show on television for over five years and running. And who wouldve thought that after all this time Patrick would actually run for President? said Tom Ascheim, evp/gm, Nickelodeon Television. Its creative new programming events like Patrick for President that keep it fresh and funny, with viewers coming back for more.

Kids may pledge their allegiance and support to Patricks candidacy on nick.com/prezday. They can log on to read up on the latest election updates, vote for Patrick or Larry the Lobster, create their own video campaign posters and share them with friends, voice their opinion on why Patrick is a good President by submitting video testimonials, and create their own mash-ups using clips from the new Patrick themed episodes that will air on Presidents Day. In addition, kids will be able to sneak peek the three all-new episodes on TurboNick.com.

The marathon begins the countdown to the closest presidential race to hit Bikini Bottom. The race really heats up when Larry the Lobster leaves no shell, or starfish unturned and responds to Patricks promise to voters with a kelp-slinging smear campaign. Between episodes, votes are counted and the winners of various states are marked off as they are claimed by either Larry the Lobsters Crustacean Party (in red) or the Patricks Invertebrate Party (in pink).

Following are details on the three all-new episodes:

7-7:30 pm -- In Driven to Tears, SpongeBob has failed his driving testagain. Patrick is so outraged by the injustice of it all that he storms into the testing facility and takes the test to prove that it is unfair and impossible to pass. Only Patrick does pass and earn his license. In fact, as the one-millionth customer at the DMV, Patrick is awarded a brand new car! SpongeBob tries to be happy for his pal, but watching Patrick abuse his driving privilege and disobey common driving rules is more then he can bear. Then, in Rule of Dumb, an oversight in a Royal genealogy document reveals that Patrick is the next in line to receive a kingly title. Its not long before the power of the crown goes straight to the starfishs head.

7:30-8:00 pm -- In The Pink Purloiner, SpongeBobs favorite jelly fishing net is missing. Worst of all, Patrick may have been the one who stole it. But SpongeBob cant accuse his friend of anything until he can find some hard evidence that he does indeed have the net. Then in The Gift of Gum, its Best Friends Day and SpongeBob and Patrick trade presents. SpongeBob presents Patrick with a fancy robot, and Patrick gives SpongeBob his most prized possession: an enormous ball of used chewing gum. SpongeBob is touched. He thinks this gift is the coolest thing in the world. However, once he finally fits the giant wad of gum into his house, it slowly starts to creep him out.

8:00-8:30 pm -- In Rise and Shine/Waiting, a glimpse into the interior of Patrick Stars rock/home proves that his morning routine is anything but ordinary. Then, SpongeBob discovers that his breakfast cereal has an offer for a free toy. Once he responds to the offer, he must wait patiently for the toy to arrive. So SpongeBob sets up camp right next to his mailbox, determined to be present when the mailman shows up with his treasure. And, in Sing a Song of Patrick SpongeBob helps Patrick promote a song he wrote by securing some airtime at the local radio station.

Launched in July 1999, SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS has since emerged as a pop culture phenomenon and one of the most popular series in kids television history. The Saturday morning play of the series currently ranks as the number-one rated program among kids 2-11. Nearly 67.2 million viewers tune into the show each month, including 24 million kids 2-11, 14.5 million tweens 9-14 and 32.9 million adults 18+. (Source: Nielsen Cume Data November 2006). Adult viewers also continue to tune in and have increased by 106% since the premiere of the show.

The most widely distributed property in MTV Networks history, SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS is syndicated in 171 markets in 25 languages and consistently rates in the top three series among kids in every major market it currently airs in across Europe, Asia, Australia, Latin America and the U.S.

Nickelodeon, in its 27th year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. The company includes television programming and production in the U.S. and around the world, plus consumer products, online, recreation, books, magazines and feature films. Nickelodeons U.S. television network is seen in almost 92 million households and has been the number-one-rated basic cable network for nearly 12 consecutive years.

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