NORTH LITTLE ROCK – The Arkansas Travelers introduced their final mascot for the upcoming 2014 baseball season today, Gary the Rabid Raccoon.
After a long search conducted by Arkansas’ minor league baseball club, the Travelers settled on three characters that grew up in Travelers lore.The first two mascots, Ace and Otey, were unveiled yesterday. Today in a special ceremony they introduced the captain of the new mascot team, Gary. All three mascots hold deep connections to the franchise they will now represent.
“We are so excited to introduce Gary to our fans. I think the kids will really love him,” Travelers general manager Phillip Wellman tells us. “The look on the little ones’ faces when they race around the bases in the 4th inning with Gary running behind them will be pure joy.”
The Travelers wanted to build characters with a rich narrative. Originally the club planned just one mascot, Ace, but they felt the narrative would be deeper with an interconnecting story between the three. The Travelers introduced Ace and Otey as best friends, while Otey the swamp opossum is the good luck charm of the team.
Gary is the raccoon ex “roommate” of Ace. Ace kicked him out when he contracted rabies from one of the local dogs that historically roamed North Little Rock. Gary is described as vengeful, psychopathic, and extremely jealous of opposing teams looking at his ex-roommate the wrong way. Gary is known to hide out in the opposing team’s dugout and bite their ankles during the game. Sometimes he sneaks over to the bullpen and will rip the arms off of any “Ace” pitcher.
Ace and Otey were designed in connection with Custom Characters of Glendale, California, a company who has a wide-array of character-building experience that includes work for The Walt Disney Company. The Travelers decided to add diversity by working with Tim Burton’s character studio for the design and story of Gary.