AMES, Iowa — Before 2008, the only place Iowa State fans could see their beloved mascot “Cy” was at Iowa State sporting events.
Alumni association leaders decided that wasn’t enough.
“When we constructed this building, one of the key tenants we wanted was a bronze statue,” said Jeff Johnson, President of the Iowa State University Alumni Association.
Two “Cys” was great, but inspired by the popularity of similar projects in Illinois, Kansas, and at the University of Iowa, a group of young professionals and local artists came together to make “Cy” a bigger part of the Ames community.
“The statues are about 110 pounds made of fiber glass. He is hollow,” said Heather Johnson, an artist.
With a blank “Cy” canvas, artists created 29 statues of the cardinal who has been Iowa State’s mascot for 60 years.
“The statues will be on display at the Iowa State Alumni Center all weekend and then they will be put on display at various locations throughout the Ames community,” said Mike Mullen, an organizer of the project.
Designs include “armored Cy”, “military tribute Cy”, and a “Cy” dedicated to the late Jack Trice.
“That was the one I felt the most pressure to get right,” said Heather Johnson.
The statues will be out until December.
After that, local businesses who sponsored some of the designs will claim their “Cy”, while the rest will be auctioned off with proceeds supporting student scholarships.
“They’re supporting charities and they’re also supporting students,” Jeff Johnson told Channel 13 News.
Of course, you can still catch the real “Cy” at Jack Trice Stadium, but he now has a little more company.
“He’s always been what a mascot should be. When you’re down, “Cy” picks you up,” said Johnson.
Fans can see all 29 “Cy” statues tomorrow at the ISU Alumni Center.
It’s located just north of Jack Trice Stadium.