Fifteen years ago, the Jazz Bear approached Becky White and her Lehi High School Sports Marketing class to come up with a fun and exciting fundraiser for the Fireman and Friends for Kids and Bear Hugs Charity. This class was recognized as one of the most innovative sports marketing programs in the state. It provides high school students with opportunities in business sponsorship relations, event marketing, and game operations. Together, Jazz Bear and the Lehi Sports Marketing class created the Mascot Bowl. It has been a great success since its inception and has grown bigger and bigger. It is now a marquee community event for the city of Lehi.
Twelve years ago, on the day of the Mascot Bowl, I called Becky to see if there was anything she needed help with for the event and she said, “Actually, I’m in need of a referee! What do you say?” So I borrowed a shirt from a neighbor, found a whistle, and dressed up my son as my “mini-me” referee. My sons and I have been the referees ever since.
Three years ago, for a few different reasons, the group made an executive decision to move venues from Lehi High School to Skyridge High School. Mrs. White was now teaching the Sports Marketing class at Skyridge and the expansive grounds would accommodate many more spectators at the event. As many of you know, this move came with mixed reviews. Until that year, Lehi had been a one high school town and school unity could be felt up and down her streets. On game nights, everyone would put on their purple and cheer on the mighty Pioneers. Most of the community events centered around Lehi High School.
We knew that with a new high school the city would never be the same. There seemed to be some division forming in our great community. The Mascot Bowl had the potential of being a cause of tension. But, as I’ve attended the Mascot bowl these past three years at Skyridge, I’ve been so proud of how both schools and their supporters have embraced each other and the event. Both student councils and sports marketing teams have been involved in the event along with both cheerleading squads and other organizations. In fact, my favorite part of the night this year, was when both the Skyridge and Lehi High School drill teams performed TOGETHER on the field during one of the time-out breaks. My hats off to whoever planned that and made it happen.
May we all take note from these students and this wonderful event and realize that whether you bleed orange or purple, we all live in the wonderful city of Lehi and together we can create great things.