New partnership to bring kids' character "Franklin" to SeaWorld - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

New partnership to bring kids' character "Franklin" to SeaWorld

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The children's entertainment character Franklin will take up residence at SeaWorld San Diego in March under a deal announced Wednesday by SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment and Corus Entertainment.

A costumed Franklin -- a turtle -- will greet young guests, sign autographs and be available for photographs. Franklin will also appear at SeaWorld parks in Orlando and San Antonio.

Merchandise from the "Franklin and Friends" television show, much of it exclusive to SeaWorld, will be sold at park gift stores. Also, SeaWorld will collaborate with Corus Entertainment on two "Franklin and Friends" TV specials that focus on nature.

The turtle will also be the face of the theme park chain's new SeaWorld Kids brand.

"This partnership is a natural for us to create fun, family experiences that connect young kids to animals and the world we share," said Scott Helmstedter, chief creative officer for SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment. "SeaWorld Kids is a brand dedicated to specifically connecting children with animals and nature, and Franklin is an enduring, much-loved animal character that brings adventure to kids."

"Franklin and Friends," an animated series that airs on the Nick Jr. cable network, is based on a best-selling book series by Paulette Bourgeois and Brenda Clark.

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