Heat takes Michigan State University mascot Sparty out of parades
EAST LANSING (AP) — Michigan State University says the school’s Sparty mascot will no longer participate in most parades due to concerns about heat stroke or other health issues for those wearing the costume.
School spokeswoman Emily Guerrant says in an email the MSU Alumni Office made the decision “due to health concerns for Sparty and his team.”
Guerrant tells the Lansing State Journal the policy is “still in development” and is expected to be re-evaluated later this year. She says there have been no near-death experiences for students who have worn the Sparty suit at parades, but there were concerns some “pushed themselves too hard” in hot weather.
The newspaper says Sparty still is expected to participate in MSU’s annual fall Homecoming Parade in East Lansing unless the weather conditions pose health risks.