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Build-A-Bear Workshop Announces Partnership with the National Children's Cancer Society to Fight Children's Cancer.

Business/Entertainment/Health Writers

NOTE TO MEDIA: Photo available.

ST. LOUIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 14, 2002

Build-A-Bear Workshop(R) announced a partnership with The National Children's Cancer Society, Inc. (N.C.C.S.) today and unveiled Nikki's Bear(TM), a special teddy bear to be sold in all Build-A-Bear Workshop locations across the country to help fight children's cancer. The bear will be available in all of the company's over 100 stores and it's website beginning January 2003. $1 of each bear will be donated to The National Children's Cancer Society. The program to support N.C.C.S. was announced at the charity's 2002 International Humanitarian Award Dinner where former mayor of New York City, Rudolph Giuliani was the award recipient. Giuliani was presented with the first Nikki's Bear(TM) as a part of the evening's program.

Nikki's Bear(TM) is named in memory of Nikki Giampolo, a 14-year-old honors student, musician and top competitive swimmer from Connecticut who died this past January after battling a rare form of bone cancer for six months. Nikki reached out to Build-A-Bear Workshop by visiting and making bears for her fellow patients and friends. It was her wish that Build-A-Bear Workshop create a bear that could benefit the cause of children's cancer.

The bear was a natural extension of the company's commitment to children, according to Build-A-Bear Workshop Chief Executive Bear Maxine Clark, "We are a company that cares about children, its just who we are. When Nikki's mom, Gail got in touch with me my first thought was that I wished I had known Nikki in person. Her passion to help others even though she was very sick herself was the inspiration for us to make this bear, and by creating Nikki's Bear and partnering with N.C.C.S., we hope to give Nikki and all the children like her a voice in the fight against children's cancer."

President and CEO of The National Children's Cancer Society, Mark Stolze noted that this is a very special partnership for the organization. "We know that Build-A-Bear Workshop is a company that is devoted to children everywhere and we are so pleased to be working with them on this program. Nikki's Bear(TM) symbolizes our organization's purpose to give our families strength and courage by helping their children maintain normal lives and what better way to remind us of this than with a teddy bear."

Nikki's mother, Gail Giampolo, said that having a bear named after her daughter is an appropriate tribute to her memory, "Nikki believed in living each day with hope and she had a courage that she gave those around her. Nikki's Bear(TM) is a way to give that hope to others and to send a message of support and encouragement to children with cancer everywhere."

Build-A-Bear Workshop(R) is an interactive, entertainment retailer that invites Guests to create their own customized stuffed animals. At end of 2001 the company operated 72 stores across the country and by end of 2002 will have over 100 locations in 33 states coast-to-coast. For more information visit the company's award winning web site, www.buildabear.com.

About The National Children's Cancer Society-

The National Children's Cancer Society is a not for profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for children with cancer and to reducing the risk of cancer by promoting children's health through financial and in-kind assistance. Since its inception in 1987, the N.C.C.S. has provided more than $25 million in direct financial assistance to over 9,500 children with cancer in the United States. N.C.C.S. provides advocacy, support services, education and prevention programs, N.C.C.S. has also distributed in excess of $77 million in donated pharmaceuticals and medical supplies to 37 facilities in 25 countries. Individuals interested in more information on the N.C.C.S. can contact Erica Conway at 314/241-1600, or visit the web site at www.children-cancer.org.

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Jun 14, 2002
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