FETCH!™ with Ruff Ruffman Unleashed on the Web on PBS KIDS GO!

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Watch the first episode of FETCH! with Ruff Ruffman -- part game show, part reality TV, and part spoof -- online at http://pbskidsgo.org/fetch beginning May 22. The series, targeting six- to ten-year-olds, mixes unscripted live-action with animation, and breaks the mold with its educational and comical take on one of America's most popular television genres.

Part game show, part reality TV, and part spoof, FETCH! with Ruff Ruffman features real kids, real challenges, real science, and an unreal animated host -- a dog named Ruff Ruffman. The series mixes unscripted live-action with animation, and breaks the mold with its educational and comical take on one of America's most popular television genres. Online, FETCH!’s Web site extends the impact of FETCH!, offering viewers the opportunity to play along with the show, even after the TV is turned off.

Beginning May 22nd, for one week only, the first episode of FETCH! is available as a download. Catch this sneak peek a full week before the FETCH! television premiere. The episode will remain on the site in streaming, chapterized segments for an additional four weeks.

The star and producer of FETCH! is Ruff, a slightly neurotic yet lovable and charismatic canine, who runs the show from his state-of-the-art headquarters--otherwise known as his doghouse. Interacting with the animated Ruff, is a live-action cast of six 'tweenage' contestants -- Julia, Khalil, Anna, Brian, Noah, and Taylor. Targeting six- to ten-year-olds, each episode follows one or more of the kids as they embark on mystery assignments, concocted by Ruff, to test their determination, their daring, and their intellect.

The FETCH! Web site lets kids follow the show, play games and learn cool science. They can even register with the site to save their scores, win downloadable prizes and travel as a member between one PBS KIDS GO! site and another.

The games cover science concepts from biological, earth, physical, and engineering sciences. They also encourage kids to assume the role of scientist using science process skills, logical thought, memory, hypothesis testing and keen attention to details. Additional games will be added mid-June.

“Link-o-Vision” challenges players to link different animals together according to their shared attributes with regard to their diet, behaviors, physical traits and environments.

“Dog Ears” requires players to decode audio clues to decipher the five passwords for Ruff's safe using the code invented by Ruff (which he's forgotten). Each letter on the keyboard represents a different sound. Game play encourages listening, paying close attention, and note taking.

“Dog Pound” is a fast-paced, “whack-a-mole” style science quiz. And if kids don't know a particular answer first time around, repeat-play helps them learn.

The MY SHOW section invites visitors to “Meet the Contestants,” track the “TV Challenges” and current scores, look at candid shots of Ruff and the contestants, get the behind-the-scenes “Scoop” from Ruff, take a virtual tour “Inside Studio G,” and test their knowledge of fascinating facts about the contestants in “Fetcher 101.”

FETCH! is the first PBS KIDS GO! Web site to employ a new personalization feature. At G Team Central (the hip alias for Studio G) kids can sign up as members to earn points, win prizes, receive messages from Ruff, and customize their Web experience across all participating PBS KIDS GO! sites.

FETCH! on the Web includes a reference section for teachers, parents, and caregivers to access and download a range of background information and suggestions for activities with children, recommended books and links. In addition, the series will also have an extensive outreach initiative--designed to expand on the show's three science themes: animals, air and space, and invention.

FETCH! is produced by WGBH Boston and will premiere 20 half-hour episodes on PBS KIDS GO!, beginning with a mini marathon of four "back-to-back" shows on Memorial Day -- May 29, 2006 (check local listings).

FETCH! with Ruff Ruffman is produced by WGBH Boston with animation by Global Mechanic. The executive producer for the series is Kate Taylor and the senior producer is Kathy Shugrue. Major funding for FETCH! is provided by the National Science Foundation and public television viewers. Additional funding is provided by The Arthur Vining Davis Foundations. Corporate funding is provided by Arby’s and Greendog(R).

WGBH Boston is America's preeminent public broadcasting station. It produces one-third of PBS's primetime lineup, including some of television's best-known lifestyle shows and children's programs: Arthur, Between the Lions, Postcards from Buster, ZOOM, and Peep and the Big Wide World. Under the leadership of Vice President Brigid Sullivan, the WGBH children's lineup leads the field in educational multimedia (including the Web, broadband, and interactive television) and in technologies and services that make media accessible to people with disabilities. WGBH's current children's series have been recognized with some of the world's most prestigious awards, including fourteen Emmys, the George Foster Peabody award, three Prix Jeunesse awards, a BAFTA, and more than a dozen Parents' Choice awards. For more information, visit wgbh.org.

PBS KIDS and PBS KIDS GO! are committed to providing the highest quality non-commercial content and learning environment for children across the country. Providing age-appropriate, diverse programming for kids, PBS KIDS and PBS KIDS GO! programs consistently earn more prestigious awards than any other broadcast or cable network. Only PBS KIDS and PBS KIDS GO! have earned the unanimous endorsement of parents, children, industry leaders and teachers. With additional PBS resources to complement its programming, including PBS KIDS online (http://www.pbskids.org), PBS KIDS GO! online (http://www.pbskidsgo.org), PBS Parents (http://www.pbsparents.org), PBS TeacherSource (http://www.pbsteachersource.org), PBS Ready To Learn services and literacy events across the country, PBS is providing the tools necessary for positive child development. PBS is a nonprofit media enterprise owned and operated by the nation's 348 public television stations, serving nearly 90 million people each week and reaching 99% of American homes.

(c) 2006 WGBH Educational Foundation. All rights reserved. FETCH!, the characters and related indicia are trademarks of the WGBH Educational Foundation. All third party trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Used with permission.

Press Contact:

Lisa Cerqueira, WGBH, 617.300.5334

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Lisa Cerqueira
WGBH
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