Nickelodeon Announces First-Ever Partnership with WNBA

-- Network Aligns Its Award-Winning “Let’s Just Play” Pro-Social Campaign with WNBA’s Be-Smart-Be-Fit-Be Yourself National Fitness Program --

-- Partnership Also Includes Nick Presence at WNBA Games with “Let’s Just Play” Stretch Breaks and More! --

New York, NY – July 25, 2005 – Nickelodeon is aligning its “Let’s Just Play” initiative, which encourages healthy and active lifestyles for kids and local communities, with the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) in a first-ever partnership. The brands’ alliance includes a Nickelodeon sponsorship of the WNBA’s Be Fit Tour, part of the league’s Be Smart-Be Fit-Be Yourself national fitness initiative. The deal also includes a significant Nick presence at WNBA games featuring “Let’s Just Play” stretch breaks, in-arena Public Service Announcements (PSA), specialty prize packages and WNBA tagged “Let’s Just Play” on-air spots.

“The WNBA has a stellar reputation among sports leagues for its commitment to inspire kids and young adults to live healthier lives through sports and other initiatives. Pairing our ‘Let’s Just Play’ program with the WNBA was a natural fit,” said Jean Margaret Smith, Senior Vice President, Nickelodeon Public Affairs. “With ‘Let’s Just Play’s’ reach to kids in local communities, the WNBA’s Be Fit Tour and games that Nickelodeon will participate in throughout the rest of the season, this partnership will further extend messages of encouraging healthy and active lifestyles for kids and families.”

Throughout the remainder of July and August, Nickelodeon will serve as a promotional partner of the 2005 WNBA Be Fit Tour. The Be Fit Tour takes the WNBA’s Be Smart-Be-Fit-Be Yourself program, which was created to emphasize the importance of health and fitness for women and young people, on the road. During each Tour stop, Nickelodeon’s “Let’s Just Play” will sponsor an activity booth and an interactive obstacle course which will be conducted twice during each Tour day. “Let’s Just Play” prizes and educational materials will also be provided at each Tour stop.

“The WNBA delivers family-friendly entertainment both in arena, on TV and throughout local communities, so teaming up with Nickelodeon, the leading kid’s entertainment network, makes perfect sense,” said Mary Reiling Spencer, Vice President, WNBA Marketing Partnerships. “Nickelodeon’s ‘Let’s Just Play’ and the WNBA’s Be Smart-Be Fit-Be Yourself programs were created in the same spirit and aim to encourage young people to get out and be active. For that reason, we are very pleased that by joining forces, we’ll be bringing that message to a broad, national audience.”

Nickelodeon has also partnered with the WNBA to help promote WNBA Kids Week, which runs through Sunday, July 31. The network will promote the week’s activities on all of its websites (; and to help bring the unique WNBA experience to young people and families across the country. A “Let’s Just Play” spot entitled What Play Does with a five-second on-air tag that promotes the WNBA’s Be Smart-Be-Fit-Be Yourself campaign will also run on Nick’s air beginning now through October 1, 2005.

In addition, Nickelodeon will have a presence at key WNBA games. Each WNBA Team will promote the “Let’s Just Play” initiative during at least two home games. This includes broadcasting a 60-second “Let’s Just Play” PSA on the JumboTron and “Let’s Just Play” halftime stretch breaks, featuring activities and exercise movements to get the body moving, and lead by Nick characters, WNBA Team mascots and/or cheerleaders. Nick-themed prize packages including SpongeBob SquarePants mini-basketballs, tee shirts, Boom Boxes and DVDs, Dora the Explorer playground balls, and “Let’s Just Play” wristbands, headbands, notebooks and Frisbees will be also given away. Characters such as SpongeBob SquarePants or Dora the Explorer will also make appearances at select games.

About Nickelodeon’s “Let’s Just Play” Pro-Social Campaign
Currently in its third year, “Let's Just Play” is Nickelodeon's pro-social commitment to encourage kids to participate in active, healthy, and playful lifestyles – a much needed antidote to reports of the rise in childhood obesity, the concerns about reduction of PE in schools and in after-school programs, and the over-scheduled and sedentary lifestyles of kids today. In addition to using the power of Nickelodeon's air, online sites, and celebrity support, the channel devotes significant year-round resources to building a grassroots infrastructure that supports physical play opportunities in communities everywhere. “Let’s Just Play” was recently awarded four Cable Television Public Affairs Association Beacon Awards, which recognize excellence in the public affairs industry. For more information on the “Let’s Just Play” program, visit

About Be Fit Tour
The WNBA Be Fit Tour features exercise classes, interactive basketball and trivia contests and appearances by top WNBA players. Throughout the summer, the Tour will make stops at festivals, fairs and WNBA arenas around the country. Remaining Tour stops include: Indianapolis, IN (July 23-24); Minneapolis, MN (July 29-30); and Seattle, WA (August 5-6). For more information on the Be Smart-Be-Fit-Be Yourself campaign visit

About Nickelodeon
Nickelodeon, now in its 26th year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse, global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The company includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, online, recreation, books, magazines and feature films. Nickelodeon’s U.S. television network is seen in more than 89 million households and has been the number-one-rated basic cable network for ten consecutive years. Nickelodeon and all related titles, characters and logos are trademarks of Viacom International Inc.

About WNBA
The WNBA is deeply committed to creating programs that improve the quality of life for all people, with a special emphasis on promoting health and fitness, breast health awareness, reading and youth basketball programs. As we mark the ninth season of the WNBA, the league and its players continue these efforts through the implementation of community outreach programs including: WNBA Be Smart-Be Fit-Be Yourself; WNBA Breast Health Awareness; Read to Achieve; and Jr. NBA & Jr. WNBA.

The 2005 WNBA All-Star Game, which was played in front of a sellout crowd at Mohegan Sun Arena, saw the highest scoring game in WNBA history and culminated with a slam dunk by veteran All-Star Lisa Leslie. The ABC telecast reached more international viewers than ever as it was broadcast in 193 countries by 52 telecasters in 31 languages allowing the league’s global fan base to witness all the action. WNBA programming is broadcast on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 and NBA-TV.