A new Blue Pony mascot will be working up crowds at Havre Blue Pony games this year thanks to the efforts of the Havre High Boosters Club.
The old Blue Pony is believed to be 12-13 years old and was becoming tattered, said Brenda Evans, Booster Club president.
Among other things, the tail was hanging off, she said.
So last year, the cheerleaders approached the Boosters, asking if they could work toward getting a new one.
The Blue Pony mascot whoops it up for the Ponies, performs antics for the crowd’s enjoyment and sometimes mixes it up with mascots from other schools.
The club spent money, raised by selling concession at sporting events and at the District 9-C games, to give fans a new mascot.
“It was costly,” said Evans. Not many companies are in the business of making mascots, and the costumes have to be individually designed and crafted, since there isn’t much demand for Blue Pony mascots.
“It is exciting being the first person to wear the new Blue Pony,” said Jamie Lieberg, the Havre High junior who was chosen to be this year’s Blue Pony.
Evans said most comments about the new Blue Pony have been positive, though some people, especially younger students, think he’s too intimidating.
The old Pony will be making some special guest appearances throughout the year, she predicted.
Evans said the new Pony has three portals of view — the forehead, the mouth and the eyes. Lieberg said that means it should be easier to navigate around while leading the crowd in cheers.
The new mascot has cooling packs and a fan to make it more comfortable during hot weather, though Lieberg said they can’t get the fans working and are working with the company that made it to fix things.
“It’s a lot of fun, but now it’s still hot,” he said.
Once adjusted to the new uniform, Lieberg says he hopes to do more dancing and jumping around to help boost enthusiasm in the crowd.
Lieberg decided to go after the job after a friend told him on Facebook they were looking for a new Pony mascot. His parents talked him into trying out.
He tried out and got the job.
If Lieberg can’t make it, Evans said, a cheerleader will fill in for him.
Evans said the new mascot is one of many projects the Boosters undertake.
They raise about $19,000 annually to be spent on special projects for extracurricular activities — not just sports, she emphasized, also but music and other activities.