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Sanrio kicks off Hello Kitty 50th anniversary celebrations in the US

Sanrio is to host a range of programmes across the year in the US for fans of Hello Kitty, marking the character’s 50th anniversary.

Activity will include an art exhibit in Los Angeles, original content on the Hello Kitty and Friends YouTube channel, exclusive collaborations, limited edition commemorative products, special appearances by Hello Kitty at major sporting events, new metaverse experiences in Roblox and celebrations in Hello Kitty Island Adventure on Apple Arcade.

Sanrio will also be opening several Hello Kitty Cafés across the US.

“An ambassador of friendship and kindness for the past 50 years, Hello Kitty has touched so many people globally and we want to share our appreciation for her fans by offering memorable Hello Kitty-inspired experiences – both IRL and digitally – all year long,” commented Craig Takiguchi, coo at Sanrio. “We look forward to commemorating this major milestone, while continuing to inspire people from around the world for the next 50 years with our vision of ‘One World, Connecting Smiles’.”

New content across YouTube, social media and in the digital gaming space will honour Hello Kitty’s milestone year. A new AR filter is available to fans on TikTok, featuring Hello Kitty dancing next to five popular landmarks in London, New York, Taiwan, Tokyo and Paris, each adorned with decorative and festive animations.

Within Roblox, the My Hello Kitty Café experience will offer new interactive features each month for players to embrace the cheerful spirit of the character, such as selecting from a range of Hello Kitty-inspired photo frames, dressing in Hello Kitty merchandise and accessories, and more surprises. Superfans will also have the chance to explore a virtual Hello Kitty environment on ZEPETO, an immersive avatar-based social universe, featuring a variety of engaging activities celebrating the icon.

Sanrio is also extending the celebration by creating a virtual Puroland experience, which is an extension of the IRL theme park in Japan, taking place now through 17 March. Fans can celebrate by exploring a variety of activities ranging from virtual parades to club events to performances by various artists. Access to the events varies and is available via VR headsets, gaming PCs or YouTube streaming.

Additionally, the Japan Society of Northern California (JSNC), known for its commitment to promoting understanding and friendship between the US and Japan, has presented Hello Kitty with the Cultural Ambassador Award, recognising her as an international symbol of peace and friendship.

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