Best of 2019 (Page 2)

The Best of 2019 Awards complete with seven categories. Congrats to all our winners.

Best Contest or On-field Promotion:

What promotion or contest is the most entertaining. For example, a “Chuck-a-puck” contest. This is a repeatable on-field or video promotion held in-game. Consider entertainment value, creativity, local connections, sponsorship possibilities, cost, and repeat-ability.

Winner: Beat the Freeze (Atlanta Braves)

Track Star Nidel Talton’s masked Super Hero act continues to streak past the competition. Not only on the warning track at Turner Field, but in the Best of 2019 Awards on One panelist proclaimed this contest was “an instant classic, and remains so.”

Another panelist noted a local connection in Atlanta who always talks about the promotion. “Anytime you have fans EXCITED about an in-game promotion, you have a winner.”

And Atlanta does have a winner.

Nipping at the heels this year were the Gwinnett Stripers “Beat the Fridge” and a Kids race for the Hartford Yard Goats.  Live racing remains a head-turning production across sports, fueled by the huge success by the Atlanta Braves and the speedy Talton.

Past Winners:

Listen to the Best of 2019 Audio Round Table discussing all the categories and winners with out panel of Jon Cudo, Amanda Greco, Pat Walker and Benjamin Hill. – December 2019 Party in the Back Podcast

Also on

See The Store at where we have many turn-key sponsor-friendly promotions and game entertainment resources available, like Build-a-Burger, Parachute Drops, Chuck-a-Puck and the World’s Largest Cornhole Game.

Best Mascot:

A mascot whose work was creative and enthusiastic, serving as a valuable tool for their team and in their community. Consider ability to engage and entertain fans, create fresh innovative content, and create a multidimensional character who is effective in-game, in-community, online, and through social media. All sports team characters and college mascots are eligible.

Winner: Gritty (Philadelphia Flyers)

In just over one short year Gritty has gone from a potential disaster at launch to a mascot media darling. His social posts get massive national exposure and he’s (somehow) found a place under the staircase of Americana. His googley eyes and orange furry are everywhere, proving the skeptics wrong and the lovers of truly outside-the-box thinking right.

Panelists raved about Gritty calling him (and the team) “fearless” and another summarized by asking “Can you even remember life before Gritty?”.  Many comments noted Gritty’s mass success on social media that is untouched by other mascots.

Hundreds of animated gifs, custom hockey pads and even a prosthetic leg for a young fan.  This furball is everywhere in a way we have never seen. (Perhaps thankfully)

He even does gender reveals.

Gritty proved to be too much for the furry competition in 2019.

Also in discussion this year were Slugger (Portland Sea Dogs), The Coyote and three time defending champ Orlando Magic Mascot Stuff.

Past Winners: Plus is our value-added membership site. We are connecting sports professional at all level and across sports to enhance the value of our events.  Three times a month we gather for a hour long discussion on an industry topic with a special guest to share their insights. Leaders like Claire Czerniuk , Jonny Greco, Barry Anderson, Colleen Flynn, Rob Wicall, Todd Bosma, and Kari Norvell have discussed topics from dance teams to creating custom music. This month we feature a creative mascot session with Rance Ristau from the Spurs and getting your music on-brand with the LA Clippers.  Free One Month Trial is available now on PLUS.

Related articles

August 2018 Podcast

Cameron Hughes, Ben Hill and David Stogdill join the podcast. We look at contests and contestants, along with preparing them and prizing them for maximum effect. Stogdill talks about his new book on his mascot career.

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