The arrival of the 2018 season means a new ball pig from the St. Paul Saints (independent; American Association), who have unveiled Porknite.
The Saints revealed the name Porknite, inspired by the video game Fortnite, at their annual World’s Largest Game of Catch in Lowertown Saint Paul. The name was selected from more than 2,000 entries in the Name the Pig Contest presented by the Star Tribune at startribune.com. The submission of names were extremely creative and ran the gamut of current events, popular movies and famous people we lost within the last year. Whether it was an ode to the Royal Wedding, with Meghan Porkle, a tip of the snout to Minnesota filmmakers, Ethan and Joel Coen, honoring the 20th Anniversary of their cult classic film with the Pig Lebowski, or showing reverence for the most well-known theoretical physicist with Stephen Hamking.
The winning entry was submitted by Kevin Cooper from Richfield. Kevin will receive a $50 Saints gift card, VIP Saints tickets, a photo with the pig and will escort the pig at a game.
During the previous 25 seasons the Saints have had a pig mascot and each has had a unique name. Many of the names play on hot topics of the year, current events or local celebrities. Last season the Saints tested the political waters with Alternative Fats. In 2016 the Saints honored one of the most iconic artists with Little Red Porkette. During the first season at CHS Field the Saints paid homage to Lowertown artists they went with Pablo Pigasso. In 2014 the Saints received the Colboar bump with Stephen Colboar. The 2012 season saw two mascots for the first time: Kim Lardashian and Kris Hamphries. Past names have included Mackleboar (2014), Brat Favre (2010), Slumhog Millionaire (2009), Boarack Ohama (2008), Notorious P.I.G. – Piggy Smalls (2003) and Kevin Bacon (2001).
When the Saints moved to town in 1992, their sister team in Fort Myers was having great success with a live Golden Retriever mascot and the Saints wanted to capitalize on that success. Libby Veeck, the wife of Saints owner and President Mike Veeck, came across an interesting tidbit in a book she was reading and discovered St. Paul was known as “Pig’s Eye” after Pierre “Pig’s Eye” Parrant. Thus, the pig mascot was born.
Since 1993 the Saints have received the pig from Dennis and Marilyn Hauth who handle, train, design costumes and house the pigs.
Image of Porknite courtesy St. Paul Saints.