TimeOut … with Sammy the Seagull, Everett High School’s mascot

Sammy has always been different from the other seagulls: friendlier, slower and bigger – MUCH bigger. Oh, there’s also the whole talking thing. But instead of flying solo, Sammy put her unique skills to good use by becoming Everett High School’s beloved mascot.

Taking flight: Born and raised near Everett High, Sammy loves giving back to her community. Her family members applaud (as best they can) her career choice. “They love it because (they) feel that I’ve gone above and beyond what normal seagulls do,” Sammy said. “Instead of eating trash, I decided to enter the entertainment field.”

Dan Bates / The Herald

Sammy the Seagull (a.k.a. senior Michelle Ellsworth) is Everett High School’s mascot. For more on Ellsworth, see the Prep Notebook on this page.

Let’s talk: Sammy rarely talks when she’s on the job, but in an exclusive interview she said she learned to speak English by listening to Everett High students.

Fan frenzy: No matter what sporting event she’s at, Sammy’s mission is the same: to inspire the home crowd and energize her fellow Seagulls. “I try to really create a good fan base and psych everybody up,” she said. “The team’s gonna play better if the crowd is loud and crazy.”

Big bird: Sammy was once self-conscious of her abnormally large size, but she eventually found her niche as an eye-catching mascot. “I was huge and so I’d eat a lot more trash than (the other seagulls),” Sammy said of her awkward childhood. “I decided, ‘This isn’t going to work. I need to find a job.’”

Biggest rival: Every sporting event is special, but Sammy gets especially excited when Everett battles Cascade and her nemesis, the Cascade Bruin. The usually friendly mascot competition recently took a dangerous turn during a non-conference basketball event. “I tried to say ‘Hi’ to the Bruin,” Sammy said, “but he just started coming after me. I think he wanted to eat me.”

Mascot idol: Of all her celebrated mascot peers, Sammy most admires the University of California Santa Cruz Banana Slug: “Like me, it’s an odd mascot. I have a lot of respect for it.” Some gulls occasionally dine on insects, but Sammy promised she’ll never feast on a fellow mascot.

Flying the coop: Sammy has cherished her time in Everett but after the 2005-06 school year she plans to migrate to the East Coast to explore other career opportunities. “I figure it’s time to settle down and start a family. I can’t do this forever,” she said. In the meantime, Sammy’s searching for an energetic replacement. The ideal gull is “optimistic all the time, friendly and willing to meet anybody.”

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