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Posted on Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 4:03 p.m.

Ypsilanti school district students choose Grizzlies as new mascot

By Kyle Feldscher

Students from the Willow Run Community Schools and Ypsilanti Public Schools selected the Grizzlies to be the new mascot of the newly formed Ypsilanti Community Schools.

According to a statement from the Washtenaw Intermediate School District, more than 45 percent of students from the two school districts chose to become the Grizzlies. The other two options, Trailblazers and Flyers, received more than 30 percent and less than 20 percent, respectively.

Several focus groups were held with students with the assistance of the Eastern Michigan University Bright Futures program, the Safe and Supportive Schools program and the Neutral Zone, officials said.

“Students consistently expressed a desire to select a new mascot to represent Ypsilanti Community Schools,” the statement read.

The district's colors will be black and Vegas gold.

The new school district launches on July 1 and will be open to students in September. The district will be headed by WISD superintendent Scott Menzel.

The WISD will administer a $6 million state grant awarded to the new district to help with the expenses of unifying the two school districts. Part of that sum will be allocated for new uniforms and signs “that will assist with establishing the identity for the new district,” according to the statement.

Kyle Feldscher can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 11:22 p.m.

Let me try this again but with more of a milk toast approach... The ypsi school district really messed up by not including a choice allowing the students a chance to honor the legacy of both high schools.... A few years ago some much more wise people decided that the name '' Braves'' was too offensive for a mascot of Ypsilanti High.... their infinatewisdom they removed the ''brave'' and they became the ''Phoenix''.... So...with the combining of both Willow Run and Ypsi High they pas on a GOLDEN chance to honor both schools by offering the name of ''Brave Flyers'' honoring both schools and maybe even honoring the history of the Ypsilanti Willow Run area..... Good job you far wiser and smarter people.....


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 5:46 p.m.

Slauson is the golden bear. Never saw one, but heck, it is as good as any.,


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 11:38 a.m.

Maybe they'll sell more athletic clothing because there seems to be quite a market for clothes with bears on them.


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 11:10 a.m.

How about Flying Phoenix? Not Grizzlies. And black and gold? How nasty looking is that? I'm glad I got out of there when I did

Coach Sok

Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 10:50 a.m.

Dexter-the-Bear going to make an appearance at halftime this Fall?!

Section Six

Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 3:35 a.m.

Ypsi schools should have hopped on the marketing cash cow that the university down the street passed on years ago: The Fighting Emus. (On second thought, maybe it wouldn't have worked in this instance ... but, I'm telling you, people around the country would've been wearing EMU Emu shirts right now. Cha-ching.)


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 2:32 a.m.

I was hoping for the Brave Grizzlies.


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 5:46 a.m.

Some people may feel that "Brave" is a reference to native americans. Based on the EMU Huron history such a mascot would be politically incorrect.

dading dont delete me bro

Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 2:13 a.m.

oakland u hand me downs...


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 1:34 a.m.

I think they should have chosen something native to Michigan. Like a Heron.


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 1:39 a.m.

Any Spartans or wolverines in the area

Mackinac Straits

Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 1:20 a.m.

Doh! Shouldn't the taxpayers or their elected representatives picked the name? Seems like property owners who have a vested interest in the school, its performance and image, along with board officials should have exercised some adult oversight on this. Oh, right, who can forget about the strong grizzly heritage of the area in which we can all take pride?


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 4:03 p.m.

The CHILDREN chose a name. It's great to see they have voted and in a mature manner accepted the choice. This bodes well for the future of the district.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 11:32 p.m.

Seems like there should/could have been a runoff vote between the two mascots receiving the top votes. That way there would actually have been maybe a majority winner.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 11:28 p.m.

Students picked "Grizzles". correct? Good. Hmmm.....seems they were very mature in making the decision. Good for them. I like that. Perhaps some of us could take a lesson from the children.


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 2:51 p.m.

You know what happens when you assume, I have a mortgage in the now defunct Ypsilanti school district, and I did vote against the consolidation. Two wrongs don't make a right.


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 5:02 a.m.

An ann arbor person making a joke about Ypsi. How original. By the way, why did your superintendent with the bloated contract bail on you again? And how are those budget cuts coming?


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 1:41 a.m.

I still think the poseidons or Neptunes would have been more appropriate representing the underwater mortgages in the district, but I'm cool with this selection by the kids as well.

Kyle Austin

Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 10:17 p.m.

Well now they officially have the same color scheme and mascot as Oakland University. Maybe they could buy some used uniforms for a good price to save some cash.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 9 p.m.

What? Not the Bombers? Grizzlies is about as interesting as Wildcats.

Usual Suspect

Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 1:01 a.m.

"putting together an Access table " I'm sorry.

Ann English

Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 12:14 a.m.

I don't know about high school team names, but while putting together an Access table of 240 private, public and historically black universities, I noticed a lot of teams calling themselves Wildcats or Bulldogs. Not Grizzlies.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 8:33 p.m.

Nice to see that the Board followed through and picked a name that has relevence to the area's history.


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 4:58 a.m.

This is one of the few times that the board did what is right. I would agree it wasn't the best choice as it is kinda generic, but it is what the students wanted.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 11:30 p.m.

Student decided. Respect it.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 8:31 p.m.

What? You think that they would chose something like the Liberators or something that could bring the two communities together based on a common history.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 11:31 p.m.

Sounds like the children are fine.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 8:34 p.m.

They can buy some used uniforms from Oakland University.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 8:14 p.m.

I like it!


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 11:32 p.m.

Me too. Most of all I like the students made the decision. Good for them! Way to go Grizzlies! We are proud of you!