Quatchi’s Pals: Sumi!

Who is Sumi? Well, according to his official Mascot Profile

Sumi is an animal spirit who lives in the mountains of British Columbia. Like many Canadians, Sumi’s background is drawn from many places. He wears the hat of the orca whale, flies with the wings of the mighty thunderbird and runs on the strong furry legs of the black bear.

Sumi’s name comes from the Salish word “Sumesh” which means “guardian spirit.” Sumi takes his role very seriously. He works hard to protect the land, water and creatures of his homeland. Sumi is a great fan of the Paralympic Games. He’s determined to learn all the sports, so he can play and race with his animal friends all winter long.

Transformation is a common theme in the art and legend of West Coast First Nations. Transformation represents the connection and kinship between the human, animal and spirit world. Revered animals, such as the orca whale, the bear and the thunderbird, are depicted in transformation through masks, totems and other forms of art. The orca is the traveller and guardian of the sea. The bear often represents strength and friendship. And the thunderbird — which creates thunder by flapping its wings — is one of the most powerful of the supernatural creatures.

Home: Whistler
Hobbies: Alpine skiing, flying over the Coast Mountains
Favourite food: Hot cocoa
Dream: To share his forest and mountain home with the world
Favourite colour: Fern green

Unfortunately, Sumi is sort of a third wheel to Quatchi and Miga, trailing both in a mascot popularity poll. In another poll, he actually placed fourth, behind Quatchi, Miga, and “mascot sidekick” Mukmuk (more on him later).

Sumi’s still pretty cool, however, or else these schoolkids wouldn’t be doing a ritualistic Sumi Chant, nor would there be this fun Soaring Sumi video game.

Besides, any pal of Quatchi is a pal of ours.

— Steve

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