SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Augustana University is bringing on a new mascot. Ace, the Auggie Doggie.
Ace is a 6-month-old English cream golden retriever and will be serving as a goodwill ambassador for Augustana, alongside Augustana’s other mascot, Ole the Viking. Since late July, Ace has been interacting and engaging with students and staff and attending various university and community events.
“This is a great way for Augustana to connect with the community in so many different ways. The students, faculty and alumni are all going to fall in love with this little guy and it’s going to be a great venture,” Ace’s lead sponsor and Nyberg’s Ace Owner and President Kevin Nyberg, an Augustana alumni from the class of 1979, said in a news release.
The suggestion of bringing back the Augie Doggie, a mascot that was once a fixture at Augustana basketball and football games, came from Augustana alumnus Wayne Petersen, a member of the Augustana Hockey Promotional Development & Fan Engagement Subcommittee. His position as the senior director of community relations & hockey partnerships for the Minnesota Wild includes overseeing the team’s Adopt-A-Dog program, which spurred the idea.
“I think it’s pretty cool. Obviously, Ace will not just be affiliated with the hockey team but will be affiliated with all the teams, all of campus. I think it’s awesome that Augie Doggie is making a comeback,” said Peterson.
Ace now goes to work with his handler, Augustana alumna and Chief of Staff Pamela Miller, several days a week.
“I envision that everyone in the AU community will get to know who Augie Doggie is and his name. I want students to recognize him when they see him from across campus and want to spend time with him,” said Miller.
To keep up with the #AugieDoggie, follow Ace on Facebook and Instagram @doggieofaugie.