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Sixers retain Jim Henson's Creature Shop & Raymond Entertainment Group to find new mascot - 11/22/2011

PHILADELPHIA, PA. – NOVEMBER 22, 2011 – The Philadelphia 76ers new Chief Executive Officer and co-Owner Adam Aron announced today that its rabbit mascot, Hip-Hop, informed the team’s new ownership group that he has fallen in love, married and will relocate to a rural part of Pennsylvania to start a family. He will therefore be unable to serve as the 76ers team mascot going forward, and will not again appear at a Sixers game.

As a result, the Sixers have hired the world famous Jim Henson Creature Shop™ and Raymond Entertainment Group to recruit a new team mascot.

“We have proclaimed quite loudly in Philadelphia that we will listen to Sixers fans,” Aron said. “In the 6,500 fan comments and suggestions we received so far at NewSixersOwner.com, there was a tidal wave of commentary suggesting the Sixers needed a new mascot. We have hired an incredibly talented duo in Jim Henson’s Creature Shop and the Raymond Entertainment Group to help us develop a new mascot for the 76ers.”

The process has already begun, with Jim Henson’s Creature Shop™ and Raymond Entertainment Group working in conjunction with the Sixers to find a new official team mascot.

The new mascot comes at a time when the Sixers new ownership has pledged to transform and enhance the game presentation at Sixers games.

ABOUT THE JIM HENSON CREATURE SHOP

Jim Henson's Creature Shop provides digital visual effects, animatronic creatures, animation and soft puppets to the international film, television, online and advertising industries. Based in Los Angeles and New York with satellite shop capabilities internationally, the Shop is known for designing and building some of the world's best known characters including Elmo from "Sesame Street," Miss Piggy from "The Muppet Show," the Baby from "Dinosaurs," Rygel from "Farscape," and the Skeksis from "The Dark Crystal." Other credits include “Where the Wild Things Are,” "Five Children and It," the critically acclaimed television series "Farscape," "George Of The Jungle," "101 Dalmatians," "Cats and Dogs,” and most recently, “Sid the Science Kid” currently airing on PBS KIDS.

A recipient of more than 9 Emmy Awards for its outstanding work building puppets for "Sesame Street," the Shop also received an Academy Award for its visual effects work on the film "Babe." Other awards include a Scientific and Engineering Academy Award for the Henson Performance Control System as well as an Engineering Emmy, the Computer Graphics World Innovation Award, and the Computerworld Honors 21st Century Achievement Award, all given to the Shop for its work in developing the Henson Digital Puppetry Studio, a patented control system technology that enables performers to physically puppeteer and voice computer generated (CG) characters in real time.

ABOUT DAVE RAYMOND AND THE RAYMOND ENTERTAINMENT GROUP

Dave Raymond pioneered the field of sports mascots with his innovative inhabitation of the world-renowned Phillie Phanatic. He was the original Phanatic, and his vision and performance skill spawned a revolution in the mascot industry, leading sportscaster and baseball analyst Tim McCarver to name the Phanatic the “best mascot in baseball” in 1993.

Creating fan adoration, brand leadership, and sponsorship opportunities for the Phillies and the Phanatic for 16 years catapulted Raymond into the world of character branding. As the nation’s leading market consultant for character branding on and off the field, court, and in the board room, Raymond generates MoneyMakingFun™ for over 250 sports teams and companies across the nation.

The Raymond Entertainment Group is a marketing and entertainment company that specializes in providing creative branding programs to any business or organization looking for new and exciting marketing tools.

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All interested parties should visit Raymond Entertainment Group's job posting for job description, application requirements and audition details.