As reported in the Tribune last week, the Pratt High School Greenback finished 2nd in the USA TODAY regional mascot competition. And as mentioned, win or not, a lot of positives have resulted from the experience as Greenback Nation came together in the effort to support the Fighting Frog.
For one thing, it now seems to be well established that The Greenback as we know him was designed by recently deceased Diane Baker Sevick ’63—ending any speculation over the originator of the now-famous logo.
The Tribune has received at least four separate confirmations that Sevick drew the Fighting Frog as a decoration for the homecoming assembly in support of her friend Phyllis Huffman Larue, who was running for queen. The most recent to corroborate that story was Jim Lewis, PHS football coaching icon, who was new to PHS at that time in history.
In addition to clearing up any mystery as to the designer of the Fighting Frog, another positive to emerge from the contest is that fundraising efforts are being organized by members of Greenback Nation to offset the funds that PHS did not win by virtue of placing 2nd in regionals.
$2000 was at stake as the top national prize in the contest, so the PHS athletic department missed out on that opportunity. But not to despair. It has come to the attention of this office that at least a couple of different initiatives are underway to raise funds that could possibly more than make up the difference in the money that Pratt High missed out on.
Phyllis Huffman Larue (for whose benefit the Frog was originally designed) and Sharon Clevenger (the sister of Diane Baker Sevick) are looking into ways to raise funds to possibly update/enhance the Fighting Frog mascot costume.
An effort by other alumni has been posted on FACEBOOK by Larry Hurst urging benefactors to donate money to try to raise two thousand AND ONE dollars for Pratt High, which would exceed the amount that will be received by the national contest winner from USA TODAY. Any Greenback Nation citizen can donate, with $20 the suggested amount, to “The Greenback Mascot Fund” c/o Bill Rea, 112 N. Iuka, Pratt KS 67124.
As the Tribune reported last week, Greenback Nation is not going to let a little thing like placing 2nd in regionals keep them from continuing to express and celebrate their school pride.