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Olympic and Paralympic Shooting Mascots

Sonja Benčina

July 5, 2024

Ever since 1968 and 1980 respectively, Olympic and Paralympic Games had special ambassadors: their mascots. They embody the Olympic spirit, promote both the values of the games and the history and culture of the host city, as well as provide a more festive atmosphere to the event. Let’s take a look at the latest and the past three Olympic and Paralympic shooting mascots and see what they stand for.

Paris 2024

Representing an ideal rather than a (fictional or real) animal, the pair has a collective name, the Phryges, inspired by the Phrygian caps – worn as a sign of freedom and a symbol of France. Created by Gilles Deleris, each mascot has its own personality: the Olympic one is the smart one, while the Paralympic one is the spontaneous energy bomb.

The Paralympic and the Olympic shooting mascot for Paris 2024

Tokyo 2020

Created by Ryo Taniguchi, the mascot called Miraitowa was selected through a voting process by Japanese elementary school students. Its name is derived from the Japanese words “mirai” (future) and “towa” (eternity), while the design combines tradition with innovation. Its Paralympic counterpart is called Someity, a word deriving from “someiyoshino”, a popular cherry blossom variety, which is also supposed to sound like the English phrase “so mighty”.

The Paralympic and the Olympic shooting mascot for Tokyo 2020

Rio 2016

The two Rio 2016 mascots were designed by Birdo Produções. Vinicius, the Olympic mascot, represents a mix of various Brazilian animals. On the other hand, Tom, the Paralympic mascot, is a blend of different Brazilian plants. Their names were chosen through public voting and are the names of musicians Vinicius de Moraes and Antônio Carlos “Tom” Jobim, the co-writers of the song “The Girl from Ipanema”.

The Paralympic and the Olympic shooting mascot for Rio 2016

London 2012

Created by the agency Iris, the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic mascots are products of highly polished steel that reflects both the appearances and the personalities of the people they meet. Wenlock, the mascot of the Olympic Games, takes its name from the town of Much Wenlock, where in 1850 the Wenlock Olympian Society held its first Olympian Games, regarded as an inspiration for the modern Olympic games. Mandeville, the mascot of the Paralympic Games, is named after Stoke Mandeville Hospital, which, in 1948, organised the first Stoke Mandeville Games, considered to be the precursor to the Paralympics.

The Paralympic and the Olympic shooting mascot for London 2012

Do you have any of these mascots at home? Were you fortunate enough to win one together with an Olympic/Paralympic medal? Or are you right now doing whatever you can to get one as a symbol of your long-term commitment to shooting sport and a payoff for all your hard work? We wish the athletes, coaches and the support staff all the best for Paris 2024!

Sources:

https://olympics.com/en/olympic-games/olympic-mascots
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Phryges
https://www.paralympic.org/tokyo-2020/mascot
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vinicius_and_Tom
https://www.birdo.com.br/mascots-rio2016
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wenlock_and_Mandeville
https://www.franckcreative.com/london-2012-olympic-mascots-wenlock
https://www.franckcreative.com/work#/london-2012-olympic-mascots-mandeville/

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