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Wolf Sculpture Celebrates New Wyoming Mascot

A bronze wolf head sculpture, frozen in mid-howl, now stands in the Wyoming High School gymnasium lobby, a permanent art installment celebrating the district’s new mascot. Inscribed in its granite base is the Rudyard Kipling quote, “For the strength of the pack is in the wolf and the strength of the wolf is in the pack,” followed by “Wyoming High School Wolves, Established 2012.”

Superintendent Tom Reeder commissioned local artists Jovannah Nicholson and Mic Carlson to create two sculptures. Nicholson, a ceramic artist, made the wolf molding, and Carlson completed the bronzing and installation. Another similar sculpture will be installed this spring in the school’s Athletic Complex near the football field.

The $12,000 cost of the sculptures was funded through donations from General Motors Foundation and other sources, Reeder said.The sculpture’s clay molding was created by local artist Jovannah Nicholson, with bronzing and installing by Mic Carlson

Embracing the Wolf

Wyoming high schools historically had two different mascots: the Golden Hawks represented the former Rogers High School and the Vikings represented the former Wyoming Park High School. When the schools consolidated in 2012, the district changed its mascot to Wyoming Wolves.

While many schools have sculptures of their mascots, there was never one of a Golden Hawk or a Viking, and Reeder wanted to have something permanent for the students.

“The students have embraced the wolf (as a mascot) very well,” Reeder said. “The sculpture allows that to flourish more.”

Reeder, who graduated from Wyoming Park High School in 1981, said students will have no connection to former mascots in the next couple of years, but the wolf is all theirs.

“This is their history,” he said.

Wyoming High School student Olivia Chivis stopped to check out the wolf with her friends. “We need more stuff in our school to represent us,” she said.

“We want to have more things to show our pride,” added student Tatiana Hawkins.

First Looks

Students stand around the new sculptureThe sculpture was unveiled during an open house to showcase new additions at the school Dec. 13. Visitors toured the new two-story, 12,000-square-foot band and choir suite at Wyoming High School, 1350 Prairie Parkway, and the new Historical Hallway, which includes photos and memorabilia of Wyoming Rogers and Wyoming Park high schools spanning the decades.

Also, three new scoreboards were donated by Meijer — two for the gymnasium and one for the football field.

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Erin Albanese
Erin Albanese
Erin Albanese is associate managing editor and reporter, covering Byron Center, Kentwood, Wyoming and Grand Rapids Community College. She was one of the original SNN staff writers, helping launch the site in 2013 and enjoys fulfilling the mission of sharing the stories of public education. She has worked as a journalist in the Grand Rapids area since 2000. A graduate of Central Michigan University, she has written for The Grand Rapids Press, Advance Newspapers, On-the-Town Magazine and Group Tour Media. Read Erin's full bio

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