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March 26, 2013 10:35 PM

SF Sports Changes Pheasants Back To Canaries

Sioux Falls, SD

Back by popular demand... the Sioux Falls Canaries. After three years as the Pheasants, Sioux Falls Sports, the baseball team's ownership group, is heralding the return of the small yellow bird as their mascot.

It was switched to the Pheasants back in 2010 with mixed reviews, now it will go back to the moniker the club has used off and on since 1889.

"It's really coming off a year of really people walking up to me everywhere I've been like, 'why'd you change the name?' So I think it's going to be looked at very positive," SF Sports President and CEO Tom Garrity said.

"I think that when the fans come out and watch us they're going to identify with us even more just because of the simple name. It's who they expect to see on the baseball field, the Canaries," Canaries Manager Steve Shirley said.

Garrity took over the team last May after the name had already been changed. He hopes switching it back will re-ignite passion for the Canaries around town.

"Get everybody back engaged in it. Give the fans what they want so to speak and then just start building it brick by brick. Even though attendance went up, we still have a long way to go," Garrity said.

Attendance was up 72-percent in 2012. Garrity hopes Sioux Falls can be more like Fargo-Moorhead and Lincoln and pack the place more often.

"Sioux Falls should be able to do the exact same thing. The Canaries is a name that everybody wanted, is excited about. So we're going to throw that out there again and we're going to build on it and hopefully get more fans in the stands," Garrity said.

The Canaries home opener at the Birdcage is scheduled for may 17th.

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This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
A misspelling was corrected in this story.

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