Wendy's Int'l is offering an assortment of hockey-
themed toys to promote its NHL partnership and status as
"The Official Hamburger of the NHL." NHL/Wendy's Kids' Meal
Bags will feature a five-piece collection of hockey toys,
which will be distributed at 4,600 participating Wendy's
restaurants from March 23 through May 3. Wendy's will
support the program with 30-second national TV spots on
children's programming. The program will also be promoted
through www.nhl4kids.com and wendy's.com. Wendy's has also
created the NHL All-Star Artist Coloring Contest, where
children can design and color their own hockey goalie mask.
The NHL will reproduce the grand prize winner's artwork on
an actual goalie mask and the winner will be awarded a trip
to the '99 NHL All-Star Game in Tampa, FL (Wendy's).
The LPGA launched its new ad campaign from Dallas-based
DDB Needham during ESPN's coverage of the Standard Register
Ping tournament. One spot featured the career achievements
of Nancy Lopez and reads: "1978 Rookie of the Year. 48 Tour
victories. Over $5 million in career earnings. Three-time
Vare Trophy winner. Four-time Player of the Year. A Hall
of Famer after just 10 years. Gave birth three times. Top
that one, gentlemen. LPGA -- Hey, we can play" (THE DAILY).
The initial rollout of the campaign also includes a print ad
featuring Annika Sorenstam and another TV spot featuring
Michelle McGann. The next phase of TV spots, which begin
production at the end of this month, will feature Karrie
Webb, Kelly Robbins and Laura Davies, among others (LPGA).
CHIP SHOTS: The LPGA has partnered with Ombrelle
sunscreen and the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) to
launch a skin cancer detection and protection initiative at
select tour events. The program will offer LPGA players and
spectators free skin scans which detect UV damage, as well
as free Ombrelle product samples. The promo will launch at
the next week's Nabisco Dinah Shore, which will also serve
as the U.S. launch for Ombrelle products (Ombrelle).
MLB'S ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGH: MLBP has retained GBSM
Public Relations and Sander/GBSM Marketing to provide local
PR for the '98 Pinnacle All-Star FanFest, to be held July 3-
7 at the CO Convention Center (MLBP). In Denver, Penny
Parker previews the FanFest. GBSM partner Rob Johnson: "The
average fan won't be able to drive up to Coors Field and buy
tickets for the [All-Star] game. Instead, (FanFest) will
give them a baseball Disneyland" (DENVER POST, 3/20).
LANDING ON MARS: Oakley has begun shipping its Mars
model X-Metal sunglasses line. Suggested retail price of
the glasses will be $265 to $315. The Mars design was
influenced by board member Michael Jordan, who received his
pair with serial no. 000023. Jordan is featured in the Mars
ad campaign, which launched last month (Oakley).
NOTES: The new Budweiser ad campaign from IL-based DDB
Needham will feature boxing announcer Michael Buffer and his
"Let's Get Ready To Rumble" tag. No break date has been
announced (AD AGE, 3/19)....In Boston, Gregg Krupa examines
the NCAA tournament's financial impact on participating
schools. Krupa writes that a study by NC-based Price/McNabb
estimated that last year's Sweet 16 run by UT-Chatanooga
brought the school $22M worth of free media exposure (BOSTON
GLOBE, 3/20)....In Montreal, an editorial addresses Nike's
recent woes: "While [Nike] appropriated the name of a Greek
goddess, it neglected to glance at the rest of the ancient
Greeks' beliefs. Had it done so, it might have known to
avoid hubris -- the Greek's great sin, the trait of
arrogance, of putting yourself too high. Few other
companies have gone down this road so brazenly." The
editorial concludes: "Every last thunderbolt that the
business gods throw at it Nike deserves" (GAZETTE, 3/20).
....L.A.-based K2 will begin putting its logo on shorts,
shirts and caps to be sold in surf shops. K2 is using its
acquisition of Katin USA as a "springboard" into the $1.7B
surf wear industry (L.A. TIMES, 3/19).
The Marquee Group has entered into a joint venture with
NY-based Stars & Strategies to broaden marketing,
sponsorship and TV opportunities for Stars & Strategies'
current and future women clients. Stars & Strategies'
athletes include U.S. Soccer players Julie Foudy and Carla
Overbeck, Olympic swimmer Jenny Thompson and U.S. softball
player Gillian Boxx. Stars & Strategies' corporate clients
include Conde Nast Sports for Women, Female Athlete catalog
company and KidsPeace National Sports Council (THE DAILY).
The Lenihan Group has formed a new sports and
entertainment marketing agency called Branding Partners.
The TX-based agency will help clients increase brand
awareness by developing integrated marketing partnerships
with sports and entertainment properties. Houston-based
Continental Airlines is the agency's first client. Branding
Partners will help Continental further develop relationships
with performing arts organizations. Marketing veteran Susan
Lenihan is Branding Partners' President (Branding Partners).