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Pizza Patron is seeking to reverse the average 4 percent drop in sales it experiences during Lenten season each year by launching its "Pizzas de Cuaresma" campaign. The promotion features two "Lent friendly" pizzas -- the Spinach Clasico and La Vegetariana.

Pizza Patron's Spinach Clasico pizza is a blend of baby spinach and cheesy parmesan Alfredo sauce. La Vegetariana is a vegetable pizza with fresh-sliced onions, bell peppers, mushrooms and black olives made with crushed Roma tomato sauce marinated in Pizza Patron's secret blend of herbs and spices.

Both are large, family-sized pizzas and are available for $6.99 each for a limited time during Cuaresma, "Lent" in Spanish.

"The majority of our guests are Hispanic and prefer to speak Spanish in our restaurants, and a significant number of those are Catholic," said Andrew Gamm, brand director for Pizza Patron. "Cuaresma is an important time of year for our brand because it gives us the opportunity to demonstrate what makes Pizza Patron different from other pizza chains and it allows us to stay close to the heart of our heavily Catholic customer base."

According to the 2009 National Survey of Latinos by the Pew Hispanic Center, a majority (60 percent) of Hispanics identify themselves as Catholic and two-thirds (67 percent) of Spanish-dominant young Latinos say they are Catholic.

Pizza Patron has plans to build on the momentum gained during this promotion with three additional campaigns that reinforce the brand's commitment to its Hispanic roots. The first campaign is slated for late April and will celebrate the language that unifies most Hispanics.

The second campaign, scheduled for a July 4 launch, will honor the history of American immigration. The final campaign in October will promote community action and will feature Mexican pesos, putting a Latin twist on the company's annual fundraising efforts for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

"We are proud of our Latino roots and believe our brand stands for much more than low-price pizzas," Gamm said. "Our passion is to create an experience at Pizza Patron that exudes our unique Latin lifestyle and attitude."

Read more about marketing and branding initiatives.

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