WHS senior grows into mascot role
Senior Alex Mellis delighted fans as Rowdy the Mule Mascot this year.
Senior Alex Mellis admits that he likes to be goofy and the center of attention, so when the staff at Wahkiakum High School responded to his interest in being Rowdy the Mule Mascot by asking him to take on the role this year, it was a no brainer.
"Where do I sign?" he asked.
The best part of his role as Rowdy have been the interactions with youngsters.
"At a football game a little kid gave me a red race car," Mellis grinned. "He said 'This race car matches you. You are the best mascot ever. If the Seahawks had a mascot, you would be better than him!"
His final duty as Rowdy was this weekend at the State 2B Tournament in Spokane, and he relished every moment of it. He even debuted a new move, a cartwheel, to go along with his Mule kick and somersault.
He has been responsible for the care of the costume all year. He hadn't been able to wash it since the cheer team and band arrived in Spokane, so it was getting a little smelly on Friday. But during the year, he regularly brought it home and washed the body suit and hung it out to dry, while wiping out the head with disinfectant, followed with Febreeze.
Mellis plans to attend either Evergreen or a college in Fairbanks, AK in the fall to study "something outdoorsy." He'd like to stay closer to home, but he has received a good financial aid package from the school in Alaska.
And yes, he's already asked if they need someone to act as mascot.
"The mascot in Fairbanks is a polar bear," Mellis said. "I'm hoping to be a polar bear."
If pressed, his favorite teachers are Mr. Rooklidge and Mrs. Niemeyer, but he really likes a lot of them. He likes science and math, and even enjoys writing essays and poetry.
"I love to go outside with Mr. Rooklidge in Enviro, to run data and take stream surveys and salmon surveys," Mellis said.
Mellis works at the Columbia River Ranch on Puget Island. He turned out for wrestling for the first time this year. He also ran for the cross country team.
Mellis is the son of Carol Peachey and Mike Mellis. His family lives near the Cowlitz County line, and he went to grade school and middle school in Longview before transferring to Wahkiakum High School his freshman year.