Boomer Honored With Prestigious ROSE Award
Official Press Release
March 12, 2014
Indiana Pacers mascot Boomer was honored Wednesday night with a prestigious ROSE Award from VisitIndy, the Indianapolis convention and tourism bureau.
The ROSE Awards, presented at the Indiana Roof ballroom, stand for Recognition of Service Excellence. The awards are given to those front-line personnel who serve in the hospitality and service industry. This year, the 23rd for the ROSE Awards, there were 85 nominees. A panel of judges selected Boomer as one of 11 ROSE Award recipients.
PHOTO GALLERY: Boomer in the Community
Boomer was presented with his ROSE Award by Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard before a crowd of nearly 700 that included Pacers Sports & Entertainment colleagues, Boomer’s wife, son and parents.
Boomer, while delighted with the award, honored the mascot code and had no comment.
While some might wonder about a sports team’s mascot’s role in the hospitality and service industry, judges looked beyond Boomer’s rafter-belaying, trampoline-jumping, kids-heads-rubbing, referee-helping, crowd-encouraging mascot to consider these qualifications:
- In nearly 17 seasons as Boomer, he has entertained more than 10 million fans at Pacers home games at Market Square Arena and Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
- Boomer makes more than 300 appearances a year.
- Boomer has represented Indianapolis and the Pacers in more than 21 countries.
- Boomer does several school appearances every week, focusing on varying topics such as anti-bullying, school-testing preparation, health and fitness promotion, anti-drug messages, the NBA Read-to-Achieve initiative. He does nearly 100 of these every year.
- Boomer makes regular visits to patients at the Roudebush Veterans Hospital, the Peyton Manning’s Children’s Hospital, St. Francis Hospital and Riley Children’s Hospital.
- Boomer performs chair aerobics at Nursing Homes and Senior Centers.
- Boomer participates in the Autism Walk, the Juvenile Diabetes Walk, School Walkathons, Back Pack distribution, Arthritis Walk, Paws in the Park (stressing the importance of pet adoption), blood drives, the TeamSmile Dental event for kids, Boy Scout Camp visits, Children’s Museum free health screenings for kids, Diabetes Run, David West Christmas Surprise, Breast Cancer Awareness Walk, Project Fit America events (dedication of playground equipment for working out at schools), Frankfort Health Fair, Noblesville Health Fair, Simon Youth Foundation events, the Kroger shoe donation to kids, the National Guard Christmas Party for the families of troops, Day Care centers, Indianapolis Zoo free public events, Sheltered Wings events, WTHR Coats for Kids, Military Family Event at Lucas Oil Raceway, Go Green Event, Veteran’s Day parade and Shop with a Cop.
- Boomer attends Camp Attebury to help welcome troops back to their families; he helps with food campaigns for Gleaner’s Food Bank, he’s involved in Pack the Pantries and Kids Against Hunger events, the Pacers “Come to Our House” Thanksgiving dinner and Second Helpings events.
- And Boomer helps the Indianapolis tourism effort ... he’s a regular at the conventions that come to the city, especially the national firefighters conference.
Said PS&E President Jim Morris in nominating Boomer, “He is an extraordinary candidate for inclusion among those who receive this special distinction. His is the longest tenure among those who serve in such a capacity for our local sports franchises and one of the longest of any pro sports team in America. Most of his appearances are accompanied by positive messages: eat healthy, stay in good physical shape, read books, study hard, be a friend and not a bully, just to name a few.”
Added Jamie Russell, the senior manager of game operations, “Boomer rarely says no to an appearance, which is why he does more than 300 appearances each year. Boomer always goes above and beyond. We are very fortunate to have him as an ambassador of our city.”
Boomer joins Tom Rutledge, Dave Tepee and Michele Hoosier of PS&E and William Coffey and Alvin Clark of Levy as ROSE recipients.
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