List of Olympic mascots

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Olympic mascot)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The Olympic mascots are fictional characters, usually an animal native to the area or human figures, who represent the cultural heritage of the place where the Olympic and Paralympic Games are taking place. The mascots are often used to help market the Olympic Games to a younger audience, in particular toddlers and children. Ever since the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble, France, the Olympic Games have always had a mascot. The first major mascot in the Summer Olympic Games was Misha in the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. Starting with the 2010 Vancouver mascots, the Olympic and Paralympic mascots have been presented together.


The first Olympic mascot was born at the Grenoble Olympic Games in 1968. It was named "Schuss" and it was a little man on skis, designed in an abstract form and painted in the colors of France: blue, red and white.[1] However, the first official Olympic mascot appeared in the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich. It was Waldi, a Dachshund dog, a popular breed in Bavaria and it represented the attributes required for athletes – resistance, tenacity and agility. On it we can see three of the colors of the Olympic flag (blue, yellow, green).[1][2][3]

The success of those first mascots helped the idea of a mascot become a symbol of the Olympic Games and developed into an institution. Mascots are very popular and despite the importance of the message they convey, they are designed in simple manner with bright, happy colors appropriate for the ‘festive’ atmosphere of the Olympic Games.

The mascots for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, were Phevos and Athena, two dolls inspired by a bell-shaped archaic sculpture that is on display at the National Archaeological Museum of Athens. In ancient times, these dolls, the ‘daidala’, as they were called, were also items of worship as well as toys. Phevos and Athena are brother and sister and so they symbolize the joy of play and the values of Olympism. The choice of a brother and sister was purposely made to promote the values of equality and brotherhood.

Olympic mascots[edit]

Games City Mascot Character Designer Significance Photograph
1968 Winter Olympics Grenoble Schuss Stylized skier Mme Lafargue (unofficial)
1972 Summer Olympics Munich Waldi Dachshund dog Otl Aicher A popular breed in Bavaria, it represented the attributes required for athletes – resistance, tenacity and agility.
1976 Winter Olympics Innsbruck Schneemann Snowman Walter Pötsch It represents the Games of Simplicity.
1976 Summer Olympics Montreal Amik Beaver Yvon Laroche,
Pierre-Yves Pelletier,
Guy St-Arnaud and
George Huel
One of the national symbols of Canada.
1980 Winter Olympics Lake Placid Roni Raccoon Donald Moss Its face design resembles the hat and goggles used by competitors. Named for the Adirondack mountain range.
1980 Summer Olympics Moscow Misha Bear cub Victor Chizhikov The bear was the national symbol of the Soviet Union. 1980 USSR stamp Olympic mascot.jpg
1984 Winter Olympics Sarajevo Vučko Little wolf Joze Trobec Symbolizing the desire of humans to befriend animals. According to the IOC, it helped change the common perception in the region of wolves as frightening and blood-thirsty.[citation needed]
1984 Summer Olympics Los Angeles Sam Bald eagle Robert Moore
The Walt Disney Company)
The symbol of the United States.
1988 Winter Olympics Calgary Hidy and Howdy Two polar bears Sheila Scott Both represent Western Canadian hospitality.
1988 Summer Olympics Seoul Hodori Tiger cub Hyun Kim Common in Korean legends. XX1088 - Seoul Paralympic Games Seoul City Shots - 4 of 12 - Scan.jpg
1992 Winter Olympics Albertville Magique Man-star/snow imp Philippe Mairesse
1992 Summer Olympics Barcelona Cobi A Catalan sheepdog Javier Mariscal Drawn in avant-garde, cubist style
1994 Winter Olympics Lillehammer Håkon and Kristin Two Norwegian children Both are dressed in Viking clothes. First mascots to be human figures.
1996 Summer Olympics Atlanta Izzy An abstract figure (an alien) John Ryan The first computer-generated mascot.
1998 Winter Olympics Nagano The Snowlets:
Sukki, Nokki, Lekki and Tsukki
Four owls Representing the four major islands of Japan. The first syllable of each name combines phonetically to create the word "Snowlets".
2000 Summer Olympics Sydney Olly
(from "Olympic")
Kookaburra Jozef Szekeres, Matthew Hatton Representing the Olympic spirit of generosity.
(from "Sydney")
Platypus Representing the environment and energy of the people of Australia.
(from "Millennium")
Echidna Representing the Millennium. All three mascots are common wild animals found in Australia.
2002 Winter Olympics Salt Lake City Powder
(a.k.a. Swifter)
Snowshoe hare Steve Small,
Landor Associates
and Publicis[4]
All three mascots are indigenous animals of the U.S. state of Utah, and are named after natural resources important to the state's economy. These animals are major characters in the legends of local American Indians, and these legends are reflected in the story of each mascot. To remind them of this heritage, all mascots wear a charm around their neck with a petroglyph image.[5]
(a.k.a. Higher)
(a.k.a. Stronger)
American black bear
2004 Summer Olympics Athens Athena and Phevos Brother and sister Spyros Gogos Two modern children resembling ancient Greek dolls.
2006 Winter Olympics Turin Neve and Gliz A humanized snowball and ice cube Pedro Albuquerque "Snow and Ice". Neve ("Snow" in Italian) is a humanized female snowball that wears red and represents "softness, friendship and elegance." Gliz (a shortened form of Ghiaccio, "Ice" in Italian) is a humanized male ice cube who wears blue and represents "enthusiasm and joy." Neve and Gliz.jpg
2008 Summer Olympics Beijing The Fuwa:
Beibei, Jingjing, Huanhuan, Yingying, Nini
Fish, giant panda, Olympic Flame, Tibetan antelope, swallow Han Meilin The five names form the Chinese phrase "Beijing huan ying ni" (北京欢迎你), which means "Beijing welcomes you". Each representing an Olympic ring and Feng Shui element. Stuffy olympics (2631486904).jpg
2010 Winter Olympics Vancouver Miga Mythical sea bear Meomi Design
(a group of
Vicki Wong and
Michael Murphy)
Part orca and part kermode bear Miga (mascot).jpg
Quatchi A sasquatch From Canadian mythology Quatchi (mascot).jpg
Mukmuk A Vancouver Island marmot Not an official mascot, but their designated "sidekick".
2012 Summer Olympics London Wenlock[6] Drops of steel with cameras for eyes. Iris[7] Named after the village of Much Wenlock in Shropshire – which hosted a precursor to the modern Olympic Games in the 19th century. It represents the UK's start of the Industrial Revolution. Olympic mascots (cropped).jpg
2014 Winter Olympics Sochi Bely Mishka (Polar Bear), Snow Leopard (leopard), Zaika (the dore hare) Silvia Petrova, Vadim Pak, Oleg Serdechny First mascots decided by popular vote. Stamps of Russia 2012 No 1559-61 Mascots 2014 Winter Olympics.jpg
2016 Summer Olympics Rio de Janeiro Vinicius An animal representing all Brazilian mammals Luciana Eguti and Paulo Muppet Inspired by Brazilian fauna. Named after the poet and bossa nova composer Vinicius de Moraes decided by popular vote.

Parque Olímpico da Barra da Tijuca em 2015 01.jpg

2018 Winter Olympics Pyeongchang Soohorang A white tiger MASS C&G A white tiger. The tiger is an animal closely related to Korean mythology, and is a symbol of trust, strength, and protection. 2018 Winter Olympic Mascot Soohorang.jpg
2020 Summer Olympics Tokyo ??? A figure with blue chequered patterns from the official emblem Ryo Taniguchi A superhero-inspired character that embodies both old tradition and new innovation. Name to be revealed in the Summer of 2018.
2022 Winter Olympics Beijing Will be unveiled in 2020 TBA TBA
2024 Summer Olympics Paris Will be unveiled in 2022 TBA TBA
2026 Winter Olympics TBA Will be unveiled in 2024 TBA TBA
2028 Summer Olympics Los Angeles Will be unveiled in 2026 TBA TBA

Youth Olympic mascots[edit]

Games City Mascot Character Designer Significance Picture
2010 Summer Youth Olympics Singapore Lyo and Merly Red male lion (Lyo), Blue female merlion (Merly) Cubix International The two characters are an allusion to the "Lion City" label of Singapore, and the Merlion, a national symbol of Singapore, respectively.
2012 Winter Youth Olympics Innsbruck Yoggl Alpine Chamois Florencia Demaría and Luis Andrés Abbiati of Argentina Yoggl represents the character of the host city of these games[8] Yoggl - Gala Nacht des Sports 2011.jpg
2014 Summer Youth Olympics Nanjing LeLe(砳砳)[9] Rainflower Stone/Yuhua Stone (雨花石) LeLe is inspired by a unique natural feature of the host city known as the "Rain-Flower Pebble" (also translated as "Riverstone"). The design of the mascot takes the typical shape and appearance of this stone but in a creative and artistic way, highlighting the colours from the emblem’s palette. The word ‘lele’ represents the sound of stones colliding together and is pronounced like the Chinese word meaning happiness or joy.
2016 Winter Youth Olympics Lillehammer Sjogg Lynx Line Ansethmoen
2018 Summer Youth Olympics Buenos Aires Pandi Jaguar Human Full Agency
2020 Winter Youth Olympics Lausanne TBA TBA TBA

See also[edit]



  1. ^ a b "History of Olympic Mascots 1968–2014 – Photos & Origins". Retrieved 2015-10-22. 
  2. ^ "Olympic Games Mascots". Retrieved 2015-10-22. 
  3. ^ "Ολυμπιακές Μασκότ Χειμερινοί Αγώνες – Athens Info Guide". Retrieved 2015-10-22. 
  4. ^ Utah Travel Industry. "2002 Winter Olympics: Emblems and Mascots". Archived from the original on 21 November 2010. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  5. ^ Salt Lake Organizing Committee (2001). Reach: An Educators Guide to the Olympic Winter Games and Paralympic Winter Games of 2002. p. 16. Retrieved 20 October 2010. 
  6. ^ Farquhar, Gordon (19 May 2010). "BBC Sport – London 2012 unveils Games mascots Wenlock and Mandeville". BBC Online. BBC Online. Retrieved 19 May 2010. 
  7. ^ "2012 London Mascots launched to the World". Retrieved 21 October 2015. 
  8. ^ "Olympic News – Official Source of Olympic News |". Retrieved 2015-10-22. 
  9. ^ "Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games Mascot Unveiled". Retrieved 2015-10-22. 

External links[edit]