Saturday, July 25, 2015

The Person Behind the Racing Presidents

Me with all the presidents on my birthday last year.

As you know I am a HUGE fan of the racing presidents at Nats Park. There is probably not a game I go to that I don't take a picture or two or more of a president.

A few days back the Post had an article about the person who is responsible for maintaining the presidents. That person is Ingrid Crepeau. She happened on this by complete chance when she bumped into Teddy at a party. Crepeau is a puppeteer and spotted what was wrong with Teddy right off:
But after decades of building ­larger-than-life puppets for children’s theater, Crepeau told Teddy that she could get him back to his crowd-pleasing antics in no time by replacing his frame with one made of airplane aluminum, which is much lighter but more durable than other metal. And the Nats hired her to do it.

A year later, the Nats asked her to replace frames for all of the presidents and to make five baseball caps for them. By the third season, Crepeau was customizing 27 mascot shirts — no small feat, given that each is as big as a pup tent, requiring six yards of fabric.
Thus started a second career that has morphed into not only taking care of the racing presidents but just about every other mascot for a team around the DC area.

The article is absolutely delightful. There is even a video of her huge triumph the other day at Nats Park of all the presidents dressed up in Star Wars characters.

A little more from the article:
It was over in a flash. Six weeks of work came to a close as Washington won the race. Walking back to her seat, Crepeau seemed subdued as 40,000 fans above her turned their attention back to baseball.
But rounding the corner, she came across all six presidents posing for a photo, along with Screech as Obi-Wan and Little Screech as Yoda. They beckoned her over with silent waves, and putting her arms around the fuzzy creatures on either side of her, she gave a big grin. She was with her people.
All I can say is a job well done.

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