Worlds collided at the Phillies game this Sunday, as mascots from local schools and pro teams gathered at Citizens Bank Park for the Phillie Phanatic’s birthday celebration. But the big surprise came when the Phanatic’s friends from afar, the Galápagos Gang, charged onto the field.
Never before seen in south Philly, Bessie, a blue-footed boobie, Sid, a Galápagos sea lion, Iggy, a land iguana, and Calvin, a giant tortoise, all appeared in their Phillies finest for the celebration. Legend has it that the Phanatic came to Philadelphia from the Galápagos Islands 37 years ago. And a few years ago he joined us to revisit his homeland—quite a surprise to our guests aboard National Geographic Endeavour.
The reunited Galápagos Gang did not miss a beat as Bessie, Sid, Calvin and Iggy joined the Phanatic in the stands. They danced. They goofed around. Young fans and families looked on in wonderment, as if they were seeing their favorite players up close.
The Phanatic’s real birthday surprise came when Citizens Bank announced that the Galápagos Gang is taking up residence in south Philly. That’s right, they’re staying! And the citizens of Philadelphia will be hearing more about these creatures of the Galápagos as the season continues.
The celebration culminated with one lucky fan winning our Galápagos expedition to see the islands and their extraordinary creatures for herself. Maybe she’ll find a little Phanatic. It seems stranger things have happened.
By Marc Cappelletti, Director of Expedition Development