It’s officially called the Summer Literacy Clinic, but there’s much more to it than one-on-one reading and tutoring. True, when you enter the library of Roberts PreK-8 School in the Syracuse City School District (SCSD), you see third- and fourth-grade…
Vote Now: Otto the Orange Competes to Be the Latest Mascot Hall of Fame Inductee
Syracuse University is home to many incredible legends who have been inducted into various hall of fames, including Dave Bing ’66, H’06; Jim Boeheim ’66, G’73; Jim Brown ’57; Eileen Collins ’78, H’01; Gary Gait ’91; Floyd Little ’67, H’16; Roy Simmons Jr. ’58 and Kathrine Switzer ’68, G’72, H’18, just to name a few. It should come as no surprise then that Syracuse’s own Otto the Orange is a contender for the Class of 2023’s Mascot Hall of Fame.
Beginning today, you can start casting your votes once per day for 14 days for our beloved Otto by visiting the Mascot Hall of Fame website. Voting ends on Saturday, May 27. Your vote can count for even more when you become a member of the Mascot Hall of Fame.
Otto is up against 17 other mascots, including eight from the major leagues, three from the minor leagues, five from the NCAA and one from an independent program. If accepted, Otto would be among the first 10 college mascots ever inducted and would join the following:
- YoUDee (University of Delaware)
- Smokey (University of Tennessee)
- Nittany Lion (Penn State University)
- Lil’ Red (University of Nebraska)
- Bucky Badger (University of Wisconsin)
- Brutus Buckeye (Ohio State University)
- Big Red (Western Kentucky University)
- Aubie (Auburn University)
Otto has some serious competition though, including familiar rivals from the Atlantic Coast Conference:
- Buzz (Georgia Tech)
- Rameses (University of North Carolina)
- The Blue Devil (Duke University)
Help Otto win by voting every day and encouraging other Orange fans to do the same. “No matter who you are—student, alum, staff or faculty member, community member, even if you have never seen Otto before—you can’t help but smile when you see that ball of Orange spirit,” says Shannon Andre, executive director of communications for Student Experience and former Otto during the Syracuse men’s basketball iconic six overtime game. “Otto brings such joy and positivity everywhere they go, and I don’t think there’s another mascot that has the same effect on people. And there’s certainly no other mascot built like Otto! Otto is truly one-of-a-kind and that’s why everyone should vote for Otto.”
Otto has brought spirit, pride and joy to not only the Syracuse University community since the early 1980s, but also the greater Central New York community. Just in the last year Otto has participated in 409 events on campus, 181 events within a 5-mile radius of campus and 73 events within a 30-mile radius and 92 events 30 miles or more away from campus. Sixteen percent of those events were in the Central New York community at places like the Rosamond Gifford Zoo.
“Having Otto attend our events adds another layer of excitement and surprise to an already fun-filled day. With their exuberant spirit and contagious grin, Otto has a big impact on our family-fun events,” says Heidi Strong, director of development for the zoo.
Mascot coach of the Otto program Julie Walas knows the work Otto puts in to celebrate with the Orange community every day.
“Otto’s been at graduations, move-ins and drop-offs, birthday parties, community events, playgrounds and parks,” Walas says. “Otto’s traveled the world to be with fans during their big moments—this gives the fans and the community a chance to thank and celebrate and recognize all the joy that Otto brings for each of us.”