KSC celebrated Hootie’s 100th birthday as part of Alumni Weekend on Sunday Oct. 1.
Held in KSC’s Flag Room, the birthday ceremony had ice cream, a Hootie themed cake, and was packed with alumni young and old.
Students see Hootie everywhere at KSC. Whether he’s walking down Appian Way or cheering on a game, he’s an active member of the Keene State community. When Hootie is seen, something is happening on campus.
KSC’s president Melinda Treadwell recognizes the importance of having Hootie around campus.“The owl came from early educators as a symbol of learning,” she stated. As the physical mascot appears as more of a sporty owl, its origins and its print as the academic owl serve to remind students of their own wisdom. Treadwell added Hootie transitioned from an academic owl to a sporty owl, she “remembers Hootie cheering me on when I was an athlete. Today, Hootie represents a joyful place and serves as a good anchoring point for students, something that they can get excited about.”
However, as much as we see Hootie today, he wasn’t always around so much. Alumnus Mike Mahor, class of 1973, notes that Hootie wasn’t as big of a thing when he attended Keene State. “You didn’t really see a Hootie at the games, and certainly not walking around campus. The most you would see him is printed in the Equinox,” he stated.
Today, no matter what event is being held, you can find Hootie there. While he may not have been around in his earlier years, he is a staple to life at KSC.
Sonny DeFilippo can be contacted at