PBS News

PRESCHOOLERS CAN WALK ON THE WILD SIDE WITH LAUNCH OF "ZOBOOMAFOO" WEB SITE ON PBS ONLINE

Online Companion to PBS's New Children's Series Introduces Young Naturalists to the World of Animals

ALEXANDRIA, VA., January 27, 1999 -- PBS ONLINE today debuts "Zoboomafoo," (www.pbs.org/zoboo), a Web site designed to introduce preschoolers to the world of animals. The Web site is the online companion to PBS's new daily children's series of the same name, created by and starring innovative wildlife filmmakers and respected educators Chris Kratt and Martin Kratt.

Set in Animal Junction, an animal watering hole in the middle of the woods, the site closely resembles the look of the television program. With the Kratt Brothers' playful co-star --a talking Madagascan lemur nicknamed "Zoboo" -- acting as a tour guide, the site incorporates sound and animation to create an imaginative and fun experience for visitors. Other program characters are also present throughout the site to help guide children during their visit.

"The Web site gives us the opportunity to reach out to kids and extend the core activity of the Zoboomafoo television program -- making friends with animals -- to a medium that allows considerable interactivity," said Chris Kratt. "Through interactive game play we hope to expand preschoolers' knowledge and understanding of the animals they love, and exercise their problem-solving abilities along the way."

Designed in concert with the Kratt Brothers, the Zoboomafoo Web site includes the following features:

The Zoboomafoo television program is the latest offering from innovative wildlife filmmakers Chris Kratt and Martin Kratt, the creators and stars of the internationally acclaimed PBS series for school-age children, KRATTS' CREATURES, seen in 34 countries around the world. Aimed at two- to six-year-olds, Zoboomafoo, created, executive produced by and starring the Kratt Brothers, features a lively mix of formats to create the kind of fun and energetic learning environment that has become the brothers' signature style.

ZOBOOMAFOO™ is produced by Mangatsika, Inc. and The Earth Creatures Company. Zoboomafoo is a trademark of the Public Broadcasting Service.

PBS ONLINE (www.pbs.org), PBS's award-winning site on the World Wide Web, produces high-quality Web programming as it pioneers the convergence of television and the Internet. PBS ONLINE features more than 65,000 pages of content as well as companion Web sites for more than 300 PBS programs and specials. The Zoboomafoo Web site is accessible through the PBS Kids neighborhood, the most popular area on PBS ONLINE.

PBS, headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, is a private, nonprofit media enterprise owned and operated by the nation's 349 public television stations. A trusted community resource, PBS uses the power of noncommercial television, the Internet and other media to enrich the lives of all Americans through quality programs and education services that inform, inspire and delight. Available to 99 percent of American homes with televisions and to an increasing number of digital multimedia households, PBS serves nearly 100 million people each week.

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Contact:

Rob Caskey/PBS
703-739-3887
rcaskey@pbs.org