‘Dora the Explorer’ turns the big 1-0!

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What do you get the girl who’s got the world in the palm of her animated hand for her birthday?

Though she doesn’t look a day older than 7, Dora Marquez -- the fearless adventurer who has children hypnotized every morning -- on Aug. 14 will celebrate 10 years of “Dora the Explorer.” It’s hard to remember when her big, brown eyes and bowl-style haircut weren’t part of America’s consciousness. Now the pint-sized Latina character seen in more than 100 countries and has been translated into 30 languages.


Such the overachiever, isn’t she?

“It’s really surprising to see how many kids love Dora,” said 14-year-old Caitlin Sanchez, an aspiring actress and singer from New Jersey who began voicing Dora in the show’s fifth season.

“I knew the show was popular when I first started, but I had no idea it was this huge. I see Dora everywhere -- EVERYWHERE. You can’t go outside without seeing a kid with a Dora backpack. It’s really cute,” Sanchez said.

To learn more about the global superstar, check out the Times’ Sunday Calendar cover story ... or get out your TV remote this weekend. To commemorate Dora’s decade of influence, Nickelodeon will air the TV movie “Dora’s Big Birthday Adventure,” featuring guest stars Rosie Perez, John Leguizamo and Hector Elizondo, on Sunday, Aug. 15 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. It will be followed by a 12-minute documentary-style tribute to the preschool icon.

If you want to keep your kiddies occupied for a bit, have them watch these previews:

-- Yvonne Villarreal

Video credit: Nickelodeon

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