There’s a new bear in Saanich. Actually, he might be the only bear in Saanich, and he lives at Pearkes Arena.
Bauer the Brave is here to cheer all Saanich Braves junior B hockey games at the team’s home rink, Pearkes Arena, as well as the club’s many events at Pearkes and other community events in and around Saanich.
He debuted at the Braves’ first two games of the season where fans voted for the name Bauer in overwhelming majority (Jojo and Boomer were also suggested).
“We decided getting a mascot was something we wanted to do because we have a lot of minor hockey kids at the games, especially little kids,” said Braves program operator Laura Pelletier. “Pearkes is also a rec centre with a lot of minor games and youth skating that Bauer can be present for, and the kids already love him.”
Bauer joins the ranks of a mascot-rich region led by the bigger names, Marty the Marmot (Victoria Royals), Harvey the HarbourCat (Victoria HarbourCats), Rocky the Raccoon (Victoria Shamrocks) and Striker (Victoria Highlanders).
There’s also some more community-oriented mascots, such as Panorama’s Slider the Penguin, and Saanich Police’s Ace. The latter will likely run into Bauer on more than one occasion in Saanich.
Bauer’s name came from a long list of community suggestions posted to Facebook. Management then took their five favourites, from which Bauer was born.
Bauer may have the same name as the well-known hockey skate and equipment company, but he is his own bear, unrelated to the brand, Pelletier said.
“Bauer will be at all home games. We’re trying to get him into the community as much as we can, and with the players when they’re out at events,” Pelletier said. “We’re open to requests, it will just depend on availability.”
Email Pelletier at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Saanich Braves play most Friday nights, 6:30 p.m. at Pearkes. Visit saanichbraves.com for the team schedule.