PORTLAND, Ore. – “Timber” Jim Serrill, the legendary team icon for the Portland Timbers, received Best Mascot honors for 2008, as announced by leading industry website Gameops.com recently in its annual Best of Awards for the past year.
Recognized for his passion, unique characteristics, stunts and traditions, Serrill was singled out among hundreds of professional sports and college team characters across all sports and levels as the top mascot of the year.
“Timber Jim is tremendously deserving of this award,” said Merritt Paulson, president of the Timbers. “Jim has put his heart and soul into the Timbers franchise for years. He is an innovator, a spokesman, an ambassador and entertainer. It is fabulous to have his contributions recognized.”
During his tenure as the Timbers’ team icon, Serrill’s back flips, chainsaw, stunts and chants became unique and instrumental components of the fan experience during Timbers matches at PGE Park. Announcing his retirement as the team’s icon in January, Serrill gave a farewell performance on April 17 to help the club open its 2008 campaign. He entertained fans one final time and was honored during a special halftime ceremony with a commemorative banner that now hangs in the rafters of PGE Park. In total, Serrill served as the Timbers team icon for 12 seasons (1978-82; 2001-07).
Now as a passionate fan, Serrill still attends matches and continues to serve as a mentor for the Timbers’ new mascot Joey Webber.
A panel of select industry experts judged the Best Mascot as one whose work was creative and enthusiastic, and served as a valuable tool for their team and in their community.
A total of seven Best of Awards were decided from nominations across all sports. The National Basketball Association’s Cleveland Cavaliers were honored for Best Entertainment Group, the International Hockey League’s Fort Wayne Komets won the category of Best Contest/On-Field Promotion, the Best Team Introduction award was given to the Philadelphia Flyers of the National Hockey League, minor league baseball’s Kane County Cougars were recognized with the Best Game Promotion, the Pacific Coast League’s Fresno Grizzlies and NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets shared the Best Team Operations award, and Quick Change, a two-person act that magically changes clothing in a blink of an eye, was deemed Best Act in the eighth-annual rankings by Gameops.com.