Posted: 7:33 p.m. Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Idlewild closes Mister Rogers Neighborhood of Make Believe ride to bring Daniel Tiger to park

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LIGONIER, Pa. —

The Fred Rogers Company and Idlewild and SoakZone announced Wednesday that they are teaming up to bring the popular children’s character, Daniel Tiger, to the Ligonier amusement park.  The main character from the award-winning animated preschool series "Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood" on PBS KIDS, Daniel Tiger will appear at the park daily during the 2014 summer season.

"Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood continues the legacy of Fred Rogers in such an attractive and innovative way," says Brandon Leonatti, general manager of Idlewild & SoakZone.  "The program has won two Parent's Choice Awards and is in the top level of all children's shows on the air today. We feel that it is the perfect fit for the children who visit our park, and their parents who grew up watching the original series."

"We're excited to continue our long-standing relationship with Idlewild in bringing wholesome family entertainment and experiences to its visitors," said Bill Isler, president of the Fred Rogers Company. Also remarking, "'Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood' is the first TV series inspired by the original 'Mister Rogers' Neighborhood,' and we're thrilled that Idlewild will be the first amusement park to introduce the characters and imagination of Fred Rogers to the next generation of young children and their parents through Daniel Tiger."

The two companies previously partnered in 1989, developing a life-size trolley ride that took visitors to the "Neighborhood of Make-Believe."  The trolley ride concluded its 25-year operation at the end of the 2013 season. 

In 2014, this area will serve as the location for daily Daniel Tiger meet and greets and photo opportunities. A new Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood-themed attraction is being planned for 2015 at the same location, along with a new, live-action show featuring Daniel Tiger and other characters from "Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood."

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