The Mighty Turkey
THE STORY OF THE ST. MARY'S MASCOT
Until 1975, St. Mary’s was known as the Belles (as in Southern belle). At that time, MUS (a local boys school) had jokingly adopted the Buzzard as the school mascot in place of their traditional Owl. Having brothers and friends at MUS, Seniors Lisa Morrow Morten and Crissy Garrett Haslam noticed the excitement and school spirit generated by the new bird of prey moniker.
The two students set out to find a temporary mascot for St. Mary’s, hoping to generate similar excitement and boost school spirit. After considering locally inspired options like the Mosquitoes and the Chipmunks, Morten and Haslam decided the Turkey was “ugly in a cute sort of way” and would match well with the MUS Buzzards. The 1975-1976 school year saw St. Mary’s become the Turkeys.
In 2013, USA Today contacted the school for inclusion in the Most Unique High School Mascot contest. Turkey pride took St. Mary’s by storm, as online voting commenced. The Turkey won first prize at the state and regional levels and ultimately placed sixth in the national competition. Turkey fever was at St. Mary’s to stay, and girls from age 3 to 18, faculty, staff, parents and alumnae were bursting with pride of their mascot.
In 2016, the Turkey celebrated her 40th year as the mascot of St. Mary's. Now, and for the last four decades, we are Turkey Nation!