- How well known is your mascot?
- How many sales are you losing because your mascot isn’t drawing them in?
- What is it costing you because you don’t know how to fully utilize your mascot?
- How do you know if you have the right Performer?
- What opportunities are you missing because your program isn’t at its full potential?
- As a Performer, what opportunities have you lost because you don’t know what a Team is looking for?
Mascot U is the networking and educational event for all things mascot. We’ve created an opportunity for Mascot Performers and Mascot Administrators to come and learn from the most successful Performers and Administrators in the industry!
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Watch for our Speaker Announcements! 10 Speakers are booked this year!
Tom Burgoyne, Philadelphia Phillies Phillie Phanatic
Tom Burgoyne is currently in his 32nd year as the mascot for the Philadelphia Phillies. You can find him performing at all Phillies home games and appearances that promotes the Phanatic’s unique brand of humor.
Aside from performing to small and big crowds, Tom is a co-author of several books. Pheel the Love – How the Most Powerful Force in the Universe Builds Great Companies is one of them which talks about how to lead with Phanatic-style love. Tom also wrote a children’s book series with 15 books sharing the journey of Phillie Phanatic.
In addition to all the books he has authored, he also wrote and directed a number of Phillie Phanatic movies – Channel Surfin’ Phanatic, The Phillie Phanatic Goes Hollywood, Time Travelin’ Phanatic and The Phillie Phanatic’s One-Man Band. Tom likes motivating and inspiring people to always follow their dreams.
Dan Meers, Kansas City Chiefs KC Wolf
Dan Meers is a mascot, motivational speaker, author, and a family man. He started his career way back in 1986 at the University of Missouri – Columbia as Truman Tiger which jump started his career in the scene. In 1989, he became the #1 college mascot at the National Collegiate Mascot Championships. The nearing end of his college years opened doors for him to be part of the professional level.
He became part of the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team as Fredbird. Not long after, he landed an offer in professional football and became KC Wolf, Kansas City Chiefs’ official mascot. In 2006, he was inducted in the National Mascot Hall of Fame. Until today, he brings entertainment across the United States both in and out of the KC Wolf figure. Out of the costume, he is known for his humorous and motivational speeches in any type of crowd making him an inspiration to all.
Jerry Burrell, Houston Rockets Turbo
Jerry L. Burrell had been with the Houston Rockets performing as Booster (for 4 seasons) and Turbo (for 9 seasons). He is the founder of Acrodunk, USA Dunk, The United States FreesTYle Dunk Federation and The Sport Of Thinking. Acrodunk was founded in 1994 which was known before as The High “Impact” Squad that aims to provide entertainment through variations of the slam dunk. They currently hold 4 Guinness World Records and, on a mission to inspire their audience, push them to break boundaries and show how it is to overcome obstacles. Since their founding year, Acrodunk has been performing in various events like NBA halftimes, festivals, theme parks and TV shows. They were also a semi-finalist on NBC’s America’s Got Talent which boosted their audience reach bringing them a step closer to providing leadership to the global community. Burrell wants to inspire young people to achieve greatness.
Dan Kilday, Cleveland Indians Slider
Dan is the original performer of the Cleveland Indians (MLB) mascot “Slider”. Dan’s debut as Slider was in 1990. The team is often asked what creature Slider is but truly, je is just one of a kind. He and Slider are celebrating their 31st season with the Cleveland Indians and Slider was inducted into the Mascot Hall Of Fame in 2008. Dan is still the main performer, creating and managing the brand of Slider. We know Dan’s insights will help your Team have a much better mascot program and help Mascot Performers become much better at their craft.
Todd Maroldo, Sacramento Kings Slamson
Todd Maroldo has been a performing character for over 24 years. He got his start at Virginia Tech, where he won the 1997 NCA Mascot Championship. He went on to perform as “ Sir Purr” for the NFL’s Carolina Panthers. After leaving the Panther’s, Todd pursued a career with the NBA’s Sacramento Kings, where he still performs as “Slamson.” Other featured performances throughout his career include “Chubby Checker” with the ECHL, “Sourdough Sam” with the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers, and stuntwork in small feature films and commercials. He looks forward to contributing to the growth and awareness of the Mascot Hall of Fame.
Rob Wicall, Spurs the Coyote
Over 20 years hidden behind the mask of the Coyote has given Rob a wealth of experience in connecting people and making moments for others. While wearing fake fur for a living, Rob also built a real estate profile that he still manages after his award winning mascot career. He has shared his “Fur losophy” through his TEDx talk in 2016, and continues to share through keynote speaking and consulting.
Rob is a powerhouse when it comes to the business world! He has purchased and sold numerous businesses, and recently began a Kickstarter that was more than 100% funded in less than 24 hours. With three highly lucrative kickstarters currently in the works, Rob has more than earned the designation “serial entrepreneur.”
More than just doing it himself, Rob has consulted with the Los Angeles Clippers, the Houston Texans, the American Red Cross, the San Antonio Zoo, University of Texas at Austin and the Texas Parks and Wildlife to bring greater success to their organizations.
Curtis Dvorak, Jaxson de Ville
Curtis is responsible for The NFL mascot rule in the game ops policies for the entire league. He is now television’s First Coast News Lifestyle and Entertainment reporter AND First Coast Living Host for 5.5 years.
Curtis is also the Shark Floor Coatings & Rhino Shield Jacksonville Brand Rep where he’s handling handling advertising and marketing.
Curtis was Hokie Bird for 2 years, placed 2nd in the 1995 UCA National Mascot Competition and won the 1996 NCA National Mascot Competition.
He then went on to be Jaxson De Ville for 19 years with the Jacksonville Jaguars of the NFL.
Brittany graduated with her Masters in Social work in 2014 , but decided to put that dream on hold for another dream, becoming a professional mascot!
Brittany started her mascot career as Easter Bunny for a park district over 12 years ago and has not looked back since.
She has worked for an independent baseball team, an MILB team and is currently working as a professional mascot for 3 years now in the NHL after attending MASCOTU 2018 in Houston.
Jack of All Trades, Master of Fun
Taylor Griswold is known as a “Jack of All Trades, Master of Fun.” He has a broad range of experience in mascot performance, motivational speaking, event production, acting, dance, circus arts, stunt work, and sports game operations.
He is a 2003 UCA National Champion mascot from Auburn University with over 25 years’ experience entertaining nationally. And he currently holds two Guinness World Records!
Taylor’s mascot career includes performing as JJ Jumper for NCAA Basketball, 6 years as “Zap” with the WNBA Detroit Shock, and 8 years as “Hooper” with the NBA Detroit Pistons. Taylor also founded and performed with the Pistons acrobatic dunk team “The Flight Crew.”
He’s has been featured on national TV shows like NBC “America’s Got Talent,” the CBS “Early Show,” ESPN SportsCenter, ABC National Radio, the NCAA Final Four, NBA All Star Games, and at sports arenas nationwide.
He used his well-rounded experience to create EPIC Entertainment in 2012, a Texas-based talent agency that produces over 800 events annually. Taylor is also the Executive Director of EPIC Outreach, a nonprofit focused on inspiring and educating children and families through interactive shows featuring EPIC’s mascot “Kazoo the Dragon” at schools, churches, and camps.
Carrie Norwood, Herky the Hawk
It was a sunny Mother’s Day when Sue MacDonald delivered a 10lb 4oz mush bear named Carrie. Les and Sue raised Carrie, and her three siblings, to be independent, compassionate, athletic go-getters. While attending the University of Iowa, a fraternity, whose members had portrayed the school mascot, Herky the Hawk, for about 40 years, got kicked off campus for doing stuff.
Never being one to do “normal” things, Carrie attempted to dance (more like stumble) her way into the mascot world by being one of the first women to portray Herky. Following graduation and three years of performing as Herky, she worked on-air for a Chicago radio station, but missed the mascot world. In 2003, Carrie learned of auditions for Tommy Hawk, the fairly new mascot for the Chicago Blackhawks, so she applied, auditioned and received the offer to perform as the bird. In 2005, the opportunity to perform as Southpaw, the mascot for the Chicago White Sox, became available, so she slides headfirst into that costume to portray the fuzzy green dude.
Carrie was the good luck charm the team needed as she single-handedly carried the team to a MLB World Series win a few months later. She stayed with the White Sox until 2016, when a position at the greatest non-profit on the planet, USO Illinois, became available. Carrie came out of mascot retirement in 2019 to performed as the Chicago land Speedway’s mascot for their big NASCAR race, and as a banjo-playing alligator for an episode of “Chicago Fire.”