Furry in the Field: the Mascot Experience

– – What’s a great job for a furry?–Why, mascotting, of course!  Not that every mascot is a furry…some mascots represent humans like warriors, archetypes,  or historical figures, and some are unidentifiable weird creatures that don’t exist in reality.  Additionally, not all those playing mascots are of the furry fandom, although working as a mascot or having contact with one may lead to further identification and empathy with animals.    Many mascots of high school, college, and professional teams are identifiable animals, and that’s where the fun as well as the challenge begins!

Now if you want to be a mascot, don’t think that there are oodles of opportunities; it’s probably easier to land a job on a professional sports team that to be a professional mascot!  There are only about 125 professional mascot positions available in the United States, so opportunities are few, with many interested applicants for the few available positions.   This doesn’t rule out college or high school mascotting practice, or for that matter, dressing as a cow to promote the local dairy!

A mascot is a furson of many talents, a kind of actor/actress and performance artist who really must learn to work it!   You’ve got to be able to kind of get into the skin that you’re wearing, both physically in terms of the performance demands and psychologically;  you have to learn the politics of working with individual coaches and advisers, and understand what behaviors are acceptable and expected and where and when to manifest them.    There are schools where the finer points of marketing a mascot are taught, and where aspiring mascots are helped with everything from costume design to performance tips.

There are horror stories, too…of mascots being abused by drunks or opposing fans, and of user-unfriendly costumes worn in earlier times.  Dry-clean only costumes if neglected could become infested with fleas, and when chemicals were put on to kill the fleas, fur could fall off!   Today’s costumes are lighter and even machine-washable, weighing in at around ten pounds.  Compensation is better, and fans appreciate, support, and when necessary defend their team’s mascots.

Even after you take it off, the costume stays with you, kinda like the “furry inside” experience many of us in the furry fandom can relate to.  Mascotting is really both a sport and a performance art, and it deserves more recognition and rewards…

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Explore posts in the same categories: animals, anthropomorphic, cool things, furries, furry, furry heroes

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2 Comments on “Furry in the Field: the Mascot Experience”

  1. carycomic Says:

    Hopefully, they’ll teach subsequent Bucky Bobcats that attacking rival college mascots, unprovoked, IS NOT AND NEVER WILL BE acceptable as a reason for being Ohio University’s mascot.


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