By Pablo Sanchez
Hutchinson Community College’s mascot, Duke the Dragon, delights during home games at Gowans Stadium and the Sports Arena.
But who exactly is Duke and why do the fans love him so much?
Here is an exclusive Q&A with Duke himself. No, he does not reveal who the person behind the costume is.
Hutchinson Collegian: How much does he like interacting with the fans?
Duke the Dragon: How much do I like it? I love it and I’m really good at it. I feel like I bring Duke to life and feels like the complete package. I do love the little ones. I like to get them involved as well as the older fans as well.
HC: Do any of the kids get scared sometimes?
DD: Oh yes, it is normally one or other. They are super excited to see me or they get terrified.
HC: Was there any mishaps that happened during the game?
DD: I don’t think so. I get my tailed tugged on quite a bit, and I get chased around a bit as well, but I enjoy it.
HC: How much preparation do you go through typically?
DD: It’s not too much. I’m really good at my job, I get to games early, and it takes a minute to get the suit on, and sometimes for the pink outfit game, I had to re-change my clothes, and for football to basketball. As far as that, it takes a bit of time.
HC: Do you know how hot it gets in the suit?
DD: It get’s extremely hot, and I’ll come out drenched and I’ll have to keep it cleaned and it smelling good is a task for sure. It is extremely hot, especially for football games, and it is pretty rough.
HC: Is there something in the suit that can keep you cool?
DD: I use water inside in the suit, and it is ventilated as much as possible to make it comfortable.
HC: Was there any funny moments that happened with the kids?
DD: There was an incident a couple weeks ago where I had to lock myself in the bathroom from the tugging kids that were happy to see me that night.