By PHONG LY
The 40th Beautiful Bulldog Contest, which took place in the Knapp Center last Monday, kicked off Relays week crowning the new Drake Relays mascot: Beau. He was crowned in front of 3,000 spectators. It was up to the judges to decide how each Bulldog best represents these nine awards and both the judging time and the pageant is what they use to judge these categories.
This is a show that most Drake students are excited for. First Year Sarah Hutchison is a self-proclaimed “dog fan” was excited seeing that many dogs on campus.
“It was an hour to go watch dogs so I was all for it 100 percent,” Hutchison said.
Hutchison was glad that Beau won, but her personal favorite was another contestant named Wringley from Nevada, Iowa.
“I have a friend named Beau and everyone in my friend group was so excited when Beau won but I kinna wanted Wrigley to win,” Hutchison said. “Beau is still adorable though.”
This year’s the annual Beautiful Bulldog Contest reached out to Student Activities Board(SAB) to help promoting the event. Sloan Nickel, one of the Relays Co-Chairs, said SAB provided volunteers and also with getting students excited for the event.
“It was SAB first time with the direct hand in the event,” Nickel said. “I think in the past we just shared the Facebook event for them but this time we actually provided students to help out at the event and handed out t-shirts “
Like many other students, Nickel had a personal favorite, and it was Honeybelle June Brown, who belong to her best friend.
“We all got tshirts with her face on them,” Nickel said. “ We were all really excited, but sadly she didn’t win anything.”
Nickel said Honeybelle’s family might be looking into reentering the competition the following year. Despite her favorite contestant not winning, Nickel still had a good time.
“I loved it and it was so fun.” Nickel said. “I liked that they put the students on the floor so they got to like be down there with the dogs and community members as well.”
Beau became the official Drake Relays mascot on that day, and for a week was busy touring around campus in his royal crown and cape.
“I got to see him all over campus this last week,” Nickel said. “I saw him when I helped setting up for the relays concert. His owners were really nice and it’s cool that they are [Drake] alumni.”
His owners, TJ and Angela McKenzie, are alumni as well as both sets of their parents. The McKenzie family took the stage when Beau took the crown.
The runner-ups this year were Watson, who attracted immediate attention with his red remote-controlled convertible. Watson also won the Facebook’s Choice Award. Second runner-up was Stella Rose, who also took home the Drake Spirit Award.
Other winners include Sparkle, who won the Congeniality Award, GiGi, who won Family Theme Stella, who won Rescue Dog. Fan favorite contestant Goose won the Porterhouse Choice Award.
Photo courtesy of Hannah Cohen