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Make Way for the Power Panther

October 23, 2012
ANDREW POTTER , Times-Republican

Well, it's official, I'm going to be a Power Panther.

My Halloween costume?


Some sort of special University of Northern Iowa alumni group?

Wrong again, I didn't attend UNI.

A costume I'll be wearing Wednesday morning to encourage elementary students to eat healthy?


Yep, walking through the hallways Wednesday morning at a local school will be myself in what is known as a Power Panther costume. I know very little about it other than it's part of a special breakfast at the school. Notice, I'm not mentioning which school as I don't want hecklers to show up.

I was recruited to this job due to the fact the costume needs someone tall, and I fit the bill according to a school district employee. This is going to be very interesting.

Apparently, my height was the only prerequisite for the job as I barely need to do anything else while in the suit. The school district employee noted this fact in this line of an email to me.

"When wearing the costume - you don't have to say anything - because Power Panther doesn't talk, he just nods in agreement and gives thumbs up," the email read.

Well, that's going to be easy enough. I can move my arms and head, though it will be weird not being able to talk.

I also wondered if I could take my camera and do a story, but I'm not sure the Power Panther costume will allow me to do that either. I don't think the Power Panther went to journalism school, so I would be out of character.

This is not the first time my height has led me to being asked to get into a costume and entertain kids. I've also been asked to be Cat in the Hat in the past but my schedule didn't allow. Well, fortunately - or unfortunately depending on how it works out Wednesday - my schedule is clear to be the Power Panther.

The school district employee appears to be ready for me as her email also read: "Should be a fun time!"

Does she mean fun for me, or fun for the people that get to see me in this costume?

I guess we'll have to see Wednesday.

I promise to let my column readers know next week how this adventure went. The honor of being a Power Panther is just too special not to share with you.


Reporter Andrew Potter is a Tuesday columnist for the Times-Republican. The views expressed in this column are personal views of the writer and don't necessarily reflect the views of the T-R. Contact Andrew Potter at 641-753-6611 or



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