Thursday, November 6, 2008

Flavorful Restaurant Celebration

IHOP’s Most Valuable Pancake Butters up Baseball Fans

For half a century, the International House of Pancakes has been stacking them tall or stacking them short. To celebrate its 50th anniversary, the popular breakfast chain has hit the road. From May to September, “IHOP’s Discover America Road Tour” will hit 61 Minor League Baseball games in 27 cities across 8,500 miles. The trip will not only promote IHOP’s golden anniversary, but also its nine new pancake flavors.

The Most Valuable Pancake (MVP) mascot will entertain the crowd at each game and hand out collector’s cards and T-shirts. All baseball fans receive the cards when entering the stadiums; they include information about the new “Discover America Pancakes” and a buy-one-get-one-free offer.

Fans get the chance to win a T-shirt, which bears the chain’s 50th anniversary logo on the front and the cities the tour visited on the back, by interacting with the MVP and participating in games. “The promotional aspects, particularly the baseball cards, help generate additional awareness before and during the games,” says Jennifer Pendergrass, communications manager at IHOP.

Consumers can also participate online at Here, they can enter the “Discover America Sweepstakes” and vote for their favorite new pancake flavor and answer state-themed trivia questions for a chance to win prizes. Grand-prize winners get a trip to Chicago, New York or Los Angeles. Other prizes include a $50 IHOP gift card redeemable at any of the 1,300-plus participating IHOP locations and baseball memorabilia contributed by the minor league ball clubs. The contest ends September 7.

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