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Nationwide "Imagination Celebrations" to Support Autism Speaks

Children's Entertainment Franchise Pump It Up Hosts July 24 Public Fundraiser at 150 Locations

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TEMPE, Ariz., July 10, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- When you see children across the country running around in sequin-filled princess dresses, pirate eye patches or superhero capes in mid-summer, it's not your imagination – but it is a nationwide "Imagination Celebration" fundraiser for Autism Speaks, hosted by children's entertainment franchise Pump It Up.

From 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on July 24, Pump It Up, "where your imagination comes to play," will open its doors to families at each of its 150 franchise locations nationwide for an "Imagination Celebration Great Open Jump." The event is open to the public with a suggested donation to Autism Speaks, the world's leading autism science and advocacy organization.

Just as each person's imagination is unique, Pump It Up locations will be hosting Imagination Celebrations with various themes including some of Pump It Up's popular party experiences and special events such as Pirate Quest and Superhero Training Camp Adventure Parties. Other events include: Glow parties – the lights are turned down and the fun is turned up, Halloween-themed Not So Scary Summer, Summer Luaus, Easter Egg Hunts and PumpJama – our spin on pajama parties.

"We've supported autism research and advocacy for the past several years with annual Great Open Jump fundraisers at our locations," said Pump It Up CEO Lee Knowlton. "This year, we're giving the events a new twist by tying in our imagination-based platform. The Imagination Celebration themes are designed to allow children to foster their creativity and be whoever or whatever they want to be while having fun at our indoor, inflatable play grounds."

Earlier this year, Pump It Up announced the launch of a proactive "Save Childhood, Support Imagination" campaign that urges families to commit to increased imaginative playtime at home and provides tools to help them accomplish this goal, including the Support Imagination blog. Pump It Up began its support of autism research and advocacy in 2007 after many of its locations began to notice a trend of families seeking out the sensory environment as a friendly and safe place for children on the autism spectrum to play. Since then, Pump It Up has forged a partnership with Autism Speaks and raised more than $75,000 to support the organization.

"We're thrilled to have Pump It Up's continued support of our organization," said Shawna Horn, Director of Corporate Relations for Autism Speaks. "This year's imagination-themed events will be a creative and fun way to raise money that will help us continue our research and advocacy on behalf of the millions of children and families affected by autism."

About Autism
Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders – autism spectrum disorders – caused by a combination of genes and environmental influences. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by social and behavioral challenges, as well as repetitive behaviors. An estimated 1 in 88 children in the United States is on the autism spectrum – a 1,000 percent increase in the past 40 years that is only partly explained by improved diagnosis.

About Pump It Up
The national leader in the children's entertainment category, Pump It Up is a 150-unit franchise specializing in private birthday parties and programs like field trips, camps, seasonal events, and Pop-In Playtime™ − an open to the public jump time offered for kids to engage in active play in a safe and controlled indoor environment.  Known by most parents as their "kids' favorite place," Pump It Up prides itself on offering a friendly, trained, safety-oriented staff committed to serving families in a fun stress-free environment. For your local Pump It Up locations, hours, and events, visit www.pumpitupparty.com.

About Autism Speaks
Autism Speaks is the world's leading autism science and advocacy organization. It is dedicated to funding research into the causes, prevention, treatments and a cure for autism; increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders; and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. Autism Speaks was founded in February 2005 by Suzanne and Bob Wright, the grandparents of a child with autism. Mr. Wright is the former vice chairman of General Electric and chief executive officer of NBC and NBC Universal. Since its inception, Autism Speaks has committed over $180 million to research and developing innovative resources for families. Each year Walk Now for Autism Speaks events are held in more than 95 cities across North America. To learn more about Autism Speaks, please visit www.autismspeaks.org.

Media Contact:

Sam Randall, Fishman Public Relations


srandall@fishmanpr.com, (847) 945-1300

SOURCE Pump It Up



RELATED LINKS
http://www.PumpItUpParty.com
http://www.autismspeaks.org

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