December 6, 2013
‘KOMAK’ TO CHEER ON CANADA’S ATHLETES IN SOCHI
The Canadian Olympic Committee officially unveils the Canadian Olympic Team Mascot in Hamilton.
TORONTO – Today, the Canadian Olympic Committee launched its Olympic Team Mascot, “Komak” who will be attending his first Olympic Winter Games in Sochi. Komak, the patriotic moose and Canada’s official Olympic mascot made public appearances at St. Lawrence Catholic Elementary School and Gore Park in Hamilton, Ontario, where he was dressed in our nation’s traditional red and white kit, and his antlers shaped to mirror the map of Canada. He was joined by Cheryl Pounder, two-time Olympic medallist (Ice Hockey); Sami Jo Small, Salt Lake City 2002 Olympic gold medallist (Ice Hockey); and Jason Burnett, Beijing 2008 Olympic silver medallist (Trampoline).
During his day-long visit in Hamilton, Komak met with hundreds of children and helped Bob Bratina, Mayor of Hamilton, flick on the lights at the city’s “Tree of Hope” Lighting Ceremony presented by the City of Hamilton in partnership with CHML and the Downtown Business Improvement Association. Reporters caught up with Komak who was eager to answer questions and meet with fans.
“I am so proud to be the official Canadian Olympic Team Mascot,” said Komak, Olympic Team Mascot. “I can’t wait to cheer on all our athletes, meet other Canadians and high five as many kids as possible.”
Komak was born in Ontario’s Algonquin Park but loves travelling the provinces to meet Canadians from coast-to-coast-to-coast. As a moose, he is a strong swimmer and excels at open water swimming events. His other hobbies include pin trading, going to the Olympic Games, cheering on the Canadian Olympic Team and learning new sports.
“The name Komak came from various elements of our rich Canadian Heritage,” said Derek Kent, Chief Marketing Officer, Canadian Olympic Committee. “He is the Canadian Olympic Team’s biggest booster and fan. Our goal is that he will inspire Canadian kids across the country to get active and get behind the team.”
“Komak is a true representation of the Canadian Olympic spirit and the values of Excellence, Friendship and Respect,” said Steve Podborski, Chef de Mission for Canada’s Olympic Team in Sochi. “His eagerness and youthful personality will be fantastic assets to the Canadian contingent heading to Russia next February. I know adults and children alike will welcome him with open arms.”
Earlier in the day, Komak, Pounder, Small and Burnett attended an assembly held at St. Lawrence Catholic Elementary School in the city’s north end, where the Canadian Olympic School Program (COSP) was shared with students and staff. The COSP provides educators with values-based resources that celebrate the Olympic Movement here in Canada and worldwide. Resources are available at www.olympic.ca/education.
“As Olympians, we often have the privilege of meeting children and fans from many parts of the country, but today was unlike any other day for me,” said Burnett. “The joy and excitement displayed by the kids at St. Lawrence was truly incredible to see. They reminded me of just how powerful the Olympic movement can be.”
“Seeing the reaction on the faces of our students this afternoon was absolutely wonderful,” said Michael Goffredo, Principal at St. Lawrence Catholic Elementary School. “To have our school chosen as the first place in Canada to see and meet one of Canada’s enduring symbol at the upcoming Olympic Games is a true honour. I know our students will remember this moment for a long time.”
“Today was an absolute treat for our community. I am so happy and proud that Hamilton was included, in such a unique way, in the buzz being created in the lead up to the Sochi Games,” added Mayor Bratina.
Komak will now embark on a thrilling journey across the country, visiting fans and friends in communities all over Canada. On his travels, his mission is to share his story with as many fellow Canadians as possible at schools, hospitals and local community events. Fans of Komak will be able to see and hear much more from him, as he just opened his own Twitter account @Komak and plans to be a regular contributor on www.olympic.ca.
There are also plans to release Komak-themed merchandise in the near future. He will act as the Team’s brand promoter, an ambassador to the Canadian Olympic School Program and a Games and events attendee.
Canadian Olympic Committee Media Office:
Luc Beaudin, Coordinator, Communications and Media Relations
Jane Almeida, Manager, Media Relations
Tel: 416-324-4120 / Cell: 416-540-1788