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U.S. Marine Corps signed on as a first-time sponsor of the National Basketball Association's Hoop-It-Up 1997 National Tour. The corps also will be a sponsor of ESPN's inaugural Winter X Games at Big Bear Lake, Calif., next year. J. Walter Thompson USA, New York, coordinates.

Mother's Cookies this month launches the "Circus Animal Cookies Third-Color Election" sweepstakes promotion at supermarkets nationwide. Consumers are invited to cast ballots in favor of a blue, green, yellow or purple to join the traditional pink and white Circus Animal Cookies. Prizes include one expenses-paid trip for four to the White House, five computers and 2,000 bags of cookies featuring the winning color. In-store or mail-in votes will be taken through mid-November. The Market Connection, Newport Beach, Calif., coordinates.

Anheuser-Busch's Michelob has linked with Sharper Image for a holiday promotion offering buyers of specially marked Michelob 12-packs a mini-catalog of 12 Sharper Image items called "Gifts of the Season." Michelob buyers can order the items at a discount with a certificate; items include a Swiss Army watch and a pair of focus-free binoculars. The Waylon Co., St. Louis, coordinates.

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