20 Former Olympics Mascots
Top 20 Former Olympics Mascots
Mascots are an embodiment of the spirit of the Olympics and their main role is welcoming athletes, fans and visitors to the Olympics games. Mascots spread the Olympics joy that is highlighted at each edition of the Olympics and also promotes the history and culture of the respective host city. It also gives the event a festive and carnival mood which is much needed by the athletes and fans alike. Over the years, we have seen various mascots used in both Summer and Winter Olympics games. These mascots are carefully curated and selected so that they can be the official representative of the Olympics edition that takes place. Below, we explore some of the past mascots that have been used before in past Olympics.
Shuss of the 1968 Winter Olympics
This mascot consisted of a little man on skis. The shape of the mascot general featured a children’s cartoon character wearing skis and Olympics rings on his head. Its colours were white, blue and red to represent the town of Grenoble, France where the Olympics were being held.
Waldi of the 1972 Summer Olympics
Waldi is touted as the first official mascot ever in the Olympics Summer games. Waldi was a popular breed of dog called dachshund, which is quite popular in Germany where the event was being held. The design was inspired by the core attributes held by athletes; tenacity, agility and resistance. It consisted of blue, yellow, green and orange colours
Amik of the 1976 Summer Olympics
Amik was the official 1976 Summer Olympics mascot. The mascot's name Amik means beaver in Algonquin which is a native language among the indigenous people living in Canada. The mascot consisted of a colourful rainbow stripe and was selected because of its perceived hard work and its strong association with Canada, the country where the games were being held
Misha of the 1980 Summer Olympics
Misha which was also known as Mishka was a Russian Bear Mascot used in the 1980 Summer Olympics. This mascot was very popular in Russia and appeared on several merchandise products and featured prominently during the opening ceremony and closing ceremony. It also had its own short animated film and went on to appear in the FIFA World Cup too.
Sam of the 1984 Summer Olympics
Sam the Olympic Eagle was the official Olympics mascot of the 1984 Summer Olympics held in Los Angeles, US. Sam was a bald eagle, the national bird of the United States of America, the host nation. It closely shared features and characteristics with Uncle Sam, another American symbol. He was also confused with Eagle Sam, another Disney mascot.
Hidy and Howdy of the 1988 Winter Olympics
Hidy and Howdy were two polar bears who were the first Olympics couple mascots. They were the official mascots for the 1988 Winter Olympics held in Calgary, Canada. They were also used as welcome signs located throughout the city of Calgary before they were retired to Canada Olympic Park.
Magique of the 1992 Winter Olympics
Magique (Magic in French) was a little imp in the shape of a star and a cube and was the official mascot for the 1992 Winter Olympics held in Albertville, France. Its colours were borrowed from the French flag with a red hat and a blue costume. Its star shape symbolized dreams and imagination. It was also the first non-animal mascot used in the Olympics since the 1976 Winter Olympics.
Izzy of the 1996 Summer Olympics
Izzy was the official mascot for the 1996 Summer Olympics held in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. He was initially known as Whatizit in the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain. The animated character did not represent any nationally significant animal or person (a departure from Olympics tradition) and was criticized as lacklustre and severely lacking in creativity. Izzy was featured in a video game before being retired permanently.
Sukki, Nokki, Lekki and Tsukki of the 1998 Winter Olympics
Sukki, Nokki, Lekki and Tsukki also known as Snowlets were the official 1998 Winter Olympics mascots. The event took place in Nagano, Japan. They collectively represented different elements: Sukki (fire), Nokki (air), Lekki (earth), Tsukki (water) and together they represented the four major islands of Japan. The four mascots were selected because they were snowy owls and owls are revered for their wisdom. The snowy part represented the Winter aspect of the competition and their number represented the years it takes to form an Olympiad.
Syd, Olly and Millie of the 2000 Summer Olympics
Syd, Olly and Millie were the official mascots for the 2000 Summer Olympics held in Sydney, Australia. They were named by Phillip Sheldon and they represented air, soil and water. The mascots were designed by Matthew Hattan and Jozef Szekeres and they represented the energy and activity of Australia and its people.
Powder, Coal and Copper of the 2002 Winter Olympics
Powder, Copper and Coal were the official mascots for the 2002 Winter Olympics held in Utah, USA. The mascots were indigenous animals of the Western USA area and they were named after natural resources important to the economy of Utah, the host city. All the characters were featured prominently in American Indians folktales and they wore amulets around their necks to remind them of heritage. They collectively meant faster, higher and stronger.
Phevos and Athena of the 2004 Summer Olympics
Phevos and Athena were one of the few examples of anthropomorphic mascots used in the Olympics. They were the official mascots for the 2004 Summer Olympics held in Athens, Greece. Their creation was inspired by ancient Greek dolls and their names interlinked to ancient Greece. They represented a link between Greek history and the modern Olympics Games. They represented participation, brotherhood, equality, cooperation, fair play and the everlasting Greek value of human scale according to the organizers.
Neve and Gliz of the 2006 Winter Olympics
Neve and Gliz were created by Pedro Albuquerque and were the official mascots for the 2006 Winter Olympics held in Turin, Italy. Neve means Snow in Italian and Gliz is a short form of Ice in Italian and they both represented the characteristics of the white Olympics. Neve was a humanized female snowball and wore red to signify softness, friendship and elegance while Gliz was a humanized male snowball that wore blue to represent joy and enthusiasm.
Beibei, Jingjing, Huanhuan, Yingying, Nini of the 2008 Summer Olympics
These mascots were known as Fuwa, which translates to luck dolls. They were the official mascots for the 2008 Summer Olympics held in Beijing, China. They were designed by Han Meilin, a famous Chinese artist. The five Fuwa were: Beibei, Jingjing, Huanhuan, Yingying and Nini. Together, their names formed a sentence which when translated meant “Beijing welcomes you”. They were also known as the friendlies.
Quatchi and Miga of the 2010 Winter Olympics
Miga and Quatchi were the official 2010 Winter Olympics mascots which were held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The mascots were based on the local wildlife and other mythical and legendary creatures that existed in Vancouver. Miga was female and Quatchi was male. The mascots were initially criticized as lacklustre and lacking in capacity to showcase British Columbia adequately.
Wenlock of the 2012 Summer Olympics
Wenlock was the official for the 2012 Summer Olympics held in London, England, United Kingdom. It drew inspiration from Munch Wenlock and was designed by Iris, a renowned London-based creative agency. The mascot received varied reviews with some criticizing it as horrible while others praising it as a digital age era mascot. It made a few appearances in schools and community events before retiring for good.
Vinicius of the 2016 Summer Olympics
Vinicius was the official mascot for the 2016 Summer Olympics held in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. It was created by the animation company Birdo which is based in Sao Paulo. Vinicius represented a wide variety of Brazilian wildlife which included cats, monkeys and birds combined together. The mascot was named after the Brazilian lyricist Vinicius de Moraes. The mascot appeared in various animations before being retired as it is the custom of IOC.
Soohorang of the 2018 Winter Olympics
Soohorang was a white tiger who acted as the official 2018 Winter Olympics held in Pyeongchang, Gangwon, South Korea. Sooho means protection in the Korean language, while rang derives from Ho-rang-i which means tiger in Korean. Tigers are adored and respected in Korean folklore and culture. Baekho or the white tiger is thought to be a spiritual animal that watches over the In mountains and nature hence the inspiration. In conclusion, Soohorang meant full of passion and enthusiasm, the Olympic spirit.
Miraitowa of the 2020 Summer Olympics
Miraitowa was the official mascot for the 2020 Summer Olympics held in Tokyo, Japan. The events were held in 2021 instead of 2020 due to disruption caused by COVID-19. The checkered design was inspired by the ichimatsu moyo pattern. The mascot was created by the Japanese artist Ryo Taniguchi. Mirai means future in Japanese and Towa means eternity. The mascot was intended to embody both the old and new innovations. Its name was chosen to inspire eternal hope in the hearts of people all over the world.
Bing Dwen Dwen of the 2022 Winter Olympics
Bing Dwen Dwen was the official mascot for the recently concluded 2022 Winter Olympics held in Beijing, China. Its name possibly meant ice. Bing Dwen Dwen is a giant panda with a suit of ice, a heart of gold and a love of winter sports. Bing means ice and embodies purity and strength, a major characteristic of the Winter Olympics. Dwen Dwen means health, liveliness and cuteness. He was designed by Cao Xue, chief designer at Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts.